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Saturday, 22 January 2011

WS - Deconstruction of All The Boys Love Mandy Lane (Jonathan Levine, 2006)

$750,000 budget and took $41,000 on the opening weekend.

The opening shots of the film appear to be like an ordinary school day. The opening uses elliptical editing to show that time has passed and also uses transitions to change time and location. The new time and place is night time at a pool party. The pool party tells us the film is most likely set in America as pool parties are common there. The school also appears to be a typical American High School. The titles for the film are done in a Serif font, which connotes danger and is quite typical for a Slasher or horror film. The film makes use of non-diegetic sounds to create tension and fear. The setting, an isolated house at night time, also creates fear and suggests that something will go wrong.

The film uses quite a lot of binary opposition: males and females; virgins (Mandy Lane) and the sexually active (this is quite important because it is Mandy who survives); popular and geeky students and of course good VS evil is represented (this isn’t really seen in the opening scene however as the person who dies jumps to his death.) The film plays to its audience through images of the characters, for example the males are generally muscular and topless, whilst the females are good looking, thin and wearing bikinis. The film also makes use of stereotypes and counter-stereotypes; Mandy Lane appears to be a stereotypical cheerleader, but isn’t into all the sex and drugs that many others in the film are. A geeky kind of stereotype is also represented. The film opening also makes use of different camera shots to objectify women; early on there are a number of close-up shots of Mandy’s breasts and bum, suggesting this is all she is; she isn’t a person she is merely an object.
The film challenges representation in the film, whilst carrying on with some traditional reasons for people been killed in Slasher movies. The signs of sexual activity are everywhere in the opening scene. Males and females are kissing all around the scene, and are all only semi-dressed/covered. From the opening and knowledge of stereotypes, you would expect Mandy Lane to be a ‘Scream Queen’ (she is blonde, busty), but she actually comes across as more of a ‘Final Girl’ type of character, which questions representation and stereotypes within the Slasher genre. The film does carry through some things from the typical Slasher film though, for example the main things to stay away from been sex, drugs and alcohol. People doing these things, or combining all of them are likely to be punished by the killer for their sins. The film does further defy tradition by having the male character killed at the end of the opening when, traditionally, it is a female Scream Queen who is often dramatically killed at the end of the opening.

The film opening lasts 8 minutes and 25 seconds.
Click here to visit te IMDB page for 'All The Boys Love Mandy Lane'

Below is a video that inclues the opening scene:

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