Assignment 1 (Blog 1 and 2) Mise en Scene and Cinematography

Mise en Scene

When analysing a film, Mise en scene is what you see in a scene of a film and how the props, setting, lighting and framing is used to explain the plot and story of a film. In the movie Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, there is a scene where Hagrid is introduced to the audience. The scene starts of with Harry making a wish on his 11th birthday. As if his wish was answered, Hargrid comes bursting into the room. The audience don’t know who this mysterious figure is. This is because of the use of certain colours and lighting, as well as camera angles.

The colour used in this scene, which is mainly dark blue, black and white suggest that unknown danger is approaching Harry. The bright black light behind Hagrid shadows the front of him. This makes him all the more mysterious.As well as the low key  lighting and colour symbolising the approaching threat, a low angle shot is used to portrayal Hagrid as a dominant and giant being. This shot is used again when Hagrid introduces himself to Harry, which is shown in fig 2.It shows how vulnerable and innocent Harry is, as he is fully unaware of what is going on. Another reason why Hagrid at first looks very dominant at first is his overall design.

Fig 1
Fig 2








Cinematography is quite similar to mise en scene, as they both analysis the overall scene. However, the main difference is that it focuses on the director manipulating the camera to illustrate a specific scene.  In terms of perspective, the scene shown in fig 3 shows professor quil running in the great hall. What makes this scene interesting is how the director was able to have hundreds of people in the room, yet have the audience focus on the professor.The wide shot captures the professor running straight in the middle row of the great hall, which is one of the reasons why the audiences eyes are drawn to him.

The other reason is the tonalities of the scene.The walls and the student’s robes are the only dark areas in the scene, with everything else being quite a light colour. The tables are positioned almost symmetrical from one another, almost like two mirror’s facing each other with the professor running in-between them. With the tonalities and the positioning of the tables, our eyes are instantly drawn to this man, instead of everyone else. As well as this, the clothes on the children are of a darker colour than the tables than the tables.

Fig 3