21 Jump Street 1
Convention: Graphics (Directors) The graphics in this shot denote the directors names. The typography is very basic as it is in bold, white, block lettering. This represents the directors as very confident in their decisions in the making of this film. The background action connotes that they were maybe very adventurous and creative in the directions given to the cast. This representation created means that the audience could expect to see many unique, exciting, explosive scenarios within the film. This communicates that the institution may have a big budget for this film as they have the ability to allow the directors to be very creative and they have the resources to do so. Leading to a further connotation that this film may be produced by a major production company or a subsidiary of one of the conglomerates. The genre here is established as an â€˜actionâ€™ film. This is due to the explosion behind the graphics, which connotes that something major happened to create this explosion, meaning the film must be quite action packed. This also slightly establishes the style of the film in terms of mise-en-scene, as the explosion in the background connotes that there will be a lot of explosives used in the film and that the colour design will potentially be very dark.
Convention: Themes & Ideology This shot from the opening sequence of ‘21 Jump Street’ denotes two men, one of them holding the other. The uniform these men are wearing connotes that they are police officers, as they are wearing dark uniform with badges on and they have pouches around they’re waists containing equipment police officers need to carry out they’re duty. The fact that police officers are involved connotes that a theme in this film is ‘crime’. This represents police officers as down to earth people as they are messing around and having a laugh, proving that they are not serious all the time. However it also represents them as quite irresponsible as they are messing around whilst on duty, so crime could be happening around them and they are not paying attention or focusing on what they’re being paid to do. This creates the audience expectations that there will be a lot of criminals involved committing petty crimes and or more serious crimes. This communicates institutional information, as the institutions involved may want to portray police in a more fun light, showing that they are like every day people. This establishes that the genre may be ‘action/comedy’ as police are there to sort out criminals bringing out a sense of action, but as we see in this shot, they are having fun with it. Connoting that the action and crime involved will be quite light hearted and demonstrate the theme of crime in a more humorous way. The props used in the mise-enscene help to establish the style of the film, as through the costumes in this shot we know that there will be a lot of props used that relate to police officers and crime.
Convention: Graphics (production credits) This shot denotes the production credits and the names of the producers who produced the film. Behind these graphics there are bundles of American dollars. This connotes that these two producers have taken the risk to invest a lot of money in the film themselves, so they clearly have a genuine belief that the film will gain a good box office and become a box office hit. It could also connote that the film cost a lot to produce or that the main aim of this production is to make as much money as possible. The American dollars also connotes that the producers are American and the production companies involved are also American and they are probably therefore a part of a Hollywood conglomerate as they have a lot of money. This represents America as a very wealthy place for the film industry. From this the audience expect to see a film containing a lot of expensive elements, maybe stunts, etc. This communicates the institutional information that these producers have invested a lot of time, effort and especially money in the film. The genre of crime could also be established through this shot as the crime being committed could be for money. This connotes that the mise-en-scene, editing, camera and sound will be used to the best of quality, as they can afford to make each element of production very good. So the style of this film will be of very expensive taste.
Convention: Non-Linear start (00:42) This screen grab shows a non linear start as one of the characters have gone from messing around with his policing partner outside in an earlier shot, to now being alone in what seems to be a school as he is in front of a white board. This shows that the opening sequence has not been edited in chronological order and is therefore a non-linear start. This non-linear start represents the life in which the two male main characters live, as it seems pretty fast paced and thrilling as police officers. It also represents that in their lives things take place quickly and that there is no time for rest. This non-linear start creates the audience expectation that all of the action that happens will take place quickly and they will probably assume that there will be a lot of action. This non-linear start establishes the action/comedy genre as the jump to and from different scenes makes the film seem more chaotic, meaning there is a lot of action involved in the film and the fact that one of the main characters is standing in front of a white board with the word ‘boobs’ written on it and his hands up in the air looking pleased with himself connotes that he is quite a funny guy and is up for a laugh. The style in this shot is established through the mise-en-scene and the camera language, as the word ‘boobs’ written on the whiteboard shows us that this is not a serious film and its actually quite funny. This is also supported by the camera language as a mid shot is used to allow us as the audience to see his body language – his arms up in the air. This is not typical behaviour in school, so it connotes that this action is supposed to create a sense of humour within the audience. The sound also helps to establish the action/comedy genre as he shouts ‘booyah’ in this shot. Connoting that he is not vandalising the school board but is instead trying to be funny.
