After many changes to the ideas for the Preliminary Task, with themes that included Scott Pilgrim against the World and Mr Bean, we came up with the idea of an action based film, with sort of an MI5 twist. We then decided that we would add humour to the piece and therefore add in Perry the Platypus from Phineas and Ferb on Disney Channel. We first decided what we would look like, and be portrayed as in the piece and started planning the story board. We came to the conclusion that we would all wear black to get into the mind set of secret agents, and focused more on the action in the film. Hazel and Jessi were going to be less able to do all the stunts and tricks whereas I am the professional, and could perform all perfectly. Hazel and Jessi were also new recruits and in training. After them turning up late they were to be on a mission to find Agent P (Perry the Platypus) which was found out to be in the same room the entire time. The final clip is called a ‘Platypus Tale’.
We decided to make the idea challenging on purpose so that we could experiment with the different camera shots and play with the editing and sound to try and get to grips with this process to make our lives easier with the main task and make that look as professional as possible.
The shots we used were long shots, wide shots, close ups, and mid shots; these helped to show the characters and the meanings, get the best view and create match on action. We added in zoom to make the film more effective, but we learned to not use this in the main task because it looked manufactured, unprofessional and broke the continuity. We also used a master shot of someone doing a cartwheel as our establishing shot.
Another thing that broke our continuity was the changing of location, because in the first location the lighting was not bright enough we had to change so that the camera would pick up all the expressions of the characters faces. However something that didn’t break the continuity was that the whole group wore black to keep in costume with a typical spy, which helped us to keep this motion.
We learnt that if we made the clip longer in the timeline it would make the clip go in slow motion. This was used with Perry the Platypus. We used text too so that when we needed to put the opening titles in our main task it would be easier and quicker.
We used our mise-en-scene very well and everything that needed to be in the frame was and any unnecessary things were not, although when we replayed what we had filmed we realised that we had not used a tripod and therefore our filming was slightly shaky, however when we film our main task we have decided to use a tripod to make our filming as perfect as can be, however this has been a learning point because we all got to use the camera ourselves and filmed well.
One of the cons of our preliminary task was the sound that we had not planned, i.e. background noise which happened when we press record, so in our main we would find a more suitable place to film with no distractions. We also added non diegetic sound into the clip in the editing process, this was very successful.
The brief clearly stated that the skills we must have used were:
Shot/reverse shot, match on action and 180 degree angle. However, whilst editing we realised that we had deleted some of our footage and to make sure that the storyline made sense we had to delete the clip which we had used the shot/reverse shot for, therefore the audience do not believe that there are people having a conversation because it was not believable enough. We were not pleased with our 180-degree angle, as it looked unprofessional. All in all, we need to make sure that when filming the main task, we abide by the brief and not adjust it to our liking. However, on the other hand, we used match on action really well, and due to that, the viewer cannot notice some of the edits.
This preliminary task created a kind of spoof with the seriousness of MI5 but the comedy moment with Perry the Platypus. This task has helped my grow and ready to improve for the main task.