Ferris Buellers Day Off Essay
‘Ferris Buellers Day Off’ is one of the most popular teen comedies of the eighties containing quotes that were constantly repeated.
It was released in 1986 and directed by famous director ‘John Hughes’.The film is a study of a charismatic teenager played by Matthew Broderick. His character pretends to be ill to get the day off ‘high school’.The opening to the movie shows the first of all of his tricks to get the day off.The titles begin with diegetic sound which is the radio inside the house. The radio, although a simple prop, gives an enigma code.
The radio expresses that the day is a beautiful one, which is why Ferris wants the day off in the first place. It is a very important prop, with out it, the audience wouldn’t fully understand the opening scene and why that day is so special to have off.The opening shot shows the family house- a normal ‘white picket’ fence suburban house. This shot is shown to represent the normality of the Buellers and coonnotates their wealth. As the house shot is on screen the words ‘Ferris’ are repeated by what the audience then finds out to be his Mother.
This streams to the Extreme close up of Ferris. When he appears on screen the diegetic sound of the radio fades to raise the level of impact to introduce the main character.The beginning of the dialogues between characters starts when shots of Ferris and his parents have both been shown. The low angle shot of the parents show their authority over Ferris.
But the audience then realise they are being manipulated by Ferris. The angles of the camera help with the affect of the scene.During the dialogue between Ferris and his parents, Jeanie, the sister enters the scene, first of with close ups of her body, revealing characteristics of her. The body language she shows divulges the attitude she has towards the situation and the jealousy she has of Ferris. This is then added to by the dialogue.
The long shot of Ferris’ room reveals information about Ferris which expose his interests and reasons he acts rebellious. It shows things such as Televisions which again shows the wealth of the family, and how spoilt Ferris is, linking to Jeanie’s jealousy of him. The jealousy part gives hints to the rest of the film.Once the bedroom scene dissolves, it seems when his parents leave, the films starts, and a post modern technique is used. Broderick’s character starts talking to the audience as if to get them to understand what has happened and the reasons he wants the day off.
While talking he is doing other actions, such as building what seems to look like an alarm device giving an enigma code for the rest of the film.The opening sequence runs just over 2 minutes and before changing into a shot of a teacher and a black board which doesn’t follow Ferris’ plan to take the day off so the audience know other characters are going to be introduced. On a denotational level the opening sequence is simply a boy getting the day off school, on a connotational level however the sequence is full of images and dialogue which prepare the audience for the themes of the film. For example, when Ferris is showering that is a quick shot of the shower handle moving upwards, which perhaps is phallic imagery, suggesting things later on.The music being played through the sequence is MTV’s theme tune.
And the music is lowered when Ferris is talking. The music represents who the film is aimed at, and basically adding towards MTV’s cult in the 80s.The sequence creates almost an atmosphere. It’s an energetic opening with images and dialogue which help lead in to the next scene. The close ups, long shots, props and music all are constructed to make the teen comedy unique and to show us the nature of a rebellious teenager.