Tuesday, 24 April 2012

How is representation of age constructed in this extract?

As the extract commences, we see a long establishing shot of what seems like a pub. The camera then pans down onto two old men probably in their 60’s talking to each other while having a drink. We can instantly see from the mise en scene of their costumes, that they are both in formal wear wearing a suit, shirt and a jumper. This is a stereotypical way to portray the elderly, and also the facial hair of the man on the left is also an indication and representation of age. Secondly, the dialogue between these two also represents age as they are talking about their pensions and talking about spending their money and going to live somewhere else.

After the screen transitions into a long almost birds eye shot of a people including one of the old men looking at a screen with a picture of a man on it. Again age is represented by what they are wearing, the two men on the sofa are both approximately in their late 20’s early 30’s, are casually dressed. Then we see a medium shot of one of the men sitting down, and the way he is sitting on the sofa indicates age as he is lounged back and feet up acting casual, this again is not something a much older person would do. Also we can see that the eyeline between the old man and he people sitting down is not level, he is clearly looking down at them and they are clearly looking up at him, this technique shows a slight hint of age as they look up to him, and the shots of the old man looking down on them shows that he is more dominant and at a higher status to them which all revolves around the main theme of age.

In the beginning at 3 minutes the dialogue represents age as they are taking about computers, cue cards, and how they are new and never used to be there in their times. This is very typical of older people as they usually talk about things that we have now and mentioning that we didn’t have the when i was your age. This is a clear representation of age as the dialogue suggests.

After the other old man calls his daughters employer  ‘a bastard’ the shot transitions into the the formally dressed old man with a remote in his hand having put the image of whom the other man was talking about on the screen. We figure out now that he is some kind of detective wanting to capture that man. The editing shows that he is the potential leader in that investigation, as we assume as him being a leader that he much older. The use of editing particularly, in this section really put the point across of the representation of age.

Overall, i think there are a few elements within this clip that do represent age such as mise en scene, dialogue and camera angles and shots. However, i think that the use of mise en scene is the most protruding in this extract and is the element in which i see occurring the most in the clip.

Representations of age, focusing on Tony and his dad in skins

Representations of age, focusing on Tony and his dad in skins

At the start of the extract we see a close up of tony’s face and it zooms out and we see his duvet cover of a naked female and male. This depicts a representation of age as these days young teenagers are more associated with things related to the bed cover more than any other generation, such as sex. By this use of mise – en - scene we can clearly get an idea how age is represented in this extract. The next thing we see is tony get out of his bed wearing just boxers. Again older people wear proper night wear, on the other hand teenage boys usually wear only boxers, hence another representation of age. Secondly, tony gets up and we observe a medium shots of him doing bench press ups, clearly he wants to get in shape as we see him looking at himself in the mirror, moreover, it is again typical of a teenage boy within ages from 15-19 who workout and desire a so called ‘beach body.’

Additionally, when see tony’s dad come into the scene, he is shouting, half naked, swearing and angry. It looks like that tony’s dad was in the bathroom doing something and came out because he heard the loud music. We can see buy his appearance that he is old because he has a lot of chest hair and also has quite a bit of hair loss on his head. In relation, he has a short temper which is typical of parents in their mid 50’s. Also tony is being rebellious and ignorant as he refuses his dads order to turn the volume down. This shows a representation of age because he is immature and doesn’t listen to his parents.  We then see another rebellious act as tony locks the bathroom door and escapes through the window knowing that his dad is waiting to go in. The repeated uses of rebellious acts clearly depict the idea of age in this extract.

Advancing, we see tony and his sister both at the table eating breakfast, tony’s sister is in school uniform and tony is in non uniform which could indicate that he is attending college/sixth form and hence the age of 16-19. We then see a medium shot from the side of tony’s face with the father in the background in the kitchen. Tony doesn’t even look at his dad again showing rellion typical of a teenager. The we see the eye line of the father who is higher in the frame looking down, this shows his status in the household as dominant therefore showing he is the oldest in the family. When the father goes into the cupboard under the sink, we see a close up of his bottom, and we see something stereotypically known as a ‘ builder bum.’ This shows that he doesn’t care about how he looks and is not concerned of what other might think, this is showing binary oppositions and we have two complete opposites, tony the teenager is concerned about the way he looks and the older father not caring about how he looks. When the father looks for the drill and says he cant find it, tony gives a smirk, this again shows that he is rebellious and wants to keep annoying his father, again its stereotypically teenagers between the ages of 16-19 who always get on their parents nerves and this is clearly seen through out the first four and a half minutes of this extract.

How does the extract construct representations of age?

In this extract of skins, age is represented is several different ways by use of dialogue, camera shots etc. Below are mentined of how exactly age is representated.

