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Director Inspiration

For my A2 coursework, I would like to create a short film in the style of Terrence Malick. This is due to the fact that I film that his films look really visually pleasing which is something I’d like to replicate.

terrence-malick


The Thin Red Line (1998)

The Thin Red Line is a war film set in the Pacific Theatre of WW2.

The film follows a US Army Private who is AWOL is found and imprisoned on a troop carrier by his company First Sergeant. The men on the navy ship have been brought to Guadalcanal to help seize an island from the Japanese. On deck the lieutenant discusses the invasion and its importance, and reveals that this battle may be his last chance to lead a successful operation. The ship lands on Guadalcanal and marched to the middle of the island and find evidence of the Japanese presence and tactics. The men arrive at near Hill 210 which is an important Japanese position, and find that the Japanese have placed a bunker on this island which gives them full view of their surroundings, meaning that any attempt to climb the hill will lead to machine gun fire. A battle begins between the two

The film follows a US Army Private who is AWOL is found and imprisoned on troop carrier by his company First Sergeant. The men on the navy ship have been brought go Guadalcanal t0 help seize an island from the Japanese. On deck the lieutenant discusses the invasion and its importance, and reveals that this battle may be his last chance to lead a successful operation. The ship lands on Guadalcanal and marched to the middle of the island to find evidence of the Japanese presence and tactics. The men arrive near Hill 210 which is an important Japanese position, and find that the Japanese have placed a bunker on this island which gives them a full view of their surroundings, meaning that any attempt to climb the hill would lead to machine gun fire. The men from the ship attempt to take the hill but are countered by gunfire. The Captain is told by the Colonel to take the bunker by frontal assault but refuses to let his men be ‘cannon fodder’. During this dispute, the Japanese forces have decreased. Eventually, the Japanese forces are found to be dying out. The men are given a week’s leave and when they return they are send on patrol up a river. They are bombed by the Japanese, who now demand their surrender. The AWOL Army Private is shot but the rest of the company are able to escape without harm.

This film features many of the Terrence Malick style shots that I have researched. The very start of the film begins with scenic shots of nature, such as a long shot of a crocodile floating in a river and a shot or the light shining through the trees. For this shot, there is a reverse birds eye view shot, creating a sense of how tall the tree is and the light is dispersed through the tree making a very interesting looking shot. I would like to consider using a shot like this in my film. When the army private is on the beach with the natives, these scenes have been filmed in the magic hour, creating a pleasant glow and makes the scene feel a lot more calm that if it were filmed in any other time of day. This film also features wide angle hand-held two shots, rather than the typical shot reverse shot utilised during conversations.

Through watching a film directed by Terrence Malick, I have been able to watch his trade mark styles put into practice and understand how effecting these are.

 

 

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