The plot of the movie is setting the family in a haunted hotel in winter and then introducing the evil theme. This creates the best recipe for a horror movie (King 32). This paper analyzes the mise-en-scene characteristics of the movie, with emphasis on the frame, composition and design and proxemic patterns. The Frame The opening frame for the movie begins with a tracking shot of the ocean with surrounding mountains. This is a sign of an isolated area to depict confined large spaces away from the city surrounded by nature. The music gets faster parallel with the tracking shot, and slows down as the pace of the tracking shot slows. This creates nervous and uneasy feeling for the audience. There is suddenly an aerial shot of a vehicle driving, an effective camera shot as it makes the vehicle look isolated and small. The movie frame produces some aspect of denotation as the vehicle continues travelling until it approaches a blue, cold, white and grey area with a visible mansion over the mountains (King 134). The scope and grace of the rest of the shots is hypnotic, but there is a moment prior to a low fly-by pass of a yellow car where the shadow of the helicopter capturing the scene becomes clearly visible in the lower right corner of the shot. The shots of the movie are fully academy aperture, with compositions and design for 1.85:1 purposely for projection in the theatre. The screens were marked and masked off with the ratio of 1.85:1. The helicopter shadow is visible in about four or five frames towards the edge of the masking at the 1.85:1 ratio (King 213). Composition and Design The set design and composition of the movie is epic. The movie incorporates contrasting between warm and cool colors in peak moments, including some major turning points. Lower contrast composition often precedes the heightened shots, subsequently developing some form of contrast between the shots. The interior of the movie feels mundane, yet so evil. The most dramatic weight of the film is the Overlook Hotel. The producer seems to create a perfect fusion between the interior and exterior shots. The producer uses violent color contrasts to heighten the audience’s unease feeling. One such key moment is when Grady ushers Jack into the washroom and urges him unsubtly to help his family. This scene is so intense that the audience may not notice the surrounding. The washrooms are full of stark artificial light, in sharp contrast to the ballroom with the boozy gold and warm (King 289). The pure white floor and ceiling in the washrooms accentuate the scary crimson walls. The composition and design of the movie is best highlighted at the manager’s room where Jack goes through an interview. The office is a typical 1970s office, with salmon-colored walls full with framed pictures. The office is completely different from the evil-looking washroom and the supernatural ballroom. From the set design of the office scene, it is evident that the designer took inspiration from actual hotel rooms in the American society. It seems that the producer built anomalies deliberately into the layout of the hotel to confuse the spatial awareness of the audience (King 325). A quick analysis of the plan view may reveal the drawing of the architects. The layout makes no sense, with hotel rooms open and straight onto balconies and internal windows with external light, as well as abrupt ends of the corridors. Proxemic Pattern Of the four proxemic
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