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AS and A Level: Plays

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  • Peer Reviewed essays 2
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  1. Evaluation of a Winters Tale

    stick and start's a syndrome where Leontes assumes paranoia that Polixenes or perhaps everyone is trying to take things out from under him. Originally there was a dance number that was about 5 minutes long but it evolved into more of a entrance tune where the audience gets their first glance at the actors playing. I had several different directions than the rest of the cast at this point, I don't dance for example. I felt that Leontes (playing host)

    • Word count: 2705
  2. A dolls house act one summary

    Helmer comes in from his study, which is adjacent to the living room and criticises her for being a spendthrift. His tone is that of a father talking to a child - quite patronising. This shows that he doesn't approve of her money spending habits and her recklessness with money - he is scared that he may end up in a position of poverty and doesn't want to lose all that he has worked for. Also shows he is very careful with money - wants to make sure it is spent wisely and not recklessly, for he is worried that if spent recklessly he may not be able to keep the place he has.

    • Word count: 2309
  3. Aristotle described the need for the audience to experience pity and fear while watching a tragedy, explore and analyse the scene of Othello in which your feel these emotions are strong in the audience.

    But without Iago and his vindictive nature there would be no tragedy. What emphasises the emotions further is that the audience have known since Act One, Scene Three of Iago's plans, therefore the dramatic irony that is at work develops our fear for the characters and circumstances by foreshadowing the tragedy about to take place: "Must bring this monstrous birth to the world's light."1 Shakespeare's language here is metaphoric in describing Iago's plan, it foreshadows the plan as devious and cruel. Iago's long-term relationship with Othello has also made him conscious of Othello's "free and open nature/ That thinks men honest..."2 and is attentive of Othello's lack in understanding about the society; which is so full of jealousy, hatred and sin, making the plot for tragedy workable.

    • Word count: 2221
  4. Aristotle wrote in Poetics that tragedy should contain incidents arousing pity and fear and thus prove cathartic for an audience. To what extent does the plot of Arthur Millers play, All My Sons

    Where society is dysfunctional, Keller's choice simply remains to ignore them and their changing platforms: "...here's a guy is lookin' for two Newfoundland dogs. Now what's he want with two Newfoundland dogs?"3 The audience in turn pity for Keller's character, understanding his lack of knowledge in relation to the macrocosm therefore leading us towards what may be a cathartic experience. Perhaps different audiences react differently to Keller as a character. It is debatable that Keller does not understand the subtleties of life because he is lazy, selfish and his outlook is materialistic, therefore perchance building exasperation in the audience and receiving no compassion.

    • Word count: 2163
  5. Crucible plot

    The bewildering collapse of Betty arouses intense suspicion of witchcraft amongst the villagers although Abigail refuses to admit to anything but dancing in the forest. The topic of conversation between the Reverend and Abigail diverts as to why she was released from the services of Villagers John and Elizabeth Proctor; he hints at an indignity of rumours which had circulated around the Village regarding this release. In this beginning of the act the audience is introduced to the bases of the play, as well as giving them an introduction to some of the characters, mainly Reverend Paris.

    • Word count: 2113
  6. Threepenny opera plot

    It can be seen that the song sets the tone of the play with a menacing feeling, which is contrasted by the crude jokes made about Macheath's crimes that are entwined within the lyrics. Instantaneously the audience are thrown into the world of the play just by listening to the song and are left to question what is right and wrong almost immediately. Brecht wastes no time in introducing the alienation effect, in the opening he sends the audience into an unfamiliar setting, unfamiliar to a modern audience but unrecognisable to the intended German audience of 1928.

    • Word count: 2518
  7. My Mother Said I Never Should - Form, Structure and Language

    This emotional release from the darker elements of the adult scenes is known as catharsis, which is an important and deliberate function of the child scenes. My Mother Said I Never Should revolves around ordinary events. It doesn't have an unrealistic or dramatic storyline; moments like Rosie's birth are not even included. This element of realism makes the play more effective, and the characters more believable. The women are always hanging up washing or potting plants while discussing the themes of the play.

