This film beings with an eerie setting and suspenseful music. Even though this movie is in black and white it is mostly dark colors in the beginning scene. By making the beginning scene it immediately draws in the attention of the viewer. Citizen Kane utilizes cinematographic techniques to stress material presence and textual representation. At the beginning of the film, and throughout the entirety of the film, there would be an up-close text and during this the camera would move with the viewer as they were reading it.
This happened when Charles Foster Kane died and there were many newspapers in different languages being shown. The scene that best described deep focus was when Charles Kane was throwing snowballs outside while his parents were inside talking to Mr. Thatcher.
This scene made Charles Kane look alone as the camera angle slowly pulled back through the window and stopping at the adults having a conversation. Even though you may think that Kane wasn’t a focus in this scene, this proves he was because of the way the camera was and how the film used deep focus.
Another example of how Citizen Kane utilizes cinematographic techniques is how it used psychological image in the scene of Kane and his first wife at the kitchen table. This scene to me created the image of how their marital relationship declined over the years. This scene begins with Kane and his wife, Emily, in the early stage of their marriage and how Kane says many times how much he loves her and how he pushed an appointment for his newspaper back so he could spend time with her.
However, as this scene progresses it jumps ahead in time, still at the kitchen table, but this time Emily is complaining each morning about how much time he spends at the newspaper. As the scene progresses it continues to show moments in the later life of their marriage and how it gets unhappier and unhappier. At the end of this scene they are at opposites sides of the table, as far away as possible from one another, in contrast to the beginning of the scene when they were sitting right next to one another. The deep focus of the couple together in the beginning showed a happy newly married couple, but near the end it was a wide spread show showing the distance that has grown between them. This gave the viewer an inside look on how the conflicts in the marriage has made them grow further and further apart from one another. By using this technique, it gave the viewer a better understanding of Kane’s life at that time.
The Blade Runner also does a good job on using cinematographic techniques to stress material presence. Within this film the viewer was able to understand what was going on without any verbal ques. The use of the camera also gives the viewer a better understanding of how a character was feeling throughout the movie. When the camera followed Roy, it was at a low angle making him look bigger than a regular man. This method is used to make a character look as more of a hero and adds more strength to his character. However, it followed Deckard with the camera looking down on him, making Deckard look like less of a man. This implied that Roy was the higher man.
This movie also used differed types of lighting and color to express the story. This helped add depth to some of the scenes. There wasn’t much color in this film however in a few select scenes. One scene that showed color was when Deckard meets Pris in Sebastian’s room. Colored lights were used in this scene to create a glow coming from the character’s eyes. The film also used the use of lighting when it showed Sebastian’s building. The light in the film helps create a depth that can’t always be explained through the script. When the camera would show Sebastian’s building it would always be in low lighting. However, there was a use of light lighting on the building on the roof and walls. This was used it make it clear to the viewer that this was something that was important.
This contrast also made the viewer more interested in the space because they are wondering why it was different than all of the other scenes. Blade Runner also used semiotic image. A unicorn was used as a symbol within the film. The film makers chose this because the film makes the viewer question if Deckard was a human or a replicant. The use of the unicorn was important because it foreshadowed this event and made the answer clearer to the viewer. A unicorn has always been a symbol for something mystical or fake. This helped the viewer figure out if Deckard was really a human. By using semiotic image, it helped the viewer understand the film better.