The mise en scene elements implemented into Run Lola Run are universal and have been used by big name Hollywood directors. An example of such is ‘Vertigo’ directed by Alfred Hitchcock in 1958. Tom Tykwer was a fan of Hitchcock and was familiar with his work. He decided to administer two (2) of his ideas. Similar to Vertigo, there was a significant reference to spirals. For example, in Run Lola Run, the ‘spiralé’ café located behind Manni’s phone box can be seen in all three (3) scenarios. As well as the café, Tykwer had also re-invigorated the spiral staircase in the animation sequence at the beginning of every scene, which had been taken directly out of Vertigo. Sound;
The technique of sound within movies is a powerful element of film style. The most important element throughout the film is the music score. The constant “upbeat/techno” styled rhythm of music in Run Lola Run, is the backbone of what viewers are seeing. In the first half of the scenario’s the music, speech and noise is moderately dense.
It is clear that the ‘What If?’ genre sets itself apart from traditional Hollywood film by specific stylistic conventions. The four technical elements of mise en scene, cinematography, editing and sound have worked together through Run Lola, Run to create this particular style of film making. Tykwer’s characteristic use of flashback/forward editing, rhythmic soundtrack, close ups and shortcuts and costume choices emphasise the overall kinetic style, key to ‘What If?’ genres. Furthermore, these salient techniques create a sense of narrative progression that guides viewers through what could potentially be a rather ambiguous story. This essay demonstrates how Tom Tykwer’s stylistic choices through ‘Run Lola, Run’ combine the four technical elements of filmmaking to harness conventions of an intricate genre to shape a fast-paced yet succinctly formed film.
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