Shadow Of A Doubt Film Analysis

1808 Words 8 Pages
Paper 1
Describe the classical Hollywood narrative structure. Use examples from the film Shadow of a Doubt to illustrate the structure

The Narrative structure of cinema has been ductile through history. Today we have a very wide spectrum of different plotlines and structures that directors and writers get to choose from; however, the classical Hollywood narrative structure stuck to one consistent narrative structure that follows a linear timeline through 3 basic steps: equilibrium, disruption, restoration. Shadow of a doubt (Hitchcock 1943) follows these three steps throughout the timeline of the movie.
The first step of the classical Hollywood narrative structure is equilibrium, all is well. The equilibrium phase is when the viewer jumps
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This element was indicative of the movies from the era including Shadow of a Doubt. Shadow of a Doubt uses continuity editing as it flows from scene to seen with very minimal break points. The minimal break points are done through editing and shots. The dissolve transitions are used to transfer from scenes instead of an obvious break. In Shadow of a Doubt this is used near the end of the library scene, fading in a transition of women dancing as the view is seamlessly transported from Charlie at the library to her father walking through the front lawn. Reverse shots and over-the-shoulder shots also contribute to the smooth flow of shots for total immersion in the film. Classical Hollywood cinema also embraced a very linear narration that also contributes to the smooth flow of the timeline. Classical Hollywood followed a storyline that would cover three main points in the story: equilibrium, disruption, and restoration. In Shadow of a Doubt the movie begins in equilibrium and everything seems at peace. The disruption is introduced when Uncle Charlie comes into town and begins to put things on edge after Charlie slowly uncovers his dark past. The Restoration is when Charlie pushes her uncle out of the train and everything can return to the

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