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Archive for the ‘1styearscottie’ Category

Overview:

A Way Out is a film set in Newark, New Jersey in 1974 where the lives of African-Americans are still hard even after the Civil Rights movement. The main character of the film Delilah Jenkins is a high school senior who is applying to college and having a great deal of problems with the admissions process. Delilah’s high school, Malcolm X. Shabazz High School, is filled with racist teachers and students who don’t care about the future of their students or in the students’ case, their own. While Delilah works hard to maintain the high grades that she gets, she watches her friends have intimate relations with their to get good grades, fight, and drop out of school. Therefore, she tries to maintain her determination to get into college.

At home, Delilah is forced to become the parent of her four younger siblings since her mother is never home because of her drug addiction and her father was shot and killed in a gang fight. Delilah and her family live in the most infamous projects in the city known for its gang problems. Every time Delilah walks out of her building she is a approached by one of her or her father’s friends asking her to join the gang and make her father proud. So now, Delilah is confronted with the decision to either follow her dreams or live in her dad’s shadow. Therefore, Delilah writes in her journal every night and writes letters to her boyfriend to try and release some of the stress and get some encouragement.

After some time however, Delilah comes to the conclusion that she is unable to deal with her siblings, school, and life itself all alone and calls her grandmother from Alabama to come help her with the kids. When her grandmother gets there she helps Delilah with kids and takes away that burden but then tell Delilah that she is not good enough to go to college and that she needs to work on her household skills in order to find a husband. This added opposition makes the stress and pressure more than she can bear, so she decides to drop out of school.

Along with this decision, Delilah also decides to walk in her father’s footsteps and join the gang. On the night of her initiation, Delilah is forced to do a drive by in the neighborhood of the leader of the opposing gang. While doing so, Delilah is shot and killed.

When her funeral is held, her mother decides to clean herself up and end her drug while her grandmother sits and consoles the children. When the family gets home, they discover that Delilah had gotten accepted into Syracuse University.

 

 

Characters:

Delilah Jenkins: 17-year-old high school senior who is an A/B student applying to college. However, getting such good grades is hard for Delilah because not only do her teachers not care but the students don’t as well. She is forced to deal with racism in school and the opposition from her family and friends to go to college. At home in the “projects”, Delilah is the both a mother and father to her four younger siblings. While dealing with the stress of taking care of her siblings and applying to college, Delilah is being pressured to continue her father’s legacy by joining the gang known as the bloods by gang members and friends. Therefore Delilah is confused as to which path she should take: college or gang.

The actress I am considering to play this role is Keke Palmer.

Linda Jenkins: 36-year-old mother of Delilah who is cocaine addict. Linda has been struggling with her drug addiction since Delilah’s father Daniel Jenkins died because she couldn’t handle taking care of their children and the bills alone. However, Linda promises her Delilah that she is “trying to get on feet,” but she is not taking any steps toward rehab.

The actress I am considering to play this role is Jennifer Lewis.

Bernice Watts: grandmother of Delilah Jenkins who is from Selma, Alabama. Bernice has lived in the south all of her life and was born and raised to believe that African-Americans were nothing more than mere workers. Most importantly, in her opinion, African-American women were only meant to tend to the household and family and all other aspirations are ridiculous and unrealistic.

The actor I am considering to play this role is Sicily Tyson.

William Perry: Delilah’s 19-year-old boyfriend who is a freshman at Syracuse University. William wants Delilah to leave home and go to college at Syracuse with him because he knows the stress that she is under. William tries to keep in contact with Delilah through letters but is busy at school. He is her inspiration and encourager, and he worries about Delilah all of the time.

The actor I am considering to play this role is Nate Parker.

Daniel Jenkins: Delilah’s deceased father who had been a member of the “Bloods.” Growing up without a father, Daniel ran away from home at a young age and found a family within his gang. However, Daniel had been a great father and husband, but he had been killed in a gunfight when Delilah was fourteen.

 

Major Scenes in Film:

Funeral Scene: This scene will be shot at the Fairmont Cemetery. The camera will capture a wide view from a high angle or a bird’s eye view, with Delilah’s casket in the middle preparing to be buried and her family and friends gathered all around the casket. There will be no sound other than the pastor reading a scripture as the body is lowered. The camera will zoom in on the casket as each person places a flower on top of it. Once everyone is finished, the camera will follow the casket as it lowers. Once the casket reaches to the bottom the shot will fade to black.

