coaches makes it an unquestionable fact that coaches Carter, Boone and
Yoast all fit the classic paradigm of the “good teacher” as defined by
Equally interesting as the storylines and narratives of these good
and heroic coaches is the way in which the filmmakers of these two
films portray them cinematically. While the storyline surrounding a
coach is essential in being able to characterize him as good or heroic,
the subtly strategic ways in which these men are captured by the camera
truly emphasize their power, authority, and importance. Essentially, if
someone were to film either of these movies from a stationary camera
on a tripod wherein every scene was shot the exact same way from the
exact same angle and distance, there would not be anywhere near as
much of an understanding by the audience of the role and significance
of these men. With these coaches, it is absolutely true that production
practices make the man.
One of the cinematic techniques that I noticed being used
within these two films most often is the usage of strategic and well-
thought-out mise-en-scène. Typically, mise-en-scène refers to “the
organization or arrangement of all elements in front of the camera to
be photographed” (Brooklyn College Film Glossary). When discussing
the mise-en-scène of these two films, I am not speaking about the
organization of props or other similar aspects of mise-en-scène but
rather making observations about the placement of the actors
themselves within each scene in relation to the camera. My reasoning
for examining this in particular is that there are multiple ways in which
figures can be portrayed as being more important or more powerful
than the other figures that appear in a scene with them based on their
positioning. First, the natural tendency of our eyes is to look from left-
to-right when we watch a film, and so when something is pictured on
the left of the screen, it is often our natural reaction to look at it first.
This strategy can be seen in Remember the Titans when Coach Boone
stands face to face with a rebellious white player of his who attempts to
stand up to the coach and put himself on level-footing with him. When
the two men are pictured in this scene, there is no height difference
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