    • Word count: 2038
  8. My Mother Said I Never Should - Plot and Subplot

    After seeing something, all three are frightened, and run away. Scene 2 is set in 1940, in Chendle Hulme, where Doris is 40, and Margaret is 9. Doris is dusting the piano while singing, and is unaware that her daughter, Margaret is playing with 'Sukey'- her doll, under it. Doris shows little encouragement and doesn't participate in any jokes, or activities that Margaret does, and ignores some questions: Margaret ......What happens when you die? Doris (long pause) I'll bring you some cocoa presently. Doris disapproves of her swinging in rhythm to the piano, and implies that she isn't good enough, and that she should "be on Beethoven by now".

    • Word count: 2100
  9. Performance Studies

    Whereas with hell we had the ideas that hell should be movements with anger, sharp dynamics, stiff, strong, powerful and full bodied. We wanted hell to move together and stay pretty close to is intimidating. We did this by using low and high levels. Though we used action and reaction between heaven and hell as if it was an ongoing battle. I thought this was very effective. In the end we all joined together to show how hell had conquered, by all used strong moves and doing it all together.

    • Word count: 2283
  10. Dr.Faustus

    So in the very first scene of the drama, we notice that Faustus is an extremely intelligent person and is disappointed with all branches of knowledge that he has so far mastered. Physics, Philosophy, Law and Divinity are all absolutely inadequate for his purpose and have not been able to quench his intellectual thirst. Inspite of mastering all these great branches of knowledge, he says: "Yet art thou still but Faustus, and a Man" The soul of Faustus is afire with inordinate ambition yearning for limitless knowledge and with a an obsession for super-human powers and supreme sensuous pleasures, he utters these memorable lines: ...................."Divinity Adieu: These metaphysics of magicians, And nemocratic books are heavenly: .............................................

    • Word count: 2963
  11. Language for The Crucible

    By changing the order of the words, it makes it sound much more noble and sophisticated to what we communicate like currently and so this enhances the idea of being in a different time period. Another thing is the way the characters address each other in the play, it reflects a very formal society. Elizabeth Proctor is referred to as Goody Proctor; this is normally used to refer to a person within a good relationship and refers to them being a good wife.

    • Word count: 2180
  12. Bouncers Plot adn Sub Plot

    The Ladies then carry on talking about clothes and the night, whilst Ralph almost gets burnt by the hair dryer. * We then switch to the lads at the barbers. This scene introduces us to Jerry, Terry, Baz and Kev. Eric plays Baz, Ralph becomes Jerry, Les turns into Kev and for the moment Judd plays the brusque barber. We see Ralph reading a dirty magazine whilst Eric is about to get his haircut and the barber is making jokes about the cut he will give him.

    • Word count: 2300
  13. romeo and juliet

    Juliet's nurse and mother tell her and suggest that 'Paris' becomes her husband. Then becomes the first of many problems. this ball has been thrown by the Capulet family and therefore Romeo and his friends sneak into the party, Tybalt (Romeos worst enemy) spots Romeo and is angry and tells his father, but he refuse to let Tybalt cause trouble at the party. Romeo then sees Juliet and is breath taken by her, its love at first sight and then they run of together and kiss. Only after the party do the two lovers realize that they are from the two rival families.

    • Word count: 2477
  14. How do the micro elements cinematography and mise-en-scene contribute to the creation of a tense atmosphere and encourage the audience to empathise with the protagonists in the death sequence of Richard Kelly's Donnie Darko.

    The car however is going to fast, and due to Bridget not being able to move, she cannot move out of the path of which the car is travelling, consequently she gets ran over. Donnie then realises what has happened. Donnie is shocked by this, and shoots the driver with a gun. The sequence then carries on to the next day, as a weird cloud formation has occurred. From this sequence I will analyse the cinematography and mise-en-scene contribute to the creation of a tense atmosphere and to encourage the audience to empathise with the protagonists.

