Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Hunger Games Trailer - Part 3 - Cinematography

As many of you know, I've been on the fence about how The Hunger Games movie will be. I think the trailer is yet another signifier of this love-hate relationship. Thus, below will be, first, the trailer itself for your viewing pleasure and, second, my comprehensive look at what works and what doesn't, in my opinion, taking into account the book's technicalities and descriptions. This post will be distributed among the rest of the week, presenting a pro and con each day.

I'll just ramble on with this one too mostly because I didn't find anything wrong. So they're all pros today! :) Isn't it exciting?

Cinematography is a very influential thing for me. Mostly because I went through a phase when I wanted more than anything to be a filmmaker. I kind of still do... But anyway, The Hunger Games does not seem to lack anything that other movies lack. After all, it's pretty much down to a science over there in Hollywood.

First, the camera stability should be of note. When you view the trailer, note how often and when the camera shakes. During those tender moments that are still so emotional, you can notice a quiet bob of the camera. In my opinion, this helps to bring out the real-life aspects of the moment and keep continuity with the more vivacious parts that are filmed. In those parts, the camera is quite shaky. Notice during the bloodbath, the reaping. Marvelous. The concrete stability also should be mentioned. The key points being Peeta and Katniss on the roof and then the quiet morning hunt with Katniss and Gale. It represents those quiet, delicate moments that make up the most down-to-earth times, don't you think?

Overlay of other factors in the screenshots are also to be noted. During the reaping is the prime example of this. For the effect of all the kids, they walk right in front of the camera and Katniss comforting Prim. I think that's the only part in the trailer, but it's very effective.

And we mustn't forget sequencing. Notice the transitions that are so apparent. The reaping. The rapid-fire back-to-back of the blood bath and the training. The gentle appearance of Rue. They all had a part in that. The arrow flying in the training? Again, transitions that are so very effective. The training portion would probably be the best example. Paired with the acting in these shots, they're amazing.

The sweeping cinematography, too. Let's just comment on that. I'm talking the hovercraft in the forest, the train, the reaping, the Capitol, and I'm sure the Cornucopia in the arena (I'm so excited. What a great idea, Ms. Collins!) For some reason, I keep thinking about both Twilight and the Chronicles of Narnia movies. They both had the same thing going, but with book stories like this, it has to be done for the whole effect. It must be vogue in Hollywood, too. I've seen it a lot lately. It's needed.

Last but not least, let's all remember the blue tint that the (I don't know which one it was) Twilight movies had. It was like some overlay, editing room fiasco, I bet. I think HG has this going for them too. For an example, take a peak at the reaping (again). Do you see the sun is shining but the picture's so dull? I'm not sure what to think of it just yet. What do you guys think about this idea? On one hand, it may set the tone of the movie. Like a gray-sky day, which is the tone of Katniss throughout. She doesn't know how to feel; she just does what's needed to be done. But is it needed? Will they use this tactic differently in the other movies, setting a different stage for each? We'll just have to wait and see.

Well, that just about wraps it up. Tomorrow, I'll be covering the "Effectiveness of Movie Marketing:  The Hunger Games Trailer." Be looking out for that! :)

'Til next time!

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