Mise-En Scene The protagonist’s costume, grey t-shirt and black skinny jeans, connotes that he is punk as those clothes typically worn by people who follow the punk culture. The tattoos are iconic, as they are specifically associated with the straight edge culture.
Also the location used in the middle shot, shows dirty floors and graffitti all over the walls connoting it is a working class area because there is normally more graffitti seen in working class areas than middle class and so on. This could also connote that the main character is also someone who comes from a working class background because he doesn’t stand out, costume wise, with any of the other extras. The female character Mel, also wears similar clothing, black t-shirt and black leggings, while she represents ‘chavy’ essex girl, much like the character Mia, from Fish Tank (2009). We typecasted the actor because she had a similar look to that of Katie Jarvis’. The props which this character has, ciggarettes and drugs, connote she is a drug user, possibly a heavy one, which represent some teenagers/young adults from a working class background. This conforms to the negative stereotypes of youths all wanting to do drugs and smoke. Mel’s bedroom is small with a mattress on the floor, and plain white walls, this connotes that she doesn’t have a lot of money to spend of materialistic thing. This subverts the stereotype of typical teenage girls making their things personal and decorative. Sound The non-diegetic sound in the beginning relates directly to the straight edge culture. The lyrics themselves say “I’ve got straight edge” and this is seen all throughout when the main character is seen walking by the drunken girl, the two people dealing drugs and walking down the street. The music is also loud and has a very oppressing feel to it, connoting that the protagonist might have the same character traits. This conforms to the stereotype of punks/straight edge followers are quite aggressive and strongly opinionated people (straight edge followers more strongly opinionated towards drug users, smokers and drunks). All of the dialogue is dominated by him, with the other character Mel not even verbally responding to anything he says. His mode of address is very aggressive towards Mel, swearing at her when he sees her with the drugs. This again conforms to the stereotype of punks/ people who are a part of the straight edge movement in being aggressive about drug users. It also conforms to the stereotype of the male being the more dominant sex and females being the lesser.
The high angle shot of Mel slipping down the wall shows her defeat and vulnerability against the protagonist, this connotes that whatever relationship the two characters have between them, the protagonist plays the more dominant role. This again conforms to the stereotype that males are more dominant and women follow after.
Editing The titles for the main actors all had a distorted effect on them. This shows the aggravated nature of the protagonist and the current energetic atmosphere set up by the music. The protagonist also takes up the majority of the screen time, and with what scenes both characters share, he is the more opposing character on screen. The typography is a simple white on black Helvetica font. The font reiterates the meaning of straight edge in a way, the simple rules of keeping away and not using drugs, drinking alcohol or smoking drugs. Melâ€™s handling of the drugs, is edited, through the use of jump cuts, so that it looks that it has been done in quick succession. This effect connotes that she has had experience with handling drugs and is confident in using them.