Convention: Montage This shot denotes a lady in the air and a lot of fire behind her. This shot is a part of the montage used in this opening sequence, there are many different scenes from the film edited together. This represents the place in which they live as very dangerous and chaotic. This montage engages the audience and keeps them entertained, because of the action scenes being edited together they expect to see more of this throughout the film and therefore keep watching it. This shot in particular connotes that the institutions involved in the production of this film had a lot of money to make it as the woman must have been a stunts person that they had to hire and creating that sort of fire would have required quite a lot of money. Also the use of a montage meant that they had to have lots of interesting clips to edit together so they must have spent a lot of money in the production stage of film making to be able to produce exciting action packed scenes. This helps to establish the action/comedy genre as the fire connotes that the scene this shot is from must have been very fast as people could have been running or dying from the fire etc. But on the other hand the woman is dressed in white boots and very little clothing which could connote that it is not supposed to be interpreted in a serious way. The mise-enscene really captures the audience as the fire has them engulfed in the film with shock and amazement. The camera language in this shot also helps to establish the style of the film as this shot is filmed at a slight low angle, watching the girl fall to the ground as the fire rises. This makes the film seem less serious as there is no diegetic sound from the girl. The sound is just purely upbeat music in this shot connoting that this is not to be taken seriously and the girl is in no real danger.
Convention: Graphics (cast) This screen grab denotes a graphic of a cast member who happens to be a main character. The graphics are styled in a gold typography in block letters. The typography connotes that this character who stars in the film was probably paid a lot of money as he is perhaps an actor known globally. This represents this character as very bright, bold and brave. The fact that the graphic appears only naming one character connotes that he is a very important character in this film. The gold bullets in the background also support this representation of this character and connote that he may use a lot of bullets in the film, they also represent him as a strong. This creates the audience expectation that there will maybe be a lot of violence in the film revolving bullets and they will expect this man to be a hero like character. The gold, block lettering communicates the institutional information that the companies involved in the production of this film are wealthy and have a lot of power in the film industry. Connoting that they could be a part of the conglomerates in Hollywood. The background image of bullets establishes the action genre as guns are commonly used within action films, as they heighten the impact of fear within the audience.
Convention: Graphics (starring cast) This screen grab denotes another graphic that says, ‘with Ice Cube’. Behind the graphic there is a police car light. The fact that this character has a graphic on his own connotes that he is also an important character within the narrative, because it also says ‘with’ it connotes that he is very well known in the real world and could be a marketing point to sell the film to the audience and keep them engaged. Through this screen grab this character is represented as perhaps one of the criminals within the film because of the sirens. It also connotes that maybe the police are looking for him but still have not yet found him. This screen grab also represents the place in which the story is set as quite dangerous as there are a lot of uncaught criminals out there. This creates the audience expectations to see a lot of action packed car chases with police and criminals and a lot of disruption caused by the criminals. Knowing that Ice Cube is a well known rapper in the real world, the institutions involved in the making of this film must have had big casting budgets to pay him to play a part in the film as I imagine it would have been very expensive to hire him. The sirens in the background image establish the genre of action as police cars move fast, so the audience will have to be fully engaged to keep up with the action happening. This establishes the style of the film as the image in the background of the sirens makes us think that the film will revolve around police and criminals. The colour design in the mise-en-scene involves a lot of red, which connotes blood and death.
Convention: Introduction of main characters This shows an introduction of the main characters as they stand side by side. We as the audience know they’re the main characters as they appear at various other points in the opening sequence, either individually or together. But this screen grab is the only moment in the opening sequence where we see both characters stood together clearly. This shot denotes two males looking at someone/something, one short and one tall. This shot represents these characters as quite immature as one of them is wearing a baseball cap back to front and the other is wearing a childlike hat, both of these styles are youthful and they seem to be men. This shot makes the audience expect a lot of youthful activities as they look like they are quite fun and vibrant people. A part of the genre – comedy is established through the dumb speechless looks on they’re faces, this is supposed to be comical and the costumes they’re in suggest that they’re persona's should be found funny. The style of the film is established through the mise-en-scene as they costumes they’re wearing suggest that were not supposed to take them or the content of the film seriously, that its all a bit light hearted. The camera language also establishes the style of the film, as the mid shot used in this specific shot allow us, the audience to see their facial expressions and they’re stiff body language, also connoting that this film is comical not anything to be thought too deeply of.
Convention: Animation Here this screen grab denotes an orange and red background with stars and monkey like animals on. This represents the characters as comical, as monkeys are typically thought of as quite dumb animals and therefore they are a representation of the characters, connoting that they too are quite dumb. From this animation the audience will expect to here and see lots of jokes and funny elements within the film, whether they be intentionally or unintentionally. This communicates institutional information that the production companies involved in the making of the film may specialise in filmmaking within the genre â€“ comedy. This animation establishes the action/comedy genre as the stars connote a thrill and action and the monkeys connote fun, jokes and games and the dumb main characters. The style is established in this shot through the colour design in the mise-en-scene through the bright colours which connote a light hearted feel to the style of the whole film.
This is an analysis of the conventions used in the opening sequence of 21 Jump street.