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The Best Boardroom and Meeting Scenes in Movies

  • by Darren Walker on February 20, 2015
  • last update on November 06, 2023
  • Reading Time: 4 minutes

Meeting Scenes in Movies

The film awards season in 2015 is about to wrap up this weekend with the biggest awards show of them all — the Oscars. So for this occasion, let’s have a little fun. We asked our staff for their favorite meeting scenes on film, and here’s the list we came up with (in no particular order):

Gung Ho (1986) – “We all speak English.”

This scene from the 1986 movie Gung Ho is the perfect example of what not to do in a board meeting. Here, Michael Keaton’s character, Hunt Stevenson, is delivering a presentation to a Japanese board of directors. He attempts to make jokes to break the ice, but his brand of humor doesn’t fly with his audience. It’s is a lesson in cultural differences, folks. If you’re meeting with foreigners, learn more about their culture so that you’ll find common ground with them. Otherwise, you’ll end up like Stevenson who just fumbles his way through his meeting. Talk about awkward!

The Iron Lady (2011) – “You haven’t got the courage for this fight.”

Meryl Streep won the 2011 Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in The Iron Lady , and it’s easy to see why. She plays Margaret Thatcher, the formidable former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, and in this particular scene, she tells the men she’s meeting with that they don’t have the courage to fight for a cause because they never had to fight hard for anything in their lives — unlike her, who had to work her way to the top because she wasn’t as privileged. It’s a charged scene in which a female leader is fully aware of her power and is not afraid to use it. Women seeking inspiration will find a strong role model in Thatcher, politics aside.

The Sum of All Fears (2002) – “Everyone has opinions, Mr Cabot.”

A meeting isn’t quite complete without an opinionated attendee, so this scene from the 2002 blockbuster thriller The Sum of All Fears definitely delivers. What should be a serious scene takes a darkly humorous turn when DCI William Cabot (played by Morgan Freeman) was interrupted by Senator Jessup. The senator declares that everyone has opinions, then proceeds to share his wife’s opinion of him which is, let’s say, a tad too personal. It’s a classic case of TMI (which stands for ‘too much information,’ in case you aren’t updated on Internet lingo). Here’s a friendly reminder: Don’t share TMI in meetings. Learn what to say and what not to say, and when to move along.

That’s why an effective and clear agenda is needed to prevent steering from the discussion points. Download our guide now and craft an effective board meeting agenda.

Effective Board Meeting Agenda All-in-One Guide

Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997) – “A million dollars isn’t exactly a lot of money these days.”

Now, before anyone says that our favorite meeting scenes are too serious, check out this next clip from the Austin Powers movie. Here, Dr. Evil is trying to figure out a suitable amount for a ransom, but comes up short at his first attempt. His right-hand man bravely speaks up and makes a more reasonable suggestion, which our evil overlord takes too much to heart. It’s a silly scene from a comedy movie, but it does show a good example of how meetings should be about listening to one another and considering each other’s suggestions, even if you happen to be standing on the highest rung of the corporate ladder.

Along Came Polly (2004) – “We cannot sum up a man’s life with a bunch of numbers on a computer screen.”

The late Philip Seymour Hoffman delivers an impassioned speech as Sandy Lyle in this scene from the romantic comedy Along Came Polly . He tries to convince everyone that an otherwise uninsurable man should get insured — and succeeds in doing so, complete with applause and cheers. It just goes to show that a well-delivered argument that touches on both logic and emotions can make people change their minds (and perhaps, bend otherwise rigid rules). If you ever need tips on how to be a persuasive speaker and a convincing presenter, then you’ll learn a lot from this clip.

Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (1997) – “I find your lack of faith disturbing.”

This iconic scene from Star Wars shows what happens if you belittle Darth Vader’s power; Admiral Motti wouldn’t have stood a chance had Governor Tarkin not intervened. James Earl Jones as the voice of Darth Vader utters a line that has become one of the most-well known quotes from the world’s greatest movie franchise.

