Mise en scene is a stylistic form of filming that is French for “staging the shot”, which is referring to everything in front of the camera. Director Kurosawa understood this style and used it in High and Low (Kurosawa, 1962). He used several Mise en scene techniques such as closed composition, space manipulation, and lighting to compliment the crime thriller story.
Closed composition is one of the main themes that Kurosawa uses throughout the movie. He chooses to keep the scenes tight and in close quarters mostly. This is seen predominately in the first half on the movie. Here the action takes place in Mr. Gondo’s house on top of a hill. The viewer has very little idea that there is much of a world outside the house. This idea is supported when Mr. Gondo has to close all the drapes in the house to prevent the kidnapper from looking into the house. This gives a mood and feeling of anxiety from being enclosed. Also, shots of the house sitting on top of the hill give the feeling of loneliness. This feeling is repeated in the bullet train sequence where the quarters are much smaller. The viewer is somewhat relieved with the view of the outside, but because of the close quarters and the sense of a speeding train, it does not allow the viewer to enjoy the openness the windows provide. A scene that clearly shows the Mise en scene style is the next day comes and Mr. Gondo must now decide whether to pay the ransom or not. We see and hear the argument with Mr. Gondo and Mrs. Gondo, with Mr. Aoki crying to the far left of the scene. Soon the dialog ends and we see Mr. Aoki still to the far left, Mrs. Gondo with Jun in the middle, and Mr. Gondo to the far right. Clearly separating them are the detectives who are standing silently with their heads down. The placement of the detectives manipulates the space in the scene into thirds. It also helps in emphasizing the differences between the three characters regarding what should be done about getting Mr. Aoki’s son back from the kidnapper.
In the scene where two of the detectives find the man and woman dead, we see the detectives enclosed in the window of the house where, we the viewers are looking in. This is the closed form composition, which is used to help focus the viewers’ attention on the characters. In doing so, the characters’ surprise reactions...
... middle of paper ...
...arly being used as a separation between Mr. Gondo and the police. That, with the combination of the lack of furniture, along with the predominance of white created by the light in the house enforces the tone of emptiness and loneliness that the viewer feels.
Finally, the last few scenes show desperation by the kidnapper. Mr. Gondo and the kidnapper are sitting across from each other in a closed off room. The room gives the feeling of being trapped along with the wire mesh and window separating them. Here the viewer can see the reflection of whom the character is talking to so that we can see the expression from what is being said. Plus by being in such a small room, the emotions seem to be increased as the kidnapper releases his own emotions to Mr. Gondo.
We have seen that Kurosawa used many techniques of the mise en scene throughout High and Low. The use of the closed stylistic form along with the lighting and space manipulation of characters and objects help increase the intense emotion of the film as well as help the viewer focus on key points and characters. This ultimately moved the story forward and complimented the crime thriller categorization of the film.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- "Mrs. Robinson, you are trying to seduce me," says Benjamin Braddock (Dustin Hoffman). The Graduate, directed by Mike Nichols in 1967 is an influential satire/comedy film about a recent East Coast college graduated who finds himself alienated and aimless in the changing, social and sexual general public of the 1960s, and questioning the values of society. The theme of the film is of an innocent and confused youth who is exploited, mis-directed, seduced (literally and figuratively) and betrayed by a corrupt, self-indulgent, and discredited older generation (that finds stability in “plastics”) that I found to be quite clear and understanding, while also capturing the real spirit of the times... [tags: film analysis, movie analysis]
2034 words (5.8 pages)
- When a technological divergent can teleport an individual into the past and reconstruct the previous time settings, a historical relation is explored as an American cultural context through the classical creation of the cinema. As a non-traditional presentation of a significant text, the film’s viewpoint is studied over the discourse of beauty, travelling through time in a motion picture captured on film. The science fiction comedy film released in 1985, “Back to the Future”, produced by Robert Zemeckis, tells the story of a teenage boy named Marty, who is navigated across space-time to the year 1955, where he encounters his future parents and unexpectedly, his mother becomes romanticall... [tags: Science Fiction, Comedy Film, Film Analysis]
