a2 media case study - the hunger games (genre)

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A2 Media studies, case study, The Hunger Games, genre


  • 1. The Hunger Games A film based off the first book in a trilogy. The story revolves around a 16 year old girl,Katniss Everdeen, whom by fate, and thensubsequently choice, is thrown into theHunger Games to fight to the death with 23other competitors. It is a treasure trove of representations ofboth genders

2. What genre is the The HungerGames? Science Fiction? Action/Adventure? Romance? Drama? Fantasy? 3. Poster AnalysisExplore the 3 posters on the next slide.Which genre codes do each rely on?Are they using the same genre codes? 4. Science Fiction The Repertoire ofElements (Johnston, 2011) Special effects or spectacle. Special effects which tread the line betweenrealism and fantasy. Futuristic set design and effects. New technology (robots and computers). Exploration of new (futuristic) spaces. Intertextual references to other science-fictionfilms. Destruction as a central visual motif. Which ofthese applyto THG? 5. Media Students bookNarrative and SF: the genres escapist elementsare often implied to lie simply in its audiovisualqualities, with FX, lavish costumes and setsevoking exotic future cityscapes andtechnologies... But escapism could also be saidto lie in the satisfactions of a genre whosenarrative shapings can offer powerful,incomprehensible enemies and technologies,which are often understood and efficientlycombatted. 6. SF, like other genre labels, conjures up broadexpectations in the areas of: ideological and cultural themes narrative patterns audiovisual signifiers (e.g. settings, costume,FX, objects, kinds of music, voices, editing,framing) 7. Action/Adventure The Repertoire ofElements 12A certificate, maximising youth audiences Often hybridised with Sci Fi/Romance High production values including CGI FX. Fast paced editing Classic Hollywood three act narrative structure Predictable chain of events cause and effect Single stranded, linear, closed narrative Dramatic non-diegetic sound More narrative action codes than enigma codes Clear binary oppositions Romantic sub-plot, humorous dialogue Use of close up/Eye-line matches through insert (POV) shots/High KeyLighting Dominant representation of gender: male/female action hero. Mulveysmale gaze (and also the contemporary female gaze can apply...) 8. Unconventional? The film style is interesting and, at times,unconventional. Ross has uses lots of hand-heldcamera - with some scenes almost resembling asocial realist film (like Trainspotting, Bullet Boy orFish Tank). A lot of dramatic scene play out withlittle or no non-diegetic music. Why? What is the effect on the audience? To enhance the realism and enable the audienceto experience what Katniss is experiencing. 9. Some scenes make use of a shallow depth of field, with thecamera's focus resembling a human eye. We see objects goingin and out of focus, giving the film a spontaneous and realistfeel. This seems at odds to the action/adventure's primary focuson narrative (rather than style).The film's use of mise-en-scene in scenes outside the Capitol(the futuristic centre of the imagined state of Panem) aredistinctly 'realist' in that District 12 resembles America duringthe Great Depression - and the games themselves take place in awoodland. Again, giving the film a sense of verisimilitude(realism) beyond average science fiction.However science fiction tropes are also apparent, e.g. use of CGI,a focus on futuristic technology and fashion. 10. Key genre terms Repertoire of elements Codes and conventions Tropes/clichs Mise-en-scene Iconography Hybrid genre (or hybridity)What doesThe HungerGames have incommon withSkyfall?