This paper will show how the use of cinematic techniques i.e. with the use of mise-en-scène and sound, reflect the relevant era and the kind of life that youths of the 1980s-1990s led. The primary technique that will be discussed in this paper will be on the use of mise-en-scène, and then followed by sounds. That Girl in Pinafore (Pinafore) shall be the main film that we’ll be discussing about.
Pinafore is a story about a group of youths’ dreams, love and friendship, directed by Singaporean filmmaker, Chai Yee-Wei, who has a strong passion for Xinyao (Koh, 2013). The film begins with the main cast studying at the airport in 1992 – a year where Singapore bans chewing gum (Teng & Pwee, 2014) – and this is where the main protagonists, Jiaming…show more content… However, May passed away when she was still in the U.S while giving birth. Eighteen years later, Jiaming, now married, was visiting the columbarium, when he saw a teenage girl visiting May, only to realise that she was the ‘surprise’ that May had mentioned eighteen years ago.
Most of the mise-en-scène are used to help bring the audience back to the 1990s, and to tug the heart strings of the audience with the feeling of nostalgia. Pinafore’s director, Chai Yee-Wei, made use of a budget of S$1 million (Yeo, 2013) to produce this film that was mainly shot in Singapore and the film was accepted by the Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF) (Soh, 2013), and was well-received by the Shanghai audience. As the film starts rolling, the film begins with a bunch of students crowding in the airport studying the night before the ‘O’ level examinations with many textbooks and practice questions being laid around the chairs in…show more content… It was critical in getting the right location as these locations bore the identity of Singapore such that even locals, who are based out of the city, would be able to gain a connection back to their homeland, Singapore. Through the use of mise-en-scène, part of Chai would also be seen in the movie as after Jiaming came back to Singapore from the U.S, he was wearing shirts of University of Michigan which had actually indicated a personification of Chai by Jiaming as Chai have had in actual, graduated from the University of Michigan and similar to Jiaming, Chai mentioned in an interview that he too had a poor command of English which had a negative result in his ‘A’ level examinations (Lui, 2014). As mentioned in the introductory paragraph, with regards to the ban on chewing gums in Singapore in 1992 which had caused controversy back in the 1990s as many could not come to terms with the new ban. The ban had also been briefly referenced in the film during a conversation between Cao Geng and his father which was a short scene when Cao Geng’s father passed a condom