Week 1 : Film Language 1

Identity – A short film analysis (Homework)

What is the key message of the short film? What is the premise/theme?

I believe the key message of the film in the simplest sense is to “be yourself”. Not who society expects you to be or who your peers expect you to be. Don’t live your life hiding behind fake personas.

What is the main conflict in the story? Describe the type of conflict and how it occurs?

The main conflict in the story is an inner conflict within the main character. The film shows her struggles with fitting in and not feeling comfortable to express her true self and instead hiding behind a metaphorical ‘mask’. The film portrays that this has been an ongoing conflict and it is not until she reaches an epiphany when comparing herself to the slaves in Plato’s cave or pawns in chess that she decides to address the issue.

What is the structure of the narrative? (Please define the main steps)


The events within the film that set up the narrative are the moments in class when she comes to realization that everyone (including herself) is hiding behind fake personas and conforming to the standards of society and not expressing their true selves.


The development in the narrative show the main character bottling up these feelings of not belonging and isolation until it becomes too much and she ‘breaks’, not only mentally but physically as a piece falls off her mask.


At this point she has a decision to make, either to leave the bathroom with a broken mask or no mask at all. She decides to free herself from these feelings of restriction and not belonging. Her resolution is to leave the bathroom without her mask and accept herself for who she is and to lead the way for others to do the same.

What is the moment of climax? The moment of high tension, when the solution to the problem is now in sight?

The highest point of tension in the film is when her mask breaks from her fall in the bathroom. At this point she knows she only has two options; leave the bathroom mentally ‘broken’ or free herself from the conforms of society and let everyone see her true self.

What part of the story told by the movie was powerful? Why?

I believe the most powerful part of the story is when she decides to leave the bathroom without her mask and let others see her for who she is. Despite the judging reactions from others at her school, she continues to walk with pride as she finally feels free.

How does the film end? Was everything resolved? How would you change the ending?

The film ends with the main character walking through crowded hallways of the school without her mask as bystanders make judgement. I believe an alternate ending could have involved other students following in her footsteps and beginning to take off their masks, relating to the story of Platos, the caves and the first released prisoner who’s task is to free the others.

Does the world of the film work like the real world?

I believe the film does strongly relate to the real world, especially in a school scenario where your persona is considered to be everything, and people will do anything to fit in. A very powerful piece in this film is where one of the students is seen removing one of their masks to reveal another underneath before going to join a different group, representing the different personalities they have to portray in front of different people.

How do they edit/present various parts of the film?

I think starting the film with her resolution and the narration of “today I found the truth” and effect of rewinding backwards helps the viewer to follow her journey towards freedom and the truth. Otherwise the film could be perceived as rather confusing.

What is the music’s purpose in the film? How does it direct our attention within the image? How does it shape our interpretation within the image?

At the start of the film the sound helps the viewer identify that the film is playing in reverse. The music throughout the middle of the film is quite repetitive giving the viewer the sense that this is just like every other day at the students school, there is no suspense, no action or mystery. However when she is sitting in the cafeteria the music changes and becomes suspenseful and starts to cut in and out with strange noises giving the sense of something happening mentally with the character.

Is there any graphic elements in the film? Describe them?

A graphic element I noticed incorporated into the film was a poster quoted with “this is what beauty looks like” printed on a photo of a woman with a yellow mask. This was used to represent societies profound expectations on beauty.

A Place like this – A Short Film Analyse (Class Activity)

What do you think the film is going to be about?

I assumed by the title this film would be describing or admiring a place of beauty from someones personal perspective. Though from this title it could also be depicted as describing a place of hate and resentment, the title does not give too much away.

Where is the setting of the moving image?

This short film is set in Alex Jenkins back garden.

How is sound used through the film, Does it change?

The sound in this film is very nature orientated. The ambient sounds of birds chirping, water flowing and leaves rustling. The sound stays consistent throughout the film and really helps represent the peace Alex finds at home in his beautiful garden.

What kind of pace does the moving image have?

The pace of this film is very slow and peaceful. There is very minimal movement throughout, only very gentle pans thoughout Alex’s garden.

What kind of colours are present in the video?

The colors in this video revolve around nature, with an abundance of fresh green colors throughout Alex’s garden. With the use of these colors and the slow pace of the film, the viewer is given a strong sense of peace and calmness.

Describe the use of motion graphics

There is minimal use of motion graphics throughout this film, I could only identify the use of fading in when graphical text is displayed.

What kind of transitions are used between shots?

The majority of the transitions throughout the film are straight cuts. There are sequences at the beginning and end which make use of a dip to black transition before text is eased into the screen.

Anything else?

I think the cuts were a bit harsh/abrupt for such a calming peaceful movie, I think the use of some more fading or crossfades could have contributed to the calming presence of the film. I also noticed the use of close ups to capture body language as Alex talked this way we were able to easily identify his emotions, like when he was recalling his colleagues final words to him.

When the fat girl gets skinny – A Short Film Analyse

What do you think the film is going to be about?

Where is the setting of the moving image?

How is sound used through the film, Does it change?

What kind of pace does the moving image have?

What kind of colours are present in the video?

Describe the use of motion graphics

What kind of transitions are used between shots?

Anything else?

Hyperlapse Experiment

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