Friends of the Earth - Assignment Example

The campaign starts off with an axe being sharpened on a sharpening stone. This is meant to confuse the audience, because we don’t actually see an axe being sharpened, we see small bright sparks flying in the air. The director uses an extreme close-up so we can’t make out what the picture actually is. This has a confused effect and keeps the audience guessing. This is also trying to make the audience carry on watching so they can make out what the picture is. Then the camera zooms out and we see an axe being sharpened. The image becomes clear and the audience realises what’s going on.

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The lighting is very low key and it is nearly pitch black. This is done the whole way through the commercial. This creates a scary atmosphere. The atmosphere is emphasised by the soundtrack, which has a horror kind of feeling. The music suits the commercial and sounds threatening and gloomy. The location is set in an artificial forest; the forest bed shows this. Now we have realised where we are and what is happening from the first establishing shot. The axe is lifted into the air; it looks as if it’s alive. There is a close-up shot on the axe; it does this so it focuses all our attention on the axe.

I think they chose the axe because it’s a deadly weapon and it attracts our attention. We see light sliding across the top of the blade, which shows how sharp the blade is and makes it look realistic. The razor-sharp axe glides down as if it is cutting down at the audience and the music starts to get faster to add to the atmosphere. Then we see an elderly pair of legs. We suddenly think we’re going to see blood and legs hacked off so we focus our attention even more. As soon as the blade is just about to hit the legs there is a quick cut and the old legs change in a split second to a fat, wide tree.

We hear a loud thud as the axe hits the tree, which is an example of diagetic sound. The thud of the tree echoes. The old pair of legs represents elderly people dying in the rainforest. The axe comes back up for a second strike. We still focus all our attention on the axe because it fills the whole of the screen with a close up shot. The axe cuts through the air again. Now the axe seems threatening and dangerous. Then we see another pair of legs but younger, they are adolescent legs. These legs represent a tree and how we are destroying them.

The music gets louder the closer the blade gets to the legs; the director does this to create a shock when it hits. There is another quick cut and the legs change into a tree when it hits; the thud is louder than before. It sounds more hurtful and has more fury and anger in the hit. The tree shoots out red sap, which represents blood. This shows us that it doesn’t just affect the trees it affects people’s lives too. But the blood is meant to shock us because we think it is the legs, which are bleeding. This time the axe had gone deeper into the tree: this represents that were killing trees bit by bit and soon there won’t be any left.

By the second shot we begin to grasp what’s going on and the picture becomes clear. At this time the lightning is still low key and dark so that it still creates a depressing and dismal mood. The axe comes up for a final third cut. We see another pair of legs but these are toddler legs about five years old. As we see a child’s pair of legs the audience watch in horror, which adds a bit of excitement to the atmosphere. They are terrified if the axe actually cuts and slices the child’s innocent legs, which adds a bit of a thrill. The lighting adds to the emotive atmosphere.

We see a close-up of the axe and then the axe beams down on its target the child’s legs. The camera pans and tracks the axe all the way down; this tries to add a bit of realism to the scene. Then there is another quick cut and the two trunks appear. The audience feel relieved. The axe slices all the way through the trunks. This shows if we carry on the way we are there will not be anymore trees left in the world and its not just about trees its affecting people as well and as the years go by, its affecting younger and younger children.

The axe went deeper and deeper into the trees: this was telling us on the first two strikes you have had your warning now stop. Then on the final strike it happened: you have destroyed all of God’s creation and you could have done something about it but you didn’t. However the audience still think oh it doesn’t affect us. So the advertisers had to think, and they came up with the inspiration of the axe heading towards us. So when the axe sliced both of the trunks at an angle it turns and comes towards the audience. There is an extreme close up which focuses on the edge of the axe.

It looks as if it was going to leap out of the television, which makes us jump. Then the music stops thumping and it is pitch black and everything goes quiet. Now this tells us it may not have affected us earlier but it does now. Now the audience thinks maybe it does affect our lives. At the closing stages of the commercial a voice over comes in, it is a deep, cold serious voice the man sounds authoritative and his voice is neutral with no accent. I think the advertisers choose a voice with authority because then the audience can accept that what he is saying is the truth because he sounds trustworthy and reliable.

The voiceover uses emotive language, words like destruction, thousands, razed, destroying, contributor and catastrophic storms. Emotive language is used to give a serious effect and create an attention catching voiceover. The voiceover says ” every year thousands of tribes people are made homeless by destruction of the worlds rainforest” They start off with a distressing sentence to catch our attention then he says “they are being robbed of their land that’s been theirs for centuries, as one acre of forest is razed to the ground every second.

Even if you couldn’t care less about any of these facts, there’s one thing you should care about-because it affects you. ” Now this sentence jumps out and grabs you and makes you realise it does affect you and what are you going to do about it. The advertisers also use graphics, they use graphics to focus our attention even more; the text is small and white and the background is black they choose black so the text stands out.

There is nothing else on the screen so we have to focus our attention on the screen. The text implies how we are destroying the rainforest and what the effects are. They appeal to self-interest. The text gives us information how to give funds and donations, where to send it and a number. It also tells us how we can help. I think the target audience is aimed at people with self-interest and in some way intelligent adults and someone who would actually do something about the demolition of the rainforest.