 

Closing Scene: The camera will capture Delilah’s siblings, mother, and grandmother enter the apartment starting with a medium view and slowly zooming in to catch each person’s expression. By the time Delilah’s grandmother enters the house the camera will have a close-up of her and will follow her as she reaches down to grab the mail on the floor. As she stands back up the camera will zoom in on the grandmother’s hands and the letters as she looks at each one. When she gets to the last letter she will drop all of the others in shock. The camera will zoom in on Delilah’s name and address and then zoom out and point up and the grandmother’s expression. The camera will capture a medium view of the letter and focus first on the Syracuse university emblem. As the grandmother reads the letter the camera will “be her eyes” and slowly go over each word. When the camera reaches the word “accepted,” it will zoom in at a medium pace and fade to black.

 

Music:

I am still deciding on the exact tracks I will want to be in the film but most I will like the music to build up the tension in the film just as Delilah’s stress is building. So the music in the beginning scenes will be a lot slower in rhythm but with a defined beat and as the film progress the music will become more and more upbeat. Finally, the film will end in silence.

 

Camera Angles:

I plan to use a variety of camera angles including medium view, close-up, long shots, and pans.

 

Length and Expected Cost of Film

This film will be a feature length film that will be about 2 hours and 30 minutes long. The film will be shot on location in Newark, New Jersey and therefore a budget of about 145 million will be needed. This amount will cover the camera usage, props, sound, payment of actor, clothing, and make up artists and anything else that should arise.

 

Purpose of this Film:

This film is going to touch the hearts of everyone who watches it because it will not only capture the struggle that high school students face but the pressures put upon them. Adults, especially parents and grandparents, will be able to relate because they will see how much of an affect the play within the lives of their children. This film will not only show that there were still problems to be dealt with even after the Civil Rights Movement but how hard it is when not the only are the people on the outside against you but the people inside as well. This film should be a lesson to all by encouraging everyone who sees it never to give up and to work hard and reach your goal even if one must do it alone.

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The mistreatment and segregation of the blacks from the whites in the film, Mississippi Burning, was accepted and prevalent in Mississippi during the time of the civil rights movement. This oppression and cruelty is shown in many scenes throughout the film however two scenes display this ill treatment in a powerful way.

In first scene that causes the members of audience to cringe the camera captures a vast green, beautiful and flowery field close up. Little by little the camera zooms out and slowly captures every inch of the field, which provokes a feeling of happiness, beauty, and serenity within the film’s audience. However, these euphoric feelings are erased when a black cage is shown in the left corner of the field as a young black man is trapped inside like a caged animal. This image eradicates the field’s beauty as the sweat pours down this young man’s face and his eyes are widened with nervousness and fear. The look on this poor man face creates the same feelings within the audience as one can’t help but to empathize and sympathize with this poor black man. Just as he grips on to cage, a person watching this scene holds on tightly to the arm of their chair for a sense of escape from such sadness and misery. Unfortunately, however, there didn’t seem to be any escape from such pain and suffering.

The other scene in the film that portrayed the terror of the south during civil rights movement is filled with a collection of shots of burning houses and churches. However, one shot that embodies the white perspective of the idea of black equality is where the camera shows a house with a sign on it that says “Freedom.” For a few seconds the house is shown peaceful and untouched, but in the blink of an eye the house catches fire and burns down. In this scene the house seemed to symbolize the concept black freedom and how it was one that whites during this time believed should be put to an end or just as the house, destroyed.

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She stands alone as she holds up a cardboard sign with the word “UNION” written on it. A loud cacophony of looms in the factory surround her as the eyes of her co-workers stare up at her with confusion and shock. Yet, she still remains bold and strong with her head held up high to show that nothing can stop her. Suddenly, for a moment, the noise coming from the band of looms seems to get louder as the camera circles around Norma Rae. Then one by one, each worker puts on a look of power and aggression, and stops their looms.

This scene, in the 1979 film Norma Rae, is a major turning point for both Norma Rae and her fellow factory workers at O.P. Henley. Before this scene occurs in the film, the divide between the workers and their employers is evident as the workers are underpaid and overworked in the poor conditions of the textile factory. Throughout the film these employees are portrayed as powerless and weak, but in the aforementioned scene they gain a new sense of empowerment. As they watch a fellow member of the working-class stand up for her rights, they realize that they too are tired of being mistreated and need to take a stand. Consequently, for the first time in the movie the workers support the union and stand with Norma against their oppressors. The strength in Norma’s stance and the looks on the faces of her fellow textile workers portrays a sense of unity between them that was never there before in the film.

