Media Studies

Some important pieces of Media Studies information.

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The easiest ways to remember the difference between Diegetic and Non-Diegetic sound are:

Diegetic = Real

Non-Diegetic = Not Real

Or, remember it as the opposite of Fiction and Non-Fiction.

Diegetic sound: Realistic sound that can be heard by the characters, e.g. footsteps, birds, cars, etc.

Non-Diegetic sound: Sound that the characters cannot hear that has an effect on the audience, e.g. dramatic music.

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Camera Angles

Extreme Wide Shot (EWS) - The view is so far from the subject that it isn't visible. This is often used as an establishing shot.

Very Wide Shot (VWS) - The subject isbarely visible. The emphasis is on the environment.

Wide Shot (WS) - The whole of the subject is in the frame. This is also known as a 'long shot'.

Mid Shot (MS) - This shows the upper body of the subject.

Medium Close Up (MCU) - Halfway between a Mid Shot and a Close Up.

Close Up (CU) - This shows a certain section of the subject in detail, e.g. face.

Extreme Close Up (ECU) - Shows a specific feature of the subject in extreme detail, e.g. their eyes.

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Camera Angles pt.2

Cut In (CI) - Focuses on a different part on the subject, e.g. their hand.

Cut Away (CA) - A shot of something other than the subject.

Two Shot - A shot of two people that is usually framed like a mid shot.

Noddy Shot - The focus is on the reactions of the subject.

Over Shoulder Shot (OSS) - A shot looking at one subject over the shoulder of another.

Point of View Shot (POV) - Shows the view from the subject's perspective.

Weather Shot - Shows what the weather is like, making the weather the subject.

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Narrative, 'Enigma Code', and Diegesis

Narrative: The coherence/organisation given to a series of facts. The plot of a story, often re-counted in the past tense, e.g. "once upon a time".

Barthes' 'Enigma Code': Where the introdution intrigues the audience, perhaps with a puzzle. These puzzles often tend to continue throughout the story, creating mystery. Alsom they are usually solved later on in the story.

Diegesis: This is what the world that the story is set in is called.

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The Portrayal of Gender

Recently, the conventions regarding gender have been challenged in the media.

Stereotypical Men: Strong, the ehro, brave, main character, agressive, tall, muscular, somewhat super-human.

Stereotypical Women: Weak, scared, supporting character, target, damsel in distress, victim, goal for male lead, sex appeal.

Now, these stereotypes have now been challenged, and the men are becoming less manly and more average, and the women are becoming more manly and are often the hero.

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The Portrayal of Social Class

In the past, many films were set in an upper class setting, e.g. Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror. But in the present,  a lot of films and TV programmes are set in a low or middle class setting.

Soaps are part of many people's everyday lives and are largely set in a lower class setting. However, the characters and events are very over dramatised and stereotyped. This causes negative press on lower class people, as people assume the stereotypes are true.

Films such as 'This is England' and its follow-up series show lower class people from the 80s to be involved in violence and racism. This makes people who aren't from a lower class background think that people from this background are racist and/or violent. However, some films and games show the stereotypes of upper class people and communities, which are all largely positive.

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British Cinema

Production: Editing, camera angles, sound, mise-en-scene. Representation of age, gender, social class, people, locations.

Distribution: Audience age, gender, social class. Advertising on the internet, TV, radio. To buy on DVD, Blu-Ray, internet. Can be viewed by buying, renting, going to the cinerma, or on the internet.

Exhibition: To view on the internet, to buy, go to the cinema. New technology means there are more ways to view and at any time, any where.

What a film needs to include to be classed as British: Made in Britain, uses British locations, the crew is largely British, the cast is largely British, the film has some funding from British sources.

The UK Film Council is one of the main funders of British films.

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Media Language





Ideologies + Values


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M.I.G.R.A.I.N pt2

Media Language - Camera Angles, Editing, Sound, Mise-en-Scene.

Institutions - UK Film Council, Universal Studios.

Genre: Romantic Comedy (Rom-Com), Drama, Action, Comedy, Horror.

Representation: Social Class, Age, Location, Gender, People, etc.

Audience: Mass/Niche, Certificate, Gender, Social Class.

Ideologies + Values: The morals promoted.

Narrative: Todorov - conform or conflict to his theory?

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Todorov's Theory of Narrative - The Five Stages

1. A state of equilibrium (all is as it should be).

2. A disruption by an event.

3. A recognition that the disruption has occured.

4. An attempt to repair the damage of the disruption.

5. A return or restoration of a NEW equilibrium.

Todorov argues that a narrative involves a transformation. The character or the situations are transformed through the progress of the disruption.

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Essay Tips

Always refer back to the question.

Remember the focus of the question, e.g. representation of gender.

Look at stereotypes and how they are challenged.

Be formal.

Use terminology well and frequently.

Describe the source, not the details.

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Media Covergence + Cinema

People tend to go to the cinema less now, because films can be viewed on the go, at any time, any where - Portable DVD Players, PSPs, Ipods, downloads, and mobile phones can play films.

Films can be downloaded illegally, meaning they are free. This is far more popular now as cinema tickets are becoming more expensive.

Watching a film is now far less social, as you can pause, rewind, stop, and record them not only on DVDs, but on the TV.

You don't feel the same emotions you do watching a film in the cinema, as you do when you watch the same fim on your Ipod on the bus.

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The Hollywood 'Big Six'

Fox Entertainment Group: 20th Century Fox, 20th Century Fox Animation, Fox Searchlight.

Paramount Motion Pictures Group: Paramount Pictures, Dreamworks, United International Pictures, MTV Films, Nickelodeon Films.

NBC Universal: Universal Studios, Woking Title Films (London).

Sony Pictures: Columbia Tri Star, Metro Goldwyn Mayer.

Time Warner: Warner Bros, Castle Rock Entertainment, New Line Cinema, HBO.

Buena Vista Motion Pictures (owned by The Walt Disney Company): Walt Disney Pictures, Touchstone Pictures, Miramax Films.

All of these studios have their own distribution arms.

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Distribution in the UK

Many films are made without guarantee of distribution. They hope that something will 'turn up'. But without a distributor, the film doesn't get seen by the public, and small budget films can't raise a big enough budget to attact bigger stars and therefore distributors.

Why is it hard to attract distributors? The less popular the film, the higher % of boc office returns the exhibitor (cinema chain) demands. This means that if a films flops, the distributor suffers the most because they have paid print and marketing costs.

Once the production company has paid their backers and the exhibition costs, there may be nothing left for the production company.

Distributors get  % of a film's profits, but British Films are harder to market.

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This is really useful! 

It made me vote 1* :( I tried to click 5 

Laura Baker


haha, thank you :) i'm glad you found it useful :)

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