Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Close Analysis of Film Openings- Fight Club;

Fight Club (1995)

Directed by: David Fincher
Written by: Chuck Palahniuk, Jim Uhls
Staring: Edward Norton, Brad Pitt
Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Certification: 18

  • At the beginning the audience can't make out what the image is portraying. However it is shown that the shot is overly detailed as if it has a microscope effect as the tracking shot zooms out of the body.
  • The shot which zooms out of the body represents the blood pumping throughout the body possibly to do with adrenaline which reflects the given title of the film "Fight Club" where blood is expected.
  • The title was of bold, white font which exploded in sequence to the non-diegetic music and with each explosion it acted as catalyst for chemical reactions within the body similar to scientific experiments.
  • The static noise of the electricity in the body begins the non diegetic drum and bass music which connotes the title of the film "Fight Club" because of the beats of punches and fouls. The music almost has a mystery, spy effect which could suggest that the thrill in this film has to do with something criminal/illegal.
  • The flash effect on the titles awakens your ideas of the film and draws your attention to impress your views on the film right from the beginning.
  • The time spent whizzing through the body continues to make the audience curious of who's system does this body belong to and creates an element of mystery through a black-hole effect.
  • Eventually, the shot zooms right out and we then encounter beads of sweat on an extreme close up of a mans face which focuses on his glaring eyes which we then assume he is in danger.
  • The shot tracks his face from eyes downwards to his nose where deliberate detail is shown through his flaring nostrils and nose hair which suggest he is heavy breathing due to the stress. This also connotes his beads of sweat which appeared earlier on his forehead.
  • The zoom out, tracking shot peaks when it reveals the man has been held hostage with a gun in his mouth. This is the first shot of violence in the film and the non-diegetic music is then halted as the villain speaks however his identity is not revealed to build the tension.
  • The point of view shot from the villains position focuses on the distressed male character who's body language (sweat, anxious eyes) clearly shows hes under pressure and faced with an ultimatum.
  • The narrator takes control the diegetic music which can only be heard by the film audience. This is dramatic irony and lets the audience know more than the characters do about the plot. It also helps the audience understand the enigma of the film. Quotes such as "People always ask me if I know Tyler Durden" imply this is dramatic irony.
  • Theres a contrast between dramatic irony and the script when a timescale is kept by Tyler Durden constantly being efficient with time quoting "three minutes" and " two and a half minutes". Time is also a major part of the title sequence as the fast-paced music and quick montage of shots parallels how limited time is to the plot.
  • The shot then cuts to a medium close up of the gun in the narrators mouth which suggests the scene will soon progress into violence. The narrator remains calm which is ironic considering he is being faced with death.
  • The shot then cuts from medium close up to an over the shoulder shot where Tyler Durden is still not visible with the gun. However Tyler controls the narrative by overtaking the overvoice of the narrator. This shows that Tyler and the narrator equally share the changing of the plot.
  • Tyler is then out of focus while the audience remain to look and listen to the narrator as he continues the story.
  • Tyler is dressed in a strict, army style wearing khaki combat trousers, tank top and short hair style to show his efficiency on his particular mission to recreate history. His muscles are exaggerated to show his masculine strenghth which also connote with the use of the gun as his form of masculine backup.
  • The narrator gasps for air as the gun is pulled out of his mouth by Tyler which connotes that he is taking each breath as a reward for living and surviving Tylers psychotic ways.
  • An extreme close up of the narrators face turning as he becomes more intriguied by Tylers talks shows a change in interest.
  • The cut to the long shot of the city out of the window makes the audience aware of the location, timing and that Tylers plan centers a busy area. The reflection of Tyler and the narrator in the window implies they are ghosts in the eyes of the citizens as they will die for what they believe in.
  • The narrator is tied to a black chair and is hopeless in changing the enigma because he is laid back and watching Tyler as he unravels his plans. The narrator has been stripped to his boxers and top to suggest he is equal to every other man which in Fight Club the males were stripped so they had no background and the only reason they were there was to fight.
  • The pace is then built with the fast track/zoom down the building to define the location and hunt the bomb similar to what the police would do. The shot goes deep down into the underground where there are apparent illegal happenings such as Fight Club and the bombs. Until the search of bombs reaches its location and the bleeps highlight it is active and the scene is almost finished. The speed of the shot sequence connotes the little time left for the bomb to blow up.
  • Tyler quotes the time constantly to show this is the essence and motif of the title sequence. It shows that there isnt enough time to mess around and that his revolution is serious.
  • The extreme long shot of the room, characters and city gives the audience a feel of the atmosphere and the shots surroundings.
  • The shot of the narrator is cut and zooms into a medium shot then extreme close up to suggest he is worried of the outcome.
  • The narrators voice is dominated by the ticking of the bomb.

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