Anti-hero- John Anderton
Director- Steven Spielberg
This scene is used in the film by the director to show the power that the government has over its citizens
Music and camera shots
Diegetic and non-diegetic
Diegetic- real sounds in the film
Non-diegetic- mood music, sounds that have been added
Orchestral moving towards a crescendo
Deliberate drums mimicking his heart beat
Violin sharp strokes when spiders are activated, almost mimicking their steps crescendos throughout the piece with intense strings building when spiders reach the door
Back to spiders, high violin
Strings build as spiders enter, long prolonged horror movie strings
Rolling drum beat while he is in the bath, heartbeat
Silence, only one high pitched string for suspense as the bubble floats
Dramatic strings crescendo with as the spiders get him out of the bath
Quiet in the room noisy in the hall no music
Follows spiders upstairs at low angle
Birds eye shot follows the journey of the spiders as they scan different peoples rooms and zooms in and out again on each room
Close up pan of his face under water
Lighting causes a cross on the ground
What knowledge does the viewer bring to the text:
What do you think is the director’s purpose here? Thy has the director represented these characters/setting? What might the director want you to think?
What type of person might the director be? Why?
How do the chosen cinematography techniques have an effect on the audience and the director’s purpose?
How does this extract sit within the overall context of the film?
Write a paragraph in which you respond critically to the scene You could use some of the ideas from the discussion questions and your observation notes to help you.
In the critically acclaimed film, The Minority Report directed by Steven Spielberg the soundtrack and camera angles are used to address the director’s intention of portraying a dystopian society where a totalitarian government rules through control and fear, more specifically in the ‘Spider scene’. The spider scene is a scene where Pre-crime police use robotic eye scanners called ‘Spiders’ to infiltrate a building and attempt to capture our anti-hero, John Anderton. The scene begins with the arrival of the pre-cops, a low angle shot is used to capture their descent as the aircraft is landing, this low angle is used to show the viewer how highly-esteemed the pre-cops are in society. This particular camera shot also makes the aircraft appear bigger and overpowering as it looms over the camera, just as the government’s pre-crime organization is constantly looming over its citizens and using power to control them. In this scene, music plays a huge role in building the suspense of John Anderton’s situation. The overall composition of this scene is orchestral, often moving to a crescendo. Sharp Violin strokes are heard when the spiders are activated mimicking their quick steps, their steps are also heard in a diegetic context as fast metal tapping on the tiled floor. Another low angle shot follows closely behind the spiders as they run up the stairs, making them look menacing and frightening. Spielberg creates suspense in this scene by using contrasting musical dynamics, often the same dynamics used in horror films. When the spiders are on the move there are the same sharp violin strokes, as Anderton enters the bath there is a muffled rolling drum mimicking his heartbeat and when the air bubble is floating from Anderson’s lips to the surface of the bath only one single string is heard in the otherwise prolonged silence. These contrasts keep the viewer aware that the scene is building to something very intense and is highlighted by Spielberg’s use of low and following camera shots.