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When I work in a movie I'm tasked with creating its overall style and setting
I'm a production designer.
My job is to assist the director in telling the story visually.
In this series, we'll be looking at some of the best examples on how this work helps to shape a story.
How much can a room tell you about someone?
Spoiler alert, it's a lot.
Amélie was nominated for the Production Design Academy Award in 2002.
It won Aline Bonetto the BAFTA for her work in developing the world of the movie.
Audrey Tautou plays the part.
She's lonely but generous.
Her days are spent with a borrowed cat, working at a cafe and shopping at Monsieur Collignon's.
He's a nasty man, and so she sets out to get revenge.
Here's how good Bonetto's work is: if you nodded off for half the movie and woke up just about here.
All you need for the revenge to seem to work would be to open your eyes wide.
Forget the plot and let the set and props do the talking.
As soon as we walk in we find a tedious array of earth tones and an excess of old mossy greens.
These are colors of tradition and stability that create a heavy lethargic mood.
The house is kept tidy and clean, the materials are harsh and the lines are straight.
Symmetry is everywhere. In the 42 size slippers carefully laid down next to each other.
perpendicular to the couch, in the lamp, the frames, in those two pillows over there.
the old-fashioned wallpaper and decorations convey a long-established home and habits.
This is the house of a lonely man.
someone who finds comfort in routine structure and predictability.
You need this context so when Amélie does this:
They intuitively know the importance of her deed. Yes, her actions are small,
but because of the creative work of the production designer setting up the room in relation to the character
when Amélie tampers with his stuff, the severity of the punishment inflicted is plain to see.
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'Amélie': Designing Emotion

3208 Folder Collection
Rachel Kung published on August 4, 2018    Rachel Kung translated    Evangeline reviewed
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