Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Analysing a movie poster

The above poster is from the film 'Shutter Island'
The genre of this film is a Physcological thriller. 

The codes and conventions of the genre

The codes and conventions from this genre is that it uses a dark setting by using lowkey lighting, this creates suspense and engages the audience. We see a variety of camera angles to get different views of what is going on, a popular one is an eye view, so the audience feels like an observer and feels engaged in the film. The symbolic codes are the facial expressions to express which actors are 'insane' and which actors are 'normal'. The story can get confusing so its important that the audience can clearly see who is who. The use of make up can also indicate who is a patient at 'Shutter Island' as they are pale and look ill.

Key signifiers of the poster

The key signifiers of the poster are that you can see the main actor holding a match stick, this indicates to me that he is looking for something and he is being kept in the dark as his surroundings are dark but the match lights his face up, he is also looking over the island which tells us the setting is on an island.

You can also see that it says 'Someone is missing', so this also indicates that he is looking for someone.

The island itself is very dark and the weather looks dark and gloomy, this gives the impression that the island is very lonely and isn't a nice place to visit.

Denotative levels of meaning in the poster

The denotative levels of meaning in this poster is that we can see a building, which in my opinion looks like a Prison as it is very dark and has towers, there is also no easy access or escape as its surrounded by water which would be an ideal place for people that need to be maintained. The image of the island is like someone has created it with photo's, as there are squares around certain parts of the island, this gives an idea that the island isn't real or how it seems.

Connotative levels of meaning in the poster

What I associate with the dark building is a prison, simply because it looks deserted and the building itself is very dark, therefore its a place that doesn't attract to me and a place I wouldn't like to visit! The match stick that the main actor is holding I would associate with danger, as match sticks can cause a fire and its dangerous. The poster overall suggests to me that the film includes danger, mystery, darkness and loneliness. This would be enough to make me want to see the film!

What is the poster communicating and why?

The poster is communicating with the audience with a range of images and by making the intended audience interested, it also doesn't give too much away so this would make a person curious and this would be enough to make them go and see it.

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