Genre is interesting as there is so many different types of film and they all have different characteristics to allow them to fall into a certain genre, and obviously its the same for short films too.

Different Genres:

  • Horror
  • Action
  • Thriller
  • War
  • Adventure
  • Documentary
  • Film Noir ?

For example last year I spent a lot of time looking at the thriller genre and the conventions of it in order to create my film trailer. A film has to have these certain conventions to fall into a genre for example a horror would have low-key lighting, jump scares and a tense score. However some films have more than one genre as they have conventions of many different genres, some films also decide to break conventions of the genre which can be risky if unsuccessful but can also be really effective and make the film different to any other film in this genre. Sometimes an audience enjoys these twists in conventions as its different to anything they have seen before but it can also be risky as an audience is expecting something different and usually know what they like, it just depends if the director is willing to take this risk or not.

Many short films I have watched have a moral ending and have a deep message behind them. It is argued that short film is its own genre as they mostly are all very similar with a message and leave an impact on people but this isn’t always the case so I would say that you couldn’t say short film is its own genre as they could also follow conventions of other genres.


Memento is a film which I love and after doing research on Film Noir I was excited to discover that it is a modern version of a Film Noir. The reason I love it so much is because its narrative actually goes backwards and is really interesting to watch, the main character in the film can only remember things for up to 20 minutes and we discover how this came to be and if the people in his life are actually being true to him.


As you can see in the beginning of this clip the lighting is really cleverly placed onto his face and each shot is aesthetically pleasing for the viewer. It is very stylistic and you can tell each shot is really thought about. I really like the Film Noir style and how its all carefully put together and it is used extremely well in this film.

This film isn’t all Film Noir but the use of it works really well for the storyline. It seems complicated but its a film you just have to watch to understand and I would highly recommend it.

After seeing quite a few versions of Film Noir now, both modern and old, I am looking forward to creating my own one.



Film Noir

What is Film Noir?

Film Noir is mainly linked to black and white films as it started in the 1940s but this isn’t all that its about. What makes a film a Film Noir is the use of single source lighting, strong graphic and low angles. Film Noir is very aesthetically pleasing and often uses stark imagery to create shadows. It is said that each shot must be able to be screenshoted and created into its own picture, each shot is just artsy and perfect.


What made Film Noir so popular was how different it was, it contradicted Hollywoods musicals and comedies which they were realising at the time. They were also released around the time men were coming back from war so women had to go back to being the housewives and to less important roles, so the use of the femme fatale (which is a major part of a Film Noir) made them feel important again. Femme fatale is the use of a dominant female character.


  • Urban environment
  • Rain soaked streets
  • Claustrophobic interiors
  • Neon signs
  • Femme fatale

Theres so many characteristics but I believe these to be of importance and a necessity.

John Alton was an American cinematographer who was the cinematographer of a famous Film Noir called ‘The Big Combo’. This film is about a police lieutenant who has pressure on him from a gang. He is helped by one of the gang members wives, who’s jealous of her husbands affair, who helps him close net on his enemy.

From just looking at the descriptions of this film and looking at still images I can already understand how a Film Noir is made, this example has all the characteristics expected in the film. From the Femme Fatale to stark lighting, ‘The Big Combo’ rarely has grey in this it, its all black and white. I am interested to see how a Film Noir is made and I now want to produce my own which is something I will definitely be doing.

It is argued that a Film Noir is actually a genre of film which I personally agree with as it has all the aspects a genre needs, it has its own characteristics and is not like any other genre out there, I don’t see any reason why it isn’t its own genre.

I really like Film Noir’s and I am interested to look more into them as I love the artsy side of it as this really intrigues me and I think I would find this very enjoyable to film.

I started to take my own pictures, to start off, playing with shadows and lighting in the Film Noir style:


Initial Ideas

My initial thoughts is to create a short film showing a story between two people who met online and the positive effects the internet can bring to a persons life as this is very rare to see, social media usually is presented in a particularly negative light. We are warned of the people that we can meet online and how awful they are but are never shown the good sides of it and how great social media can actually be.


Chosen Brief

After looking at all the briefs and looking at so many different examples for each one I have decided that I will be making a short film. I came to this decision as in the future this is something I want to be doing, I hope to be working on films and to get into that industry. The task of creating a short film is going to be a long difficult process but it is also exciting and will be fulfilling to see all my work put together to create one piece, I am looking forward to see where this takes me and how it will turn out. I didn’t choose the other briefs as I am not interested in advertisement as this isn’t something I feel confident doing and producing, the music video brief sounds interesting but I don’t believe I will be able to fully portray my filming skills with this brief along with the film trailer brief, along with the fact that I believe it’d be rather difficult.

Before starting to do this I want to reflect on my work from AS media, below is the trailer my group and I made:

We were really happy with how our title sequence turned out as we put a lot of work into it. I believe the most successful aspect was the mise-en-scene as we were able to happily choose a location and used props which accurately reflected our chosen genre.

To improve the camera work could have been better as it is shaky at times but I am looking forward to having a go at doing this myself as I didn’t have a go using the camera. I am slightly nervous about having to direct the film and tell people what to do as this isn’t something I am completely comfortable doing but I think it will boost my confidence and help me for the better.

I am happy with my media skills for the present but am looking forward to enhance them and learn new skills.

