Effective cinematography is what makes a film exceptionally well. These techniques are essential in portraying the story that the director, and cinematographer are trying to convey. The choices they make will shape the outcome of the film. This is true to films such as American Me, A Bronx Tale, and American History X. All three of these films have different plots, but are connected through production design decisions that have impacted the story. It is through this art that the plots of these films were executed effectively. Elements such as lighting design, the size of each shot, and aspect ratios are indicative of a story in itself. These elements are what connect such distinctive stories.
Lighting played a big role in the dark stories of American Me, A Bronx Tale, and American History X. All three films show indication of dark lighting in distressed situations. In American Me, for example, the rape scene of Montoya’s mother was dark, and the only lighting evident was realistic lighting. Some of it penetrated the shot from the street light, and the rest was from a very low-lit lamp inside the tattoo parlor. Even when the shot was taken outside for his father’s beating, the scene decorated with minimal lighting. Reynaldo Villalobos keeps consistent to this notion when he implements this technique in A Bronx Tale. When Lorenzo was lecturing his son about the troubles that come from a gangster life, the shot is extremely dark, even casting a shadow over Calogero’s face. This clearly foreshadowing the future of this character, and the events he will experience in the streets of New York. What was unique about this film, in contrast to the American Me, was the fact that most crimes were committed in daylight, with full lighting. The dark scenes were unique only to those special moments between specific characters. In American History X, before one of the most gruesome parts of the movie, Derek Vinyard is in his room informed by his little brother about an...
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