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Evaluation Candidate Number: 3204 Alex Thomson

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In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? As part of the initial research for our project we looked at a number of other media texts including The Departed(2006), In Bruges(2008), Sin City(2005) and a number of James Bond films, particularly Daniel Craig’s films(Casino Royale(2006) and Quantum of Solace(2008)) and to a lesser extent some of Pierce Brosnan’s(1995-2002) as well. We used a number of conventions from this research and combined many ideas from across them all. One of the main conventions we thought would be good to include was the use of black and white. We liked the visual style of Sin City and the inclusion of a black and white flashback in the opening of Casino Royale. This was something we wanted to include in our production. A convention we developed was using a minor for our victim. We felt this gave him a more vulnerable feel as all of the other characters are much older. This also widened our audience age group in terms of relatable characters. In lots of films, a stereotypical ‘victim’ character is usually a young attractive female. In Our film we used an young male character, as we hoped that he would relate to our target audience better and make the audience feel more involved with the character. This also allows gives a slight comedic edge to it, this is also shown in the clumsiness of the character as he trips over the sofa.

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How does your media product represent particular social groups? The main character in the film is a young teenage boy, he is represented as quite naive and innocent, and doesn't seem to know anything about the events surrounding his kidnapping, however, he recognises his captors when he opens the door, showing he may know more than he is letting on. He is also seen reading a newspaper prior to the attack. This again shows that he could be quite intelligent. The detectives are shown quite positively, and are dressed in smart clothes and look very presentable in their suits. They are, as most detective character types, initially unknowing about the attack. However, they are detectives, and so their job is to find that information out. The antagonists are represented in a very sinister and mysterious way, they are wearing dark clothes and are shown in lots of shots with their faces covered in shadow and their faces are not on the screen, adding to the mystique of their characters. This mysteriousness extends into their motives, which are also hidden from the viewer.

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Who would be the audience for your media product? The audience for my media product would be mainly male, 12 and above with some parents accompanying children under 12. This is shown on the film’s certificate, which is 12a This audience is the prolific film going age group and as such this film, aimed at them would hopefully gain high viewing figures. Crime, mystery, thriller and action are all genres that are popular with this age group. Films such as Taken(2008), Se7en(1995) and The Departed (2006) did well at the box office. The film also relates to this demographic with its main, ‘victim character’, he is around this age and so audience members could relate to him.

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How did you attract/address your audience? The main appeal of our film is the mysterious plot, due to the piece being an opening sequence we felt it was important for their to be a mystery that would get the audience hooked and want to continue to watch, this was also displayed in our feedback sheet, where most of the questionnaires came back with people wanting to watch more of it. We also wanted to have relatable characters so the audience could feel involved with them and enjoy the film more, obviously in the opening sequence, there wasn’t much time for character development, however the victim character was designed to be just a normal person, around the same age as our target audience, 12-18 males. This is an good target audience because the majority of the film going audience are this age. The DVD cover was designed to be a simple and cohesive accompaniment to the film and also attract an audience. I think this was accomplished by having a large, bold red font. This makes it stand out and as the font is the same as the rest of the film, it makes it recognisable to fans of the film.

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What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product? There has been a variety of different technologies that we used in order to create our production these included:• JVC digital film camera • Adobe Premiere Pro 1.5 video editing software• The Blog Apple Mac and related software( GarageBand, iDVD and iMovie) The film camera was easy to use and didn’t take long to learn, however I had had some limited experience in my own time and from the preliminary task so the learning curve was not as steep as it was with the other equipment. Adobe video editing software was another technology that I had some previous knowledge and experience using, so was able to expand on this and learn more advanced techniques The blog was another technology I’d never used before, but because it is a relatively simple website, I was able to learn how to upload posts, videos and pictures and eventually change the layout and design of the blog.The most useful technology I learned to use was the The Macs they are new to our school’s media department, and having never used a Mac before, it took me a while to be able to use it effectively. However, I spent time after school practising and trying out the different features available on them, and due to the user-friendliness of the system, it didn’t take long for me to be able to use it and the programs effectively and to a good standard.

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What kind of media institution might distribute your media product and why? Due to this being a small budget, British film, it is likely that the UK film council would fund and distribute the film. The UK film council, distributes money and grants to UK films from the lottery fund. It has been very successful and films in have invested in, on average return 5x as much money. The film, as most small budget UK films are, would also be released on digital screens. A regional distribution company, such as EM media, would also likely distribute our film, however Screen East is the local company so it would be them who would distribute it. They have also funded and distributed films such as Malice in Wonderland (2009) and the short film Blood on his hands(2007), which are of a similar genre.

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Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product? There were a few difficulties that we had with the production of the preliminary task, which we tried to rectify and improve on when it came to the main production piece.One of the problems we encountered with the preliminary task was the lack of planning we put into it. It was obvious from the absence of quality from the production that we had to plan the main task a lot move thoroughly in order to gain a good mark.Another important thing we learned was the importance of making sure our shots were correct with no mistakes before finishing the filming, during the preliminary task, we found that a number of the shots were unusable and we had to go back and re-shoot a number of them, this took time, time we couldn’t afford to lose when it came to the main task. The preliminary task also gave us a good opportunity to familiarize ourselves with the equipment and software we would be using for the main task. This was useful as we had had limited experience with the equipment before and it was good that were able to have this practice this before starting the main task.

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