All in all, the film Norma Rae depicts the real hardships that factory workers had to endure during that time period. However, this scene in particular shows the unity and force that was needed to overcome such oppression.

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The 1972 thriller, Deliverance, is a film about four friends who decide to take a canoe trip down the Cahulawassee River. However, along the way the four friends run into some trouble, yet two of them run into sexual abuse.

The most pivotal, harshest, and one of the most violent scenes of the film is the sodomy scene involving two friends and two, as they are referred to in the movie, “mountain men.” This scene is so crucial because Ed and Bobby went from looking like two strong men to two helpless animals. This change was not only due to the way the mountain men treated the two friends, but to the way the scene was shot as well. The angles at which this scene was filmed capture the intensity and sadness within this moment. One close up in particular that showed the complete defeat of both Bobby and Ed was the shot that was captured from the side of Ed’s face. This shot is so powerful and full of grief because Ed is shown tied to a tree by the neck with sweat pouring down his face, while his head is falling up and down in such a helpless manner. Sadly, however, the audience is unable to just feel sympathy for Ed alone because in the shot is a blurred image of Bobby laying on the after being raped, stretched out and weak. However, this feeling of defeat and weakness is also heightened by the silence in this particular moment. Throughout this entire scene there is noise whether it is squealing, yelling, or loud talking, yet in this moment it all goes away. This silence gives the audience to not only sympathize but also empathize with these two men, because in this moment they don’t look like strong men or two good friends, they look like victims. All in all, this scene was a major turning point in the attitude and portrayal of the film’s main characters.

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The 1967 film In the Heat of the Night takes place in Sparta, Mississippi where racism is extremely prevalent. The film uses the relationship between its protagonist, a black man named Virgil Tibbs, and its antagonist, a white police sheriff named Bill Gillespie, to show the intensity of the aforementioned prejudice.

The first few close ups of these two characters are separate shots that take place in Gillespie’s office after Tibbs had been arrested. For Gillespie’s close-up the camera captures him at a low angle standing against the wall with his police shirt partially unbuttoned, gum in his mouth, and a smile on his face. Therefore, this shot portrays Gillespie as a white, proud, yet sloppy officer. The fact that his shirt is unbuttoned makes him seem completely unprofessional and the gum in his mouth reinforces that idea. However, his smile casts a sense of confidence and power, which is reinforced by the low angle at which the camera films him. In contrast, however, Tibbs’ close-up is a full frontal view of him standing straight up wearing a button-down shirt and tie, and holding a face of anger. This shot of Tibbs, in opposition to Gillespie’s shows that he is a black, respectable, troubled, and upset man. This depiction of Tibbs comes through from the intensity of anger on his face, and his inferiority to Gillespie is evident since the camera is catches him head-on.

When comparing these two shots its seems as if the close-ups and facial expressions on these two characters should be switched. Tibbs, the black, well-dressed, and respectable-looking man should be the one with a smile on his face. However, the white, sloppily dressed, gum-smacking cop is the one placed on the pedestal. All in all, during these times it didn’t matter who a black person was or looked like because no matter what a white person was more superior.

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Everything Lost, Gone with the Wind

The 1939 romance drama film, Gone with the Wind, depicts the effects and repercussions of the Civil War in the American south, specifically Georgia. The film uses the life of its protagonist, Scarlett O’Hara, to show the decline of health and wealth for people living in the south during this time. Moreover, it shows Scarlett’s transition from a naïve girl to an independent woman. This decline and growth is captured in two scenes of the film where Scarlett is standing in the sunset.

The first time Scarlett is shown standing in the sunset, she is portrayed as a naïve little girl. This immaturity is evident because she is holding and leaning on her father. Such actions show that she is still a young child and needs her parent to depend on. When looking at her silhouette in this scene, her hair and dress portray her wealth at this point in her life. As they blow in the wind, her hair is flowing with curls, and her dress is long, puffy, and elegant. In this shot she and her father look as if they are completely carefree and satisfied with life. Yet, after the war began, Scarlett’s life took a turn for the worse.

The next time we see Scarlett in the sunset she looks both weak and troubled. The abundant life she once had has turned into an impoverish one. In this scene Scarlett stands alone holding up her fist. Her dress is just as long as the first, however it is not puffy or elegant at all. Her hair is not neat and curly but instead tied back with strands sticking out. This difference in her wardrobe shows that her life and wealth has gone downhill. However, the fact that she is standing alone shows that she is more of a woman than a child. Moreover since her fist is raised, she looks as if she has gained a sense of empowerment and independence from her struggle.

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