Trainspotting: Choosing Life or Not?
Trainspotting: Choosing Life or Not?

Trainspotting: Choosing Life or Not?

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  • Pages: 6 (1423 words)
  • Published: August 9, 2017
  • Type: Research Paper
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The film I have chosen to take my scene from is called "Trainspotting.

" This film is set in Edinburgh follows one Mark Renton, an aimless Scottish youth who, with his friends, Spud and Sick Boy choose not to "choose life," opting instead for the empty but pleasurable life of heroin addiction. The film follows Mark and the gang as they quit and get hooked again, have disastrous flings with women, have a couple of sick, but hilarious mishaps, and get in trouble with their violent, hard-drinking (but not drug-using) friend Begbie.The scene in this film that I have chosen is the scene where Renton realizes that he is missing out on something in his life, that drugs are the only thing he does for fun. He realizes he


hasn't been with a girl in a long time.

So Renton goes out with his friends to a club to try and find himself a girl. The opening to this scene is in a club and mid and long shots are used to show all the people in the club dancing and so that the audience gets a full sense of the scenes setting. The song playing is "temptation" by New Order which is very appropriate to the scene as the word temptation is exactly how Renton is feeling at this point, he is tempted by the amount of women he sees. The song also fits the year that this film is set in as the music playing is what would be playing in clubs around that time.As the scene moves on there is a long shot of Begbie talking to a woman.

The reason this i

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a long shot is to make it like the perspective is that of Renton it's like an onlookers view. In this shot we see Begbie chatting up a woman by boasting about his skills on a pool table as is apparent from his actions. Straight after the long shot of Begbie there is one of Sick Boy kissing a woman this again is to create the perspective of an onlooker. The next shot is a close up shot of Renton who is standing with what looks to be a gang of men who haven't got a woman to keep them occupied.

In this shot Renton is looking right ahead of him, there is a look of determination in his eyes or maybe "temptation" referring back to the song. I think also it may be the look of desire to leave the group of losers as seen in the film "Gregory's Girl" where the two boys who want to get girlfriends can't seem to get them.The use of the converging storylines heightens the relationship between them simply and effectively. A long shot which is slowly zoomed of Tommy and Spud is next this long shot is to show how distanced they are from the crowd of people dancing, this, in my opinion shows a contrast maybe between the life of the drug addict and the normal people in the club. The distance shown by use of the camera shot I feel has links to the monologue at the start. They are having a conversation about spuds sex life.

The camera then cuts to the ladies toilets where a panning shot is used to capture the movement

of the two girlfriends moving from the toilet cubicles to the mirrors to do their make-up. The next camera shot used is a close-up from the side of the girls, it's almost like a hidden camera type shot to give the audience the impression they are listening into a private conversation. The Camera then cuts back to Spud and Tommy again who are having the same conversation but ironically are not trying to keep it down but rather are shouting it very loud the shot used here is also a close-up which is used in this effect the make you feel almost like a third member of the conversation. Their girlfriends then arrive and the camera is pointing up at them with a close-up shot and the camera angle is from the point of view of Spud and Tommy looking up at their girlfriends as if they are superior, the camera cuts quickly back to their boyfriends the camera is slightly further back making them look small the camera also points down on them as if they are helpless and inferior to the girls as they answer the question they've been asked it creates tension.

In the next part of this scene Renton is again shown standing on his own, this time the camera is more of a close-up shot of his upper body this is to show the tension on his face and the "temptation" that is arising in him, he narrates saying that the days of impotence have gone and his sex driver has returned and its drives him to desperation, as he says this the songs fades back in and Renton then walks

into the crowd.The shots used when he is walking through the crowd are close up shots of the girls he has his eye on. I think the director chose to use these shots as it gives the audience the perspective of Renton the camera works its way round women looking at how they move, exactly how Renton is doing with his eyes. During this part of the scene the camera cuts to each one of his friends who are having intimate fun with their partners and acquaintances. The camera then centers back on Renton and pans around him then cuts to a long shot through the crowd of a girl standing smoking at the bar, just as the camera cuts to her the song changes to "Atomic" by sleeper. This song fits perfectly as its lyrics dictate the future events in the film.

The camera follows this girl as she gets up to leave the club a panning shot it used it follows her walking round the crowd of people. After the camera cuts to a view from the door looking ahead as the girl walks towards it this gives an odd effect, it makes the audience aware of her "vulnerability" in a way as she is walking past some men and one of them advances on her. She quickly abolishes the idea that she is vulnerable with her actions.Outside the club as the girl exits the door there is a long shot of her, as she starts walking a wide long shot is used to show the size of the club and how empty the street is, this gives the audience a sense of


As Renton talks to the girl the camera is following them using a tracking shot as they walk. The use of this camera technique adds a sense of haste to the movements of Renton and the girl. The conversation becomes a bit more serious and at this point a close-up shot is used to show an attraction and closeness between the two that is not apparent to Renton as he feels she is going to tell him where to go.The taxi pulls up and the girl walks over to it the shot used here is a wide shot of the taxi as she walks into it and leaves the door open. The still image that you see for a very short space of time of the girl sitting in the taxi with the door open and the light that gives it a warm look, gives an inviting message out to Renton who is standing in the cold wet outdoors as the shot of him shows.

Renton runs into the taxi and the taxi drives off out of sight of the camera. This is an appropriate end to this scene as we realise that Renton has fulfilled his temptation that seen during the scene.Overall I think the way this scene is filmed is very effective. The camerawork and the way shots are edited together make the viewer feel involved in the scene as if they are onlookers on the events in the club.

The way the camera films the characters clearly shows their feelings. The song uses is very appropriate as the lyrics directly relate to the way Renton is feeling. The lighting aspects of the

scene are done really well and I think the use of low lighting within the club makes the scene a little more intense as wee see the feelings arise in Renton himself.

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