Slides in this set
How to write about theories Visual Codes:
______'s theory of _____ suggests that... Mise-en-scene
According to _____'s theory.... Use of camera shots and angles
Under the _____ theory... Use of colour- effect and connotations
Here, ____'s theory appears to be evident because... Clothing and physical appearance
In this respect _____'s theory of _____ is evident in this case study because... Body language
This case study therefore challenges _____'s theory because... Props
_____'s theory of ____ appears to be challenged here because... Facial expression and gaze
This aspect appears to subvert _____'s theory because...
This is an example of _____ (______'s theory)... Aural Codes:
What you can hear (diegetic, non-diegetic)
All media texts are polysemic (have multi meanings)
It can be seen that...
Use of particular words
This is evidence of...
Level of formality/informal/slang
Other noises and sounds e.g. background noise
The idea of ____ is subverted through...
It can be argued that...
A preferred reading (Reception theory) is...
Editing- pace and type of transitions
An oppositional reading would be...
Titles/captions- choice, size, colour, use of language
This would suggest an oppositional reading...
A contrasting interpretation is...
Composition (placement of images)
An alternative view is...
Other uses of technology e.g. social media, interactive
_____ theorised that...
Some would disagree and would instead argue that...
What do you expect to see?
Some would disagree and claim that...
Did you get what you expected?
_____ claimed that...
How was it different?
_____ believes that...
What techniques did it use that were expected?
e.g. Documentary- hand held cameras, interviews, voice
· Involves correction, condensation, organisation and modifications
· To create a correct, consistent, accurate and fluid piece of work
What to look for when analysing a clip?
· Order of shots
· Shot duration
· Pace and rhythm
· Special effects
Continuity -> to make sure things are continuous
· Montage -> giving information in compressed form
Non-continuity editing -> continuity is broken and construction is more apparent, meaning created via juxtaposition and metaphor shot inserts
1. 180 degree rule- is to orientate the viewer, to establish the placement of characters.
2. Match on action- is multiple cuts to show one continuous action
3. Shot reverse shot- goes continuously back and forth between the two shots to show that there is a connection between them. It is a form of
eye-line matching, if the character is looking at someone else.
4. Eye-line match- shot A; character is looking off-screen, shot B; what character is looking at
5. Cross cutting- technique of continuously alternating two or more scenes that happen simultaneously, as they cross, pace gradually gets
faster and tension builds up.
Insert shots- is a shot of part of a scene as filmed from a different angle and/or focal length from the master shot. Objects have to be kept in
the same relative position in-between the takes and have the same lighting.
Cutaway shot- is a video scene that cuts away to relevant images or footage, often used in documentaries when a vital piece of information is
needed to show the audience. Usually the dialogue or voice over will continue during the cutaway
Time- how is time shown/represented, story time; time of the events (e.g. a film over 50 years), discourse time; time taken to narrate the
even (how long to tell the story e.g. 2 hours)
Time allocation- who has the most time on screen, why? Who has the least time on screen, why?
Montage editing- is a series of shots that are not in sequential order, continuous or relate to each other, just like pieces of puzzle, often used
in trailers and TV opening
Slow; to make it calm/still, little number of shots/cuts which are long, to make audience calm or bored…read more
· Straight cutting- to show realism, in conversations Diegetic or synchronous sound (from on screen)
· Graphic match- when two shots match graphically, often with - Speech between characters
an overlap transition - Movement of props
· Overlap/dissolve- makes a softer transition, to show ellipsis - Footsteps
or time passing - Music from radio/TV within the film
· Fade in/out- (fade to black or appear to black- often used to - Weather
communicate ending or beginning)
· Wipe- often used to show new day or new scene/location Non-diegetic or asynchronous sound (layered over the film)
· Flash- to show flashbacks or flash-forwards (to show thoughts - Theme tune
or memories) - Voice over
- Music if played as an accompaniment to action; a background song
Special effects: to car chase
· Black and white- often used to show memory or time period
· Contrast- to alter the lighting (or contrast- very light lights Voice over
and dark darks sometimes with memories) - Introduce a particular part of the programme
· Colour- to add a colour filter to show a specific mood - Add extra information
· Animation- titles of shows or cartoons - Interpret the images for the audience
· CGI- computer generated images (e.g. avatar, planet or apes, - Link parts of the sequence
· Fast forward/slow motion- speeding up or slowing down Commentary conveys authority on an interpretation, particularly, if the
footage tone is moderate, assured and reasoned.
· Ghost trail- see multiple actions (overlapped) to show
someone drunk or on drugs
· Blur- to show un-clarity or fuzzy memory/flashback…read more
1. Define the target audience
"This text is targeted at a...- mass/niche/gender/genre
2. Socio-economic suggestion
"People in socio-economic groups A,B,C1,C2..."
3. "An unexpected audience might be..."
Apply the three theories:
a. How might different viewers respond to text in different
way- by INTERPRETING the text- Reception theory
Include preferred, negotiated and oppositional reading
b. How might different viewers respond to text in different
way- by WATCHING or READING the text for a different
purpose- Uses and Gratifications theory
Diversion, personal identity, surveillance, personal
c. How might different viewers respond to text in different
way- how it might AFFECT them- Effects theory
Immediate shock/influence- suggested by hypodermic
Is it an example of moral panic?
Cultivation stage?- accepting the forced values, no longer a
Preferred reading (a more passive audience)- what the writer
wants you to know
Negotiated reading- accept some values, challenge others
depending on individual background
Oppositional reading (a more active audience)- challenge or
reject intended meaning
Mise-en-scene -> used to describe everything in a frame
Leit motif -> a repeated symbol or sign that audience learns to
associate with a particular character…read more