1217 words (3.5 pages)
- ... Ocean is now clean shaven, wearing a suit and can now be seen as much more clearly with the high-key lighting showing all of his facial expressions. The colors that were used in the setting gives a welcoming feel and the unnatural/artificial light lightens up the whole scene. Right after that shot, the next shot still has the camera fixed on Ocean walking into a casino floor. This points out that the casino contains a lot of wealthy rich people spending money on slot machines and various other gambling games.... [tags: facial expressions, heist film]
1097 words (3.1 pages)
- Hollywood itself plays an enormous role on how we as a nation see our society. We life for the dramas, love stories, fairytales, and action pact block-busters we so desperately need to observe every weekend. However, the larger question is, how much of Hollywood’s film making is actual fact compared to what the public wants to see. Throughout Robert Bulman’s Hollywood Goes to High School, we can see how film making can alter the vision of public and private education. Bulman analyzes how films on the poor urban schooling, middle-class suburban schooling, and high elite private schooling can sometimes mislead society’s perception on education.... [tags: Film Analysis]
2293 words (6.6 pages)
- Indisputably, Tim Burton has one of the world’s most distinct styles when regarding film directing. His tone, mood, diction, imagery, organization, syntax, and point of view within his films sets him apart from other renowned directors. Burton’s style can be easily depicted in two of his most highly esteemed and critically acclaimed films, Edward Scissorhands and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Burton ingeniously incorporates effective cinematic techniques to convey a poignant underlying message to the audience.... [tags: film analysis, movies, cinematography]
933 words (2.7 pages)
- The songs that were played at the concert were Low Rider by War and Soul Sacrifice by Santana. Low Rider by War is composed with a piano, guitar, hand percussion, a drum kit, and most importantly, the cowbell. The song is in the key of G major and uses only one chord, which is G. In our musical performance we used the F blues scale to improvise each of our solos. This is one of the easiest songs I have played because it only used one chord. This melody is cool because with mix of the mallet percussion and drums, it sounds almost sounds identical to the original recording.... [tags: song, percussion, group]
620 words (1.8 pages)
- Scene Analysis of Alfred Hitchcock’s Film Shadow of a Doubt Alfred Hitchcock’s film Shadow of a Doubt is a true masterpiece. Hitchcock brings the perfect mix of horror, suspense, and drama to a small American town. One of the scenes that exemplifies his masterful style takes place in a bar between the two main characters, Charlie Newton and her uncle Charlie. Hitchcock was quoted as saying that Shadow of a Doubt, “brought murder and violence back in the home, where it rightly belongs.” This quote, although humorous, reaffirms the main theme of the film: we find evil in the places we least expect it.... [tags: Movie Film Essays]
1253 words (3.6 pages)
- Analysis of Halloween Film Trailer I have decided to look at a trailer that was filmed in 1978 called Halloween directed by John Carpenter. The purpose of the trailer is to tease the audience into wanting to see the film but also to identify genre through conventions and create opinions in the audiences mind. The genre of my trailer is cross generic horror; appealing to a wide target audience. The horror genre is represented through the scenes involving blood and violence. Conventions of the trailer include the length, use of settings, characters, music, sound effects, and colours.... [tags: Papers]
588 words (1.7 pages)
- Analysis of Film Lawn Dogs The first thing we notice in the beginning of the film is that it is dawn, and it is set in the suburbs. We are introduced to a small, middle class village, where there are large houses with huge lawns being watered with sprinklers. The lawns are neatly cut, to add emphasis to the middle class neighbourhood and that the people living there are quite wealthy, there is even a sense that the neighbours are in competition with each other and are constantly trying to out-do eachother.... [tags: Papers]
639 words (1.8 pages)
- Film Analysis of The Matrix The Matrix is a movie about computers taking over the world and how one man changes everything. The opening shot is a shot of computer generated pixels, next there is a reverse zoom shot which reveals the word ‘searching’. A computer sound is then played, which sounds like something is downloading. The reverse shot is than cut, which shows Keanu Reeves, known as Neo, lying down on his head, looking pale whilst listening to music.... [tags: Papers]
747 words (2.1 pages)