Film Techniques in Twelve Angry Men
Summary: Reviews the film Twelve Angry Men, directed by Sidney Lumet. Discusses the director's use of cinematic techniques, including lighting, music,and set design, to reinforce the themes of the story. ________________________________________
"Twelve Angry Men", directed by Sidney Lumet, is a film which portrays intentions significantly employed by the use of film techniques. Although entirely set in a cramped, humid jury room (except for the few minutes at the beginning and end), Lumet applies many different film techniques to great effectiveness. Lumet's usage of different types of camera shots is likeliest to be the most efficacious method of illustrating intentions in the film. Towards the beginning of the film, as the judge is stating the important criteria for the decision regarding 'reasonable doubt', the camera pans across the serious faces of all the jury members, briefly but slowly introducing all twelve of the jurors, the speed of this pan shot resembles the lengthy decision that the jurors have been faced with. As the jury leaves for the jury room, an effective, motionless and silent close up of the defendant is shown, portraying the innocence and fear of the boy. As the film enters the jury room, the frame dissolves and eventually the inside of the jury room is revealed, a dysfunctional fan is immediately seen by viewers, this is intended to expose the heat and humidity of the room to viewers. Towards the end of the film, when the majority of the jury is leaning towards an innocent vote, there is a scene where Lumet shows all the jurors voting not guilty standing faced backwards in a circle towards a juror arguing that the defendant is guilty. This scene, just like the effectiveness of many other clever frame set-ups used by Lumet, represents a 'circular rejection' it makes the one juror both physically and mentally isolated. Lumet rarely uses close-ups in the film, but when he does, they are very...
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