eng 300- paper #2

eng 300- paper #2 - Azarmi Arash Azarmi Professor White ENG...

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Azarmi Arash Azarmi Professor White ENG 300 12/5/07 How Scorsese’s use of Cinematography Defined Raging Bull In the 1980 film Raging Bull , director Martin Scorsese utilized the camera to create a certain rhythm for the movie. The camera also was used to emphasize on certain themes and motifs. Through his creativity, Scorsese gave the viewer a clear message of what he wanted to be focused on. During the first scene, while the opening credits are being shown, we can see Jake La Motta (Robert De Niro) in the background of the ring boxing by himself. This shot is done in slow motion which makes him seem like a calm person. In addition, it also seems like he is captured inside the ring. We see him from outside of the ring as a spectator, judging him already. Then in the following scene, there is a long, continuous shot of the old Jake La Motta reciting a poem. The shot never cuts, it’s done continuously. This shows him very calm and confident. When he says “that’s entertainment” we see a close up on his face. What’s really noticeable during this shot is Jake’s broken nose which we can assume is from his previous boxing matches. What follows is a short freeze frame of young Jake La Motta in the boxing ring. Again, he says the words “that’s entertainment” and the fight continues. Now we know that boxing is entertainment, even though he broke his nose and he takes a beating every now and then. It’s still entertainment. 1
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Azarmi In the first boxing match of the movie, the camera is positioned as if we were the fighter for a brief second. This gives us the point of view of the fighter. Jake La Motta is throwing punches at the camera’s direction in a way that it seems he doesn’t have control over them. This shows us how powerful Jake is. Many close up shots are used to show the faces of the boxers and certain punches. Also, in the scene where Jake is talking to his first wife, the camera starts moving in slowly into her face but also placing her inside a frame. The frame gives the meaning that she is locked inside something. We can tell that some how Jake controls her because it started moving slowly towards her and boxing her in after he talked to her. They are not having an ordinary couple argument, and it won’t be the last fight they will have. We can also observe Scorsese use slow motion in the scene where Jake and his brother Joey (Joe Pesci) go to the annual summer dance. However, in this case slow motion is used to show the obsession that Jake has with Vickie Thailer (Cathy Moriarty). He is only focused on her and nothing else.
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