Firstly, we see the skater as reckless and a dardevil. We see this is the camera work and editing come together when we look at the shot where the skater is on top of the hill, which is clearly densley populated with cars, trucks and pedestrians. We observe a close up of his face, he seems to in concentration about something or decision making, " Should i skate down this hill?" " Could i make it,?" These are the kind of questions that are revolving through his head. Instantly, we then see a pov of him looking down the hill observing the potential dangers and what she going to be up against. Finally, it ends with another close up of his face depicting a smirk, which then indicates that he has made his decision, he will skate down the hill.This sort of dardevil act and way of thinking clearly depicts and represents age as this is sterotypical of young people, perhaps the teenagers.

The soundtrack especially the dialogue shows his rebellion. We see this when we hear him swear after reading his text. This is the very first dialogue that has come from this character, and for that to be his first impression really makes us think that hes a typical teenager. Moreover, when the 3 boys are having thier conversations at the table, one of them says" Its got potential this day, its pregnant." That again is a typical remark a teenager would say. he use of dialogue in this extract demonstartes age.

The skaters steriotypical teenage nature is reinforced by the mise - en - scene in the extract. We can obviously see the cannabis leaf print on his converses and the print on his skateboard. This gives an indication that he perhaps smokes cannabis and deals with illegal drugs. This is also another representation of age and its the younger generation that are into drugs and also displaying signs of it, it also enhances the rebellious nature of him. Additionally, he is wearing casual clothes with not many layers and also wearing a hat, this is all fuses together and represents age along with the factors mentioned above.

We also witness binary oppposites within the extract between the young teenagers and the police man. We first see that the policeman is about to tuck into an icecream, this particular scene brings a slight humour as the policeman is not represented as serious, this perhaps indicates that the audience is placed on the side of the teenagers. Again we see when the skater makes the policeman fall off his bike and resulting in his icescream falling onto his crotch, this again shows the humour side of things and also indicates that the skater doesnt care about whaty the police have to say or even the law. When the skater gets off his skateboard to go meet his freinds, in the same shot but in the background, we see the policeman uncontrollably fall into the garbage truck, again with the humour and again showing that these teenagers do not care about the police, and the way that the camera does not have a seperate shot of the policeman falling into the truck again puts the audience on the side of the teenager.

The editing also playes apart in this when we see the 3 angle slow motion shot of the skater skater over the construction workers in the air. This shows off the skill of the skater and also his rebellion as he is skating where he shouldnt. These shots demonstrate action match as all 3 shots show him at different stages throughout his jump, this again adds to show his rebellion and and skill. The editing has showed that he is taking risks, interms of getting caught by the police, told off by the workers and even being injured in doing so. This is an accurate representation of the younger generation, again the 'daredevil' approach witnessed in this extract.

Overall, the main elements such as camera work, editing, soundtrack etc, have combined and individually portrayed how age is represented in this extract.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

'How does the extract construct representations of social class?'

Within the extract, the image of the working class has been conveyed through the use of setting, characters and through the actual content of the extract itself.

This shot on the right is a long establishing shot of an outer suburb estate. We can see the little play area for children and also the houses and community in which this play area resides in. This constructs the idea of the working class as these houses are small terraced houses and by the
amount of greenery around houses indicates that this estate is away from the built up areas.

Secondly, by observing this high angle shot of the father on the floor after being hit by one of his children, we instantly think, what kind of parents raised these children? What kind of society have they been brought up in? These show a negative impact on the working class as the children are disrespectful.
After the dad moves/ shuffles, the children run away from him. This high angled shot shows the children running out of the back door into the garden and out onto the street. When looking at the garden itself, it’s very small and cramped. Additionally, there is household rubbish outside and surprisingly a car which i think is broken and not used
    This instantly depicts elements of the working class as they perhaps not are able toafford to dispose of their  car;    also  they are presented to being lazy as they cannot be bothered 
    to get rid of the rubbish in their garden.

Negative representations on the working class may be seen in this shot as it's showing the community burning and most importantly vandalising a car. Members of the community seem to be drinking alcohol, throwing cans at the car. This illustrates   the stereotypical anti-social behaviour of the working class. On the other hand, the reaction of the public to when the police arrive says it all. They do not care they are doing something wrong and are happy doing it

The title of the extract comes when the camera is on the scene of the fire. The title 'Shameless' could perhaps have relation to the family with the disrespectful children and the community on a whole; it maybe puts the point across that they have no shame. 

This shot shows a young man swearing at the police as they arrive. This shows the level of respect he has and also gives us an idea into what social class he is in. This is again stereotypical behaviour; moreover, the people in this shot are wearing ‘chavy’ clothes which portray a negative image on the working class.

Overall, the TV show 'Shameless' reveals negative representations of the working class due to the title itself, the actions they do i.e. burning the car which comes to the attention of the police, and lastly, the setting of which takes place in a small, rough outer suburb estates. However many may argue against this as they feel that the slow music takes away the seriousness of the visuals and also the voiceover which tells the story and describes characters. Additionally, the music is soft which eliminates the seriousness of the visuals, along with a voiceover which describes the characters with fondness, lastly the whole community coming together as one around a fire enjoying themselves could be seen as representation of their friendship and togetherness as a community.