Published on: Mar 3, 2016
Transcripts - Nadine miseenscene.2
WHAT IS MISE-EN-SCENE?
Mise-en-scene is a French word meaning placing on the stage. It
refers to everything within the frame of the shot including:
• Facial expressions/Body language
• Visual effects.
Settings and props indicate to the audience the location and time period
Time – When does it take place?
• The past?
• The present?
• The future?
Location – Where is it set?
• Exterior or interior?
• Natural or stylized?
• Location or backdrop?
• Period – When is it set?
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920)
The scenery is highly stylized. It is
not realistic but it helps convey the
mood of the film.
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
(1989) The character has to choose
between numerous grails to find the
true one or risk death. The real grail is
simple compared to the gaudy false
Back to the Future Trilogy
We see the same town
square in four different
time periods - the wild
west, 1950s, 1985 &
Lighting can be split into two broad types, high key lighting
and low key lighting
High key lighting is often used in romances and musicals -
• Lighting is even
• Few dark areas or shadows
• Everything appears bright
Low Key often seen in horror movies and thrillers –
• Areas of light and shade
• Strong contrast
COMPARING LOW KEY AND HIGH KEY LIGHTING
Murder My Sweet (1944)
Strong contrast between
light and dark.
My Fair Lady (1958)
All over even lighting and
Colour can suggest the mood of a scene.
• Warm colours are associated with happiness and positivity and cool colours the
• Colour can also indicate importance. A woman in a red dress will stand out in a
crowd. A cowboy dressed in white might be the hero.
• A Change in colour can be used to indicate a different time period or device such
as a flash back or dream sequence.
Colour is used in Hero to indicate
different versions of the same
Each version uses a different
colour palette red, blue, green
A matter of Life and Death (1946)
The two different worlds in the
film are indicated by the use of
black and white photography
contrasted with colour
COSTUME/HAIR & MAKE-UP
Costume and make-up are often used to establish character.
It can be used to indicate
• The location the character is from
• The time period.
The costumes of the two characters clearly conveys
the difference in their statuses, (emperor and
gladiator) the period and location (Ancient Rome).
FACIAL EXPRESSIONS/BODY LANGUAGE
Facial expressions and body language indicate the mood of the character and their
relationship to others.
We see the character of Casey
Becker go from relaxed and happy to
confused and then distressed.
Positioning within the frame can be used to
• Draw the audience’s attention to a particular object or character
• Indicate relationships between characters
• Convey emotions
The Graduate (1967)
The woman’s leg in the foreground
dominates the shot. The size and position
of Dustin Hoffman shows the audience
who holds the power in this relationship.
Visual effects or VFX encompasses everything from models to matte painting and
computer generated imagery (CGI). VFX includes
• Matte painting
Sky Captain and the World of
The film was one of the first to be
shot on an entirely digital back lot.
All the settings are computer
Black Narcissus (1947)
The film is famous for its
extensive use of matte
paintings depicting the