    • Word count: 2041
  15. Free essay

    Literary development of the legend of Robin Hood

    It is not known exactly when the Robin Hood tales first began but the character is first mentioned in 1377 in the Vision of Piers Plowman where the writer says "I do not know my paternoster perfectly, but I know rhymes of Robin Hood". For the name to be mentioned without any further explanations means Robin Hood must have been already well known before this date. Although none of the early rhyme's have survived, we do know they were told by minstrels which travelled around the country, performing for people in the middle ages.

    • Word count: 2156
  16. Analyze and comment on the effectiveness of media devices used to present war in sections of 'Braveheart' and Saving Private Ryan'

    The other movie I will be looking at is Braveheart. Braveheart is a passionate blockbuster about Scottish hero William Wallace, a commander who, from 1927 to 1305 AD, led revolt against the ruling English that eventually led to the independence of Scotland. It is also a multi Oscar winning movie, and was directed by the main character: Mel Gibson. Until Braveheart came out, Wallace was not a particularly well known historical figure outside of Scotland. But, Mel Gibson's almost three hour 'tour de force of film making' changed all of that.

    • Word count: 2344
  17. Analysing Vocal Performance

    make money and get famous, this was another way for Andy Kaufman to create his own surreal world and create real reactions and emotions from his audience. I used many clips to analyse Tony Clifton's vocal performances and in the appendix are the two scripted versions used from the presentations. Also included are stressed points where he uses common voice attributes. Accent The character Tony Clifton has an american accent with a hint of italian making it sometimes difficult to transcribe what he is saying.

    • Word count: 2198
  18. How does Brian Clark make use of dramatic techniques to make the audience sympathise and empathise with Ken?

    I merely want the doctors to recognise the fact." This shows that Ken agrees with euthanasia and believes in choice. He is choosing to be discharged from the hospital, not asking for anyone to kill him. The other main characters in the story are Dr. Emerson, Dr. Scott and John. Dr. Emerson is the main consultant and doesn't agree with euthanasia. He believes the hippocratic oath prevents him from allowing Ken to die even though Ken has an opposite view. He is just doing his job and wants the best for his patients.

    • Word count: 2601
  19. Media Production

    which helped as it gave us different ideas as what our thriller should look like. We did this research by watching the opening to these thrillers and writing notes about the different aspects which affected the atmosphere of the thriller and what the key conventions were of these, mise-en-scene, sound, camera, titles and editing/graphics. The most important thing that I found while analysing the thrillers was the importance to keep the audience on the "Edge of their seat" and wanting more and to keep them in the dark so the need to watch the rest of the movie to find what happens either before or after the opening sequence.

    • Word count: 2244
  20. The character of Kate Keller, created by Arthur Miller and presented to us in the play of "All My Sons" is a very important and central character, a woman with her own strong views on life

    "See what happened to the tree, what's mother going to say?" When Chris first mentions his mother in the play, the mood on stage immediately changes as the dialogue and behavior of the characters becomes much more serious and tense. In a conversation between Chris and Joe, they talk about hearing her up and walking around in the night. There is a tree in the back garden which was planted when Larry was born. He would have been twenty-seven this month, and the tree a symbol of him, blew down that night in the heavy storms.

    • Word count: 2309
  21. The author Michael Frayn has used many different devices in order to sustain the tension in the novel "Spies"

    I can't breathe. And all at once the darkness dissolves in a flood of moonlight. Neither of us moves. Neither of us breathes". A similar technique which can be commonly seen within this novel is the use of ellipses, these are once again used by authors as they make pauses in the story, show an unfinished thought or at the end of a sentence, trailing off into silence, "Cloth, yes... a lot of cloth... different sorts of cloth... some of it smooth, some of it fibrous...

