The movie The Graduate directed by Mike Nichols is a story of a young man called Benjamin Braddock who returns the house of his parents after graduation from the university. The main character has no definite plans regarding his career or personal life. He starts an affair with Mrs. Robinson who is wife of his father’s partner.
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Yet, later this character falls in love with her daughter, Elaine. Overall, this film is about the individual who strives to discover his identity. This opening credit sequence of this film is supposed to show the sense of insecurity and uncertainty that this person experiences, and this goal is achieved with the help of different formal elements such as mise-en-scène, cinematography, sound, and editing. This argument should be discussed in more detail.
The first part of this sequence starts with a close eye-level shot of the protagonist. A few seconds later the camera moves backward and the viewers can see that the main character is on the airplane. This shot includes diegetic or identifiable sounds. For instance, one can mention the voice of the flight attendant.
This element is necessary because in this way the authors can tell the viewers about the destination at which the main character arrives. Additionally, the close-up shot is important because the film-makers want to show the main character stares blankly into space. He looks like a person who is deeply obsessed with some question or dilemma that he cannot resolve. This is one of the details that should not be overlooked.
During the second shot of the sequence, the viewers can see Benjamin Braddock moving on an up escalator. It should be mentioned that the camera operator takes a medium-distance dolly shot. The use of this technique helps the audience see the facial expression of the main character, and one can see that he feels very strained.
This is main impression that he can produce on the onlooker. Yet, the most important element of this shot is the sound track. In particular, one can speak about the song called The Sound of Silence. To a great extent, it greatly helps the film-makers to render the feeling of insecurity that the protagonist tries to overcome. The music and the lyrics are vital understand the behavior of Benjamin Braddock and his interactions with other people.
The subsequent shots include dolly shots taken from various distances. Benjamin Braddock takes his suitcase and leaves the airport. The final scene of this sequence consists of the close-up shot of the protagonist who is sitting on his sofa. Again, Benjamin Braddock looks like a person who does not want to be disturbed by anyone. Additionally, the authors prefer such an editing technique as cut which means that shots instantly replace each another. This technique is important for making a movie more dynamic.
On the whole, the opening credit sequence set the stage for the other events described in the movie. This part of the movie should not be overlooked because it throws some light on the protagonist and his lack of confidence. Certainly, the viewers can learn more about Benjamin Braddock only by watching the entire film. However, the beginning of this movie is very informative. Additionally, this sequence can throw some light on the cinematographic techniques used by the writer. These are the main aspects that can be identified.