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Upton Hall School Essay

The purpose of a trailer is to persuade the viewers to go and see a specific film that it is advertising. A trailer is an overview of a forthcoming movie due for release at a cinema, DVD or video, which attracts the audience’s attention. The trailer for “Moulin Rouge” is targeted at audiences over 12. This age certificate is set by the British Film Censors Board. It persuades people to go to watch the film as awarding actors, actresses and film director are in this movie.

For example Baz Luhrmann the director has directed many other accredited movies including “Rome & Juliet” and “Strictly Ballroom”, therefore “Moulin Rouge” will appeal to Baz Luhrmann fans (synergy). The genre of this film is a musical love story set in late 19th century Paris at the “Moulin Rouge”, meaning it is a fast and exciting trailer which creates tension and suspense for the audience.

The main characters in the trailer for “Moulin Rouge” are Satine (played by Nicole Kidman) the courtesan and main protagonist for both the passionate filled playwright Christian (played by Ewer McGregor) and the lovelorn Duke (played by Richard Roxburgh). Another character shown in the film is Zidler (played by Jim Broadbent) the master of ceremonies at the “Moulin Rouge”. Besides the main characters of the film, also present in the trailer are performances by dancers, jugglers, and acrobats at the fabulous sensuous nightclub “Moulin Rouge”.

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The “Moulin Rouge” trailer shows the film’s potential through the film language used. It uses sound, lighting, colour, editing and camera movements to its advantage so the audience wants to see this film. This moving romantic journey is set in and around the mesmerising extravagance of the “Moulin Rouge”. It is set in the late 19th century in Paris, a time of change and excitement. The director has chosen to set this film in Paris as it compliments the story. Paris is known as the city of love and romance paralleling the theme of the film.

By setting the movie in a familiar place it adds to the affect as the audience can relate more to the story. In the 5th shot of the trailer it shows a view of Paris including the Eiffel Tower and the “Moulin Rouge”. This allows the audience to be able to become more involved in this trailer by this use of clever imagery of the city. This persuades the viewers to go and see the film. Baz Luhrmann, the director has chosen to use Mise-En-Scene (costume, hair and make-up) as a major part of this film all of which are, bright, colourful and eye-catching drawing the audience to the excitement and passion of the “Moulin Rouge”.

Each character has their own individual style which represents their personality and beliefs; Satine’s period costume hair and make-up are very sensuous and revealing drawing the audience to her. The colours used in the costumes are all dramatic e. g. red, black and purple which convey a strong and mysterious character. These colourful bright costumes are set against Satine’s pale translucent and vibrant red hair, giving her a very dramatic appearance. In contrast Christian’s costumes are very plain ordinary clothes of the late 19th century period.

The Duke although wearing similar clothes to Christian his clothes look more expensive and he wears a top hat. He has waxed moustache and like the archetype villain, he strokes his moustache when he is being particularly evil and malvolant. By using the difference costumes for each character the audience quickly develop relative feelings and perceptions towards them. This is a very persuasive piece of film language the director has chosen to use, as this makes the audience more interested in the film trailer so they will want to go and see the whole movie.

Another part of Mise-En-Scene in this rapid montage of shots is how props are used to persuade the audience to watch the movie. Trapeze swings and dance choreography are all part of props which are used to interest the audience, conveying the excitement and energy inside the exotic nightclub. In the 13th frame Satine is suspended on a trapeze swing as she performs to the men below. As she performs not only does this create excitement and enjoyment for the male audience below but it creates tension and excitement for the audience watching the trailer arousing their interest.

This use of props are used to persuade the viewers to go and see the full blockbuster hit. The film maker has chosen to use body language to create relationships between characters. Characters who like one another have their bodies closer together, for example Satine and Christian are lovers meaning their bodies are closer and the shot is more intimate. The audience are made to feel extra comfortable around the couple where as between the Duke and Christian this shot is more aggressive and powerful.

Satine is very confident when performing and when she is with Christian but when she is featuring in a shot with the Duke, she is timid and turns away from him. This shows to the audience her true feelings about the Duke. Christian is less confident and timid but as the trailer continues his confidence grows, as his love for Satine develops. The audience can develop relationships with characters depending on the characters actions. If relationships between the audience and characters can be formed in a 3 minute trailer, it is more likely the audience will be persuaded to go and watch “Moulin Rouge” at the cinema.

The lighting and colour the director has chosen to use is very atmospheric and creates a feeling of tension and excitement for the viewer throughout this trailer. The lighting and colour reflects the characters personality, action and feelings, which influence the audience into a feeling a certain way. The trailer consists of around 120 shots all of which are in colour. Almost all the shots are set inside the “Moulin Rouge” where the lighting is from above showing down on those people below. This lighting effect is known as high key lighting.

The Duke is always set in low key lighting as this creates harsh shadows over his face. In one frame in particular part of the Duke’s face is in shadow whilst the other half of his face is in a spotlight. By using harsh lighting when the Duke is in the frame it adds to the effect and conveys to the audience he is an evil and dangerous character. When Satine and Christian are together lighting is soft and intimate to reflect their loving feelings for each other. High key lighting is used here as it looks natural.

This is achieved with filter lighting. The lighting conveys a loving and caring mood compared to the evil and aggressive Duke. In trailer there are two main types of sounds; diegetic and non-diegetic sound. Diegetic is sound which is part of the film world which the characters can hear. This can be in the form of dialogue, music, or sound effects which come from a source in the movie. This can occur on or off screen: the audience can see what is making the sound (on screen) or they cannot (off screen).

Non-diegetic is sound which the characters cannot hear. This can be background music, voice over or narrative. Only the audience hear non-diegetic sound. In this trailer for “Moulin Rouge” diegetic sound is used; dialogue between characters, gun shot and music. In the 30 second shot Satine is singing in the play but then this diegetic sound turns into non-diegetic sound, as different frames continue whilst the singing (which the characters in this frame cannot hear) continues. This is what makes the trailer more unique and appealing for the viewers.

Another example of diegetic sound used very often in the “Moulin Rouge” trailer is dialogue between character for e. g. Satine and Zidler appear on one shot together where they are discussing the Duke. Having a variation of diegetic sounds persuades the audience to go and see the film. Non-diegetic sound is used in the “Moulin Rouge” trailers. Examples of non-diegetic sound are the narrator, Christian (the second main narrator) and background music, all of which are sounds the characters do not hear.

Non-diegetic sound is sound which the viewers do not recognise as part of the film world. In this case popular non-diegetic sounds are the narrators. Christian is a character in the film but he is also a main narrator. He occasionally speaks over shots giving the audience a short synopsis of the storyline to arouse their interest, so they will want to go and watch the full length feature film. An example of narrative speech Christian says is “this story is about love…. at the Moulin Rouge”.

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