    • Word count: 2722
  22. Production Log - Thriller Project The brief task was to produce an opening sequence to a thriller film, aimed at fifteen or eighteens, including titles and last about two to three minutes.

    were excellent choices and we were able to adapt our own ideas and mix them together. For example, the mysterious character in Suspects is hidden away from screen or is covered by his hat and we only see extreme close ups of his eyes and hands. This is featured in our thriller and creates an enigma for the audience. Both 'Crime Story' and 'Police Story' have flashbacks and jump cuts to put the audience at the edge of their seats. The protagonists in both movies suffer from loss and instability as they are chased by the antagonists.

    • Word count: 2203
  23. Analyse the techniques used in the sequence in which the alien emerges in 'war of the world's' (Spielberg, 2005) and comment on their effect.

    It helps the audience relate to the film and how the people feel as it involves them in the feelings and thoughts because the audience as well does not yet know what it is or could be and can only guess. Another way Spielberg tries to create an anxious atmosphere is by using various camera shots such as; a mid-shot during the conversation so that the audience concentrates on the three involved in the conversation; it includes the audience in the discussion.

    • Word count: 2661
  24. Analyse the opening of the horror film 'Scream'

    This puts you in the position of the victim in the film (Casey). As the letters are white this shows it is going to be a scary movie because white is the colour for fear and innocence. Again the audience won't know this but their sub conscious will. The audience is now trapped in this phase. As the letters have moved in it moves to phase two where there starts to be the ringing of a telephone as sound effects and also a slow and normal heartbeat and screaming. This is another sign to show that the film is going to be scary.

    • Word count: 2732
  25. Essay on Jaws

    The music then stays at the same tempo as the shark is attacking the girl and the music then ends as the shark has eaten the girl and has then left. The second time you hear the music is on the second attack. There are people on the sea and on the beach. The audience begins to hear the music as the camera begins to be filmed from underwater from something's point of view. This time the music starts fast and stays at a steady speed and the camera moves around as if it's looking for something.

    • Word count: 2825

Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • "Citizen Kane is often called the greatest film ever made. With close examination of the opening scenes, discuss the significant artistic features and cinematic techniques that led to this response."

    "A different example of Welles' mise-en-shot having great effect is the use of single shots from one angle for extended periods of time. This is a technique rarely employed in modern films, with directors preferring to jump to different angles frequently, showing as much as possible in a different way. This can feel strange to a modern viewer, and I found myself watching some of the interview scenes especially, just waiting for the camera to change, even just for a close-up, but it rarely does. A scene from the newsreel gives a good overall impression of the film. When Thatcher is shown calling Kane a communist, a union leader declares him a fascist, and Kane refers to himself as "One thing only- an American." These different views of Kane are symbolic of the way we only get what people who knew him thought of him, and as the newsreel director said, "what he did." We never find out the real truth, only other people's views, and although clues are given (after all, not many would believe that this cold businessman would so fondly keep his childhood sledge) we never really know the man himself. Michael Whiteman"

  • Compare the Opening Scenes of the Two Film Versions of Lord of the Flies

    "In my opinion the modern film version of 'Lord of the Flies' is the most effective. I feel this way because firstly it is in colour which to me provides a clearer picture and gives a better atmosphere as you can see the change in lighting. And also the fact that not as much information was given makes the audience feel more intrigued as to what is happening. The music in the modern version was a lot more smoother in the sense that it seemed to fit better, and it wasn't just like a series of sounds put together unlike in the first film. Both directors interpreted the novel in their own way and came out with virtually totally different beginnings, showing the change of the way of thinking from the early sixties to the late eighties when the modern version was produced."

  • Analyse 'drugs the facts' and 'The Score,' looking at how genres have been used and subverted in order to attract specific target audiences. How effective is this?

    "In conclusion I think that both drugs leaflets are to an extent effective at using and subverting genres in order to attract a specific target audience. However I feel that 'The Score' was the most successful at attracting a specific target audience through its use of several borrowed generic features found in teenage magazines, the Internet, scientific text books, and various others."

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