-Amadeus movie by Milos Forman , shows the story of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. The story was told by Antonio Salieri who was flashing back the period of his life in which he was so jealous from Mozart wondering how could Mozart be that talented and wishing he could be in his place. Throughout the movie, Antonio was trying to ruin Mozart and become a composer to take revenge. The movie was full of stage scenes and great opera shows. Because of that, we can see that mise en sce’ne technique was mostly used in making this movie. This doesn’t mean that it was the only technique, but let’s say it was the most obviously used technique.
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Mise en sce’ne ” was originally a French theatrical term meaning placing on stage. The phrase refers to the arrangement of all the visual elements of a theatrical production within a given playing area- the stage”( Giannetti, p.45). Mise en sce’ne like any technique is related to different elements that combine to make the movie. These elements are the frame, Compositions and design, Territorial space, proxemic patterns , and others. In this paper I will be talking about some of these elements and link them to the movie to express the way they were used to improve the movie.
The firm in any movie split between the actual world and the film world by giving it a special taste related to the story of the film. In this paragraph, I will talk about the overall frame and how people were positioned in the frame in some of the scenes. The overall frame of Amadeus that we saw throughout the movie was classical and reflect the 18 century in Europe in general and in Vienna specifically . As the movie was reflecting the 18th century , we don’t see electricity it’s whether the sun or candles light. At the begging of the movie for example , when Antonio was telling the story of him with Mozart and playing music there was a candle on the piano. In all of the stage shows the ceiling was full of candle chandeliers that lighten the whole place. Another thing that reflects the era of the movie and was seen thought the movie as well was the historical customs and wigs that people were putting. Now let’s take a closer look into the positing of the people in the movie and how each position meant to give attention to a different thing. Placing whether it’s in the top, middle , bottom, sides, or off the frame is done for symbolic purposes. In Stage Scenes, Mozart was always in the middle of the frame. This was made to concentrate on Mozart the main character without being distracted with other elements on the screen. Other elements on the same scene will be shown on a less clear view and on the edges of the screen like the people dancing behind Mozart for example to give them less attention. Another example of middle scenes is Antonio when he was telling his story with Mozart. This was because Antonio is also an important character and to make audience attracted to concentrate more on the story he was telling. In some scenes, the camera lens was zooming slowly on Antonio’s face when he was watching Mozart playing music to show exactly his face expressions and how jealous he was. Moreover, in this scene Antonio was placed in the middle. In another seen, when Antonio was with the women who sings opera on the stage behind Mozart, The women was close to the upper side of the frame to show power and inspiration and Antonio was placed closer to the down side of the frame to show his eyes rolling and viewing her whole body.
About composition and design of Amadeus film, we can see that mostly used compositions were balanced. Moreover, the way of picturing things was successful to capture the audience attentions on what the filmmaker wants. There was a link between positing in the frame and dominance of areas as they completed each other without any conflict. Meaning that ,When a character like Mozart was positioned in the middle of the frame while being in the stage, he was the dominant of the area that attracted our attentions first as well. The design was classical that didn’t hurt the eyes while watching. No complicated scenes were shown although many elements were used in the same scene. This is because the positing and dominance helped in concentrating on important elements only and view other elements as background as they were meant to be. An example of that will be the opera show which was full of elements like Mozart, dancing people, women singing opera, chandeliers, audience and others. This scene was presented in a very simple way by giving dominance to each character alone at a specific point of time and fade the other elements. By doing this, the audience was forced to concentrate on what the filmmaker wanted them to concentrate on.
The arrangement of elements like people, shapes, colors , and surfaces to give a good arranged image is not easy. Movie images should tell a story in time that involves human beings and their problems (Giannetti, p.67). Going back to Amadeus film , we saw a really well organized arrangement of elements that reflected the era of the movie as was mentioned earlier. Moreover, the images helps a lot in giving a story that is so close to Mozart story in reality. This is because details were shown and many of his music were played along with his stage shows. Also, people who liked him whether in a peace or jealous way were shown. The consequence of scenes with the good images arrangement took the audience to the era of Mozart in a very smooth smart way. Not only is arranging elements in a good way important , but also determining the space between these elements. Space reflects a way of communication between people and give an impression to the audience about the relationships between the objects. In Antonio and Mozart scenes , always a space was put between them to show that they don’t have a good relation with each other and maybe to have a safety distance. On the other hand, audience that were on the opera and Mozart show were standing with almost no space between them to show how interested they are in the show how much they appreciate this show to the extent that they don’t care about the way they are standing with others. Space is not only between people, it sometimes on the frame itself. An example of a space in the frame would be after the stage performance when Antonio entered a room and was talking to the opera women. Antonio was standing on the right side of the door leaving a space on the left side. This space was left for the audience to expect the entrance of someone. Actually , this what have happened as after a few minutes, Mozart entered the room.
In conclusion, Amadeus movie is a great movie that worth watching. No doubt, this movie won eight Oscars It contains many important information about Mozart that showed a very close picture of his real story. Moreover, Mise en scene technique was used in an amazing way and it combined with other elements which generates an interesting movie.
Giannetti, L. (2010). Understanding movies. New Jersy: Prentice hall.
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