Analyse, review and comment on a selected scene from ‘Mr. Bean, The Ultimate Disaster’ movie directed by Mel Smith or the Thomas Crown Affair directed by John McTerban. Consider the effects of organization and structure and how the author/producers intentions are conveyed and how attitude and meanings are communicated.The purpose of this media study is to analyse and interpret the methods used by director Mell Smith in the movie: ‘Mr. Bean, The Ultimate Disaster’, during the ‘Lift’ scene to create a specific impact on the viewers in terms of symbolism, miss-en-scene, cinematography and dramatic devices.
The theme of this movie is basically investigating the complexity of human relationships, by showing how two absolutely opposite personalities become close to each other through a series of difficult situations, by adapting, understanding and accepting each other’s shortcomings.There are two main symbols that have been used throughout the film. One of them is the Bean thematic music, which is played during the dramatic scenes, such as the revealing of the portrait of “Whistler’s Mother”.
The use of the theme music creates an atmosphere of humour and light-heartedness, which are the predominant aspects of Bean’s character. “Whistler’s Mother” is a symbol used in the film that appears constantly springs up in the movie, emphasizing the virtue of family relationships in modern American life.The setting of this scene affects how Bean is perceived by the audience and it also displays his determined, adaptable, comical and creative nature. This movie’s setting can be worked out to be in the United States; Los Angeles Southern California during the late nineteen hundreds.
The make of the cars parked in the neighborhood are fairly new and of the latest models, The costume of the museum security guard and his gun is of the type which is only found in the United States, the local dialect of the characters and their accent indicate that the setting is in the United States and the whole of the museum and its modern, high tech security system give the impression that the movie has been filmed in the late nineteen hundreds.Throughout the ‘Lift’ scene mute and advancing colours were used. The blue and black colours of the guard’s uniform, representing authority in the scene are the mute colours. The yellow gloves and the bright green slippers were the advancing colours used. They drew the audience’s gaze towards them and it made them appear bigger and nearer. It also emphasized the ridiculousness of Mr. Bean’s choice of equipment is and it provokes the audience to question whether or not his mission will be successful. This highlights the unusual personality of Mr. Bean and his unorthodox ways of doing things. Any other thief would not prefer the same type of equipment as Mr. Bean’s.The lighting intensity during this scene remained low key and most of the screen was set in shadows. The effect of this was the creation of an atmosphere of suspense by leaving a contrast between dark and light objects on the screen. The direction of the lighting was generally from the front and there was also the frequent spotlight on the characters. The spotlight on the character’s faces gave the audience a clear view of their faces, a childish look of amusement and concentration on Bean’s face provides a humorous effect in contrast to the worry, desperation and anger on the guard’s face.The quality of light remained balanced to diffuse. During the approach scene outside the museum, there was low key and soft lighting from the street lights. This helped to build up a feeling of apprehension as well as slight tension amongst the audience .It however remained that way inside the museum as well, with the soft/diffused lighting coming from the overhead and side lighting. This came from either above or from the side of the screen. The diffuse/low key lighting establishes the setting as being at night time setting.The costume of Bean during the ‘Lift’ scene is a black outfit, yellow gloves, a black ski hat, white underwear (worn on the head) and stuffed animal slippers. The costume of the guard however is a blue and grey shirt and black trousers. Apart from the black outfit, the colours of Bean’s costume are mostly bright colours, whereas the colours of the guard’s costume are dark. The sharp contrast of colour of Beans accessories and the guard’s uniform highlights Beans immature and childish character. Further on in the scene it creates an amusing when Bean manages to avoid the security guard and escape.There are a wide range of shots provided in this scene ranging from the zoom into Bean’s face, the tilting/panning through the medicine cabinet, the low level shot of Bean with the egg mixer, the long shot of Bean and the guard running across in opposite directions shows the absurdity of the situation and the low eye level shot of Bean preparing the equipment shows the creative and lively gleam in Bean’s eyes and also portrays the immense concentration on his face while working, which again arouses speculation in the minds of the audience about Bean’s capability to pull the scheme off successfully.The zoom into Bean’s face creates suspense and high expectation. It shows that he’s thinking about something and has got an idea which then creates a certain amount of tension. The long shot of the Museum cross-section gives a humorous and comical effect. It also adds dramatic/ironic effect to the humour. The high angle of Bean on the skateboard creates skepticism amongst the audience and draws attention to his vulnerability about Bean actually being able to use the skateboard and creates disbelief.There has also been the use of a variety of sounds, including visible and invisible sounds. The visible sound comes from the skateboard and the invisible sound comes from Bean calling the guard for help. The music has been made to fit in with the action and it used when the guard and Bean are running parallel to each other and Bean starts to prepare the picture/poster. It heightens the audience’s awareness of the situation and the character’s movement.Through effective use of camera angles, lighting, colour, costumes and sound, Smith has been able to manipulate the scene to create extra humorous and theatrical effects on the audience and their reaction to Bean’s ridiculous actions.