Brief 4 – Film Trailer

This brief is to create a promotional package for a new film, to include a teaser trailer, together with two of the following:

  • A film magazine front cover, featuring the film
  • A poster for the film
  • A website homepage for the film

Creating a film trailer usually includes little snippets of the film all put together to promote the film, usually the best parts but using cliffhangers to make the audience want to watch the film. This brief could be hard as each clip would have to be located in a different place and would take a long time to put together.

I really like this trailer made by a student as it is extremely professional and doesn’t give too much away about the film.


This trailer, also made by a student, I believe, is very successful. I really like the titles as they match the atmosphere and genre of the film.


Tis professional film trailer for the film Lalaland is really good as we get an accurate representation of the film and an idea of the story. The trailer builds up throughout the trailer as the music rises.


This trailer is very similar, shows some of the best bits to keep the viewer interested but also doesn’t give too much away.

Brief 3 – Advertisement

Advertisement, I think, would be a lot of fun as I would get to create my own product and be as creative as I want with it.

The advertising brief includes making a package for a new product or service, to include two TV adverts, together with two of the following options:

  • A radio advertisement
  • A TV program sponsorship sequence
  • A web pop up


There are so many different kinds of adverts out there, all of different lengths and different ways of manipulating and convincing the viewer to buy the product, this is the main aim for an advert. Some adverts include a story. This advert below is for Extra gum but includes a love story, it makes the product and advert memorable.


Some are a lot more simple, simply just trying to romanticise the product and make people crave the product. This advert for Kettles crisps is short but effective.


Adverts can be made in so many different ways and I can be as creative as I want with this brief, I believe it will portray the range of skills I have and allow me to develop them further. This brief is extremely interesting.

Brief 2 – Short Film

The second brief is creating a short film which sounds very daunting but also exciting, it will allow me to enhance my creative side and make a film about something I am interested in.

This brief includes making a short film along with two of the following things:

  • A poster for the film
  • A film magazine review page featuring the film
  • A website homepage for the film


I think the main issue with this brief would be trying to consider a creative and interesting idea which is also something I am passionate about. I personally find it hard to come up with ideas as I am not the most creative person however once this has been established and I get inspiration from other short films I think my camera skills will help me create a really good short film.

There are so many different types of short films, some with deep meaningful messages and a big resolution, some which are just fun and enjoyable.

I really enjoyed this professional short film called Post-It which has a really good story line as well as a moral ending with a message which is ‘be nice to people and try to see the best in them’ which I think is really great and positive. It leaves a mark on the viewer.


I have watched some A2 media short films made by other students which I really liked.

This one is called Psychosis and I liked it as its not only a great short film but it creates awareness for mental illness which is something I am interested in looking at and doing.


Going back to the professional short films, I like the use of social media in this one.


I found this short film really interesting as we see the difficulties in a long distance relationship but we only ever see one person. The use of loose frames shows even though she’s in a relationship she’s still isolated and alone. Its really clever. I also am really interested in how they did the text animation and how they were able to put all of this together.

Making a short film sounds difficult but I believe with the right mindset I would be able to complete this task and create a great short film.

Brief 1: Audio

The first brief is Audio. This is interesting as I am very passionate about music and I love discovering new music and thinking about the meaning behind songs, I really love watching music videos and seeing how a director can interpret a song to create a visual version of the music.

This brief includes making a music video no longer than 5 minutes as well as including 2 of the following things:

  • A cover for the release of a digipack
  • magazine advertisement for the digipack
  • A website homepage for the band or artist


Music videos were first born in the 1920s when short films were made along with music, this is what it dates back to. Since then music videos have been made to promote a song and artist and create something people will remember,  something visual so a song can be memorable. There is so many different kinds of music videos being made, some can be very simple like Little Mix’s ‘Touch’ which includes the band members singing and dancing to the song. This is a very pop, mainstream video.


As well as this if a song is about romance or a break up it could be the artist singing along looking sad and broken. A music vide I really like is the one for the song ‘Intertwined’ by Dodie Clark which is about mental health, the song can be interpreted in so many different ways and when the music video was released people were quite shocked by it, she gave a totally different meaning to the song, the meaning which she intended for it. I really like this video as I love how it can be interpreted in different ways by different people, its a piece of art.


Making a music video sounds exciting but theres so many things that I would find difficult and challenging whilst making it. It could be quite expensive, both of the videos above took a lot of production. If I was to lip syncing it could very easily be out of time and would ruin the whole video.

I really like this brief as it is something I am extremely interested in and I want to be able to put my message out there to show people through song, this could be a very exciting experience if I were to choose it.


My name is Isobel Evans and I am now moving into AS media after having a very enjoyable year creating a title sequence and developing my media skills in AS. After my experience in AS media I am excited to learn new skills this year and enhance my abilities. Its going to be interesting working on my own this year and being able to use all my own ideas and create something which I am really passionate about.

These are the briefs for A2 Media which I have to choose between:

Audio – A promotional package for the release of an album, including a music promo video and 2 of the following:

  • A cover for its release as part of a digipack (CD/DVD package)
  • A magazine advertisement for the digipack (CD/DVD package)
  • A website homage for the band or artist

Short Film – A short film lasting approximately 5 minutes, together with 2 of the following:

  • A poster for the film
  • A film magazine review page featuring the film
  • A website homepage for the film

Advertising – An advertising package for a new product or service, to include two TV advertisements, together with two if the following:

  • A radio advertisement
  • A TV programme sponsorship sequence
  • A web pop up

Film Trailer – A promotion package for a new film including a toaster trailer, together with two of the following:

  • A film magazine front cover, featuring the film
  • A poster for the film
  • A website homepage for the film