Thursday, 10 February 2011

RESEARCH: Harry Brown Deconstruction

Film: Harry Brown
Year: 2009
Certificate: 18
Director: Daniel Barber
Genre: Action/Drama

     Opening titles slowly appear and reappear on a black screen. You then begin to hear non diegetic muffled voices which turn to diegetic when you are cut to a group of young gentleman. All of them are wearing hoodies and speaking in a modern broken working class accent. The scene is entirely shot on a mobile phone which works surprisingly well regarding verisimilitude, it’s as if you aren’t watching a film but viewing a video on someone’s phone so the whole scene seems a lot more realistic. The scene has a very sinister feel, mostly because of the possible stereotype of the characters and the grey concrete wall smothered with graffiti. It soon becomes obvious that the hoodies have drugs as the camera directly shows a weird contraption. A hoodie is soon centered out as the other characters force him to take the drugs and then pin him against the wall, slapping his face and swearing. He then exhales the substance and his chums congratulate him and the camera moves back. Another hoodie then looks at the camera and shows off a gun, describing it as "real shit" and then giving it to the guy who just took the drugs as if it were a green beret. The film then cuts to the directors title and then cuts to more mobile filming, probably from the same camera. The sound is very loud and frightening and two men are on a bike riding dangerously through the estate. The jumpy film work shows more graffiti and dead trees to emphasis the scariness of the estate. The film then cuts to them riding past a lady with a pram, swearing as they go past you then see one of the youths get out a gun which makes the audience tense, they then ride back and shoot at the girl deliberately missing. The gun sounds are made to be very loud so the audience jump and are naturally scared of the gun. The man continues shooting at the lady and she is shown screaming and protecting her baby. Inevitably the guy on the bike misjudges and shoots her in the neck and she falls over dead. There is a pause so the audience can take in what happened and then both riders swear and make a hasty get away before the camera shows a lorry hitting them. Splinters fly everywhere and the mobile camera is flung in the air before landing conveniently to see the two now dead motorbike riders on the road. The film the cuts to the words ‘Michael Caine is Harry Brown’ on a black screen, the writing is small, a decision by the director so the character Harry Brown appears small and unimportant.

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