For this reflection I chose to analyze the movie scene of the bar from Good Will Hunting. It’s number 17 in the playlist.

Analyze the Camera Work

After reading the article by Robert Ebert, the first thing I noticed is that as the characters enter the bar, they are in the center background of shot, while people at the bar in the foreground frame the shot. Through a lot of the scene there is a use of people to frame the shot. Also like what Robert Ebert stated in his article, the characters in the shot are either slightly off to the right or left, no one is ever directly in the center, which is usually known as the rule of thirds. I’m not sure if I agree with Ebert’s analysis that when a person is off to the right or left, they are more positive or negative. Perhaps if I watch more movies and analyze them more myself, his opinions will begin to make more sense.  He did say that these tendencies were never absolute so maybe in this particular scene, the tendencies were just not there.

I also noticed that there were leading lines of the bar lights in a couple of shots. It never even occurred to me that filmographers can use the same skills as photographers do to make a great film.



Analyze the Audio Track

There is music in the background to give the bar scene more authenticity. There is also people chatting and laughing in the background. However, that chatting practically completely stops during the dialogue among the characters, but the music continues at what seems as the same volume through out the scene. You are also able to hear the foots steps as Chuckie Sullivan (Ben Affleck) walks down the length of the bar to go talk to the girls.


Put it All Together

Once I watched it again with everything together, I noticed that when the main characters first enter the ball, two go one way around the table and the other two go another way and I wonder what the reason for this could. It may be more visually pleasing that way or they wanted to keep each character in the shot the whole time and it was easier to separate their paths. I also noticed that after the antagonist in the scene walk away, the volume of the people chatting in the background increases. The volume of the background chatting increases so slightly that unless someone is really listening, it is almost unnoticeable.



2 thoughts on “Analyze Will Hunting

  1. Hey Rachel!

    Quick heads up: When a Video is part of a playlist on YouTube, if you copy and paste the URL it will attempt to place the whole playlist on your blog. I think that’s what happened here :) I ran into that issue as well. You basically need to look up the clip on YouTube and find it by itself.

    Back to the good stuff, I LOVE Good Will Hunting! Such a fantastic movie. I have to agree with you when you state that “maybe in some scenes, there are no tendencies” I ran into this as well. I kept trying to find something in a scene and now I think it may not even have been there. I never really critiqued movies that much so I’m still very new to spotting these subtle artistic techniques.

    • Oh thank you! I was wondering about that. I’ll remember that for next time c: I am glad I was not the only one who had difficulty critiquing the movie scenes. Maybe after lots of practice, we’ll get really good at it!

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