If there’s anything we can learn from this scene, it’s to not dismiss anyone’s ideas in a meeting so quickly and easily. Although you’re not likely to come across a Darth Vader in the corporate world (or so we hope), you never know when someone has good ideas until you actually give the time to listen.

The Hudsucker Proxy (1994) – “In short, we’re loaded.”

If you’re a chairman of a company, what would you do after hearing that you’ve had a very profitable year according to fiscal reports? You’ll probably buy a yacht, book a trip to the Bahamas, roll the dice in Vegas, or buy some islands in the tropics. But that’s not what Mr. Hudsucker had in mind in The Hudsucker Proxy . The good old sir decides to quit right then and there, and he does so in a spectacular manner that we never ever recommend anyone to do in real life. It works only in the movies.

Robocop (1987) – “It gives me great pleasure to introduce you to the future of law enforcement.”

We don’t need to worry yet about robots in the boardroom, but don’t be surprised if the time comes sooner than you think. Lucky for us, Robocop has already given us a clear warning on what can happen if we bring in beta versions of weaponised robots in an enclosed room filled with people. Hopefully, our older selves — and our ancestors as well — will remember this scene for its lesson, and not just for its rather primitive CGI.

Margin Call (2011) – “I’m telling you, this is it!”

John Tuld, CEO and Chairman of the Board, schools everyone — from the young executives to seasoned C-suite managers — in this scene from Margin Call . Jeremy Irons is at his best as an intimidating and razor-sharp business leader. He doesn’t give you a warm fuzzy feeling, but he’s straight to the point and clear about what he expects from the people around him. His motives in the movie may be less than noble, but he does embody the characteristics of a powerful leader. Watch and learn.

These meeting scenes are our personal choices, so we’d like to hear what your favorites are! One thing we’ve always wondered is how would have these boardroom scenes played out if they were using a software such as a board portal . It maybe might have even significantly altered the course of the movie.

A Comprehensive Guide to Board Portals

To learn more about anything related to boardrooms, business leaders, and corporate governance, visit our articles and insights page.

Darren Walker

Darren is the Content Director at Convene. Driven by his passion for content writing and knowledge of digitalization, he takes pride in providing content that helps drive digital transformation. Over the years, he has written blogs related to digital meetings, board management, and modern governance.

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Using Movie Scenes for Work Training: 3 Things to Keep in Mind

By Becky Pike Pluth 14 June 2017

When you consider that 87% of work training materials are forgotten 30 days after a presentation, per a Corporate Executive Board study, it’s easy to see we could be doing a better job engaging our audiences.

One sure way to boost a presentation’s value is through anecdotal examples, like scenes from TV shows or movies. Movie scenes do more than entertain your audience.  They can help reinforce key messages by driving engagement, learning and retention levels.

But you can’t simply select a scene and hope your audience receives the message you’re trying to deliver. To gain maximum results from your movie-scene investments, here are a few things to take into consideration before, during and after you use video scenes in your presentation:

Before you Search for a Scene

Determine the message you need a scene to convey before you search for it.  Is your work training about helping employees navigate change within the organization?  Are you helping managers learn how to deliver critical messages?  Are you simply trying to motivate your staff?

When you go into the search with a message in mind, you’ll be more likely to find something relevant, as opposed to looking at a scene and trying to find a connection or way to make it work. Think also about the questions you want to ask, so you know when you find a scene if it gets to those questions.

  • Is there a certain character you need to analyze?
  • Is the scene being used as an example of what not to do?

Understanding your audience demographics will also determine the movie scenes you select. Consider the film’s rating, language and content. You want to make sure the content you select is appropriate for everyone involved.

Related Reading: Getting Permission to Use Video Content at Work

During the P resentation : From Movie Watching to Movie Learning

At home, we watch movies for entertainment, or to relax. One challenge of using movie scenes in a work environment is to make sure the audience is watching to learn .

To make sure people watch diligently, assign tasks that reinforce the main message throughout the movie. Here are a few ways you can do this:

  • Have half of the room analyze one character, while the other half of the room studies  another.
  • Have questions posed for the learners to take notes on during the scene. They can then discuss them later with the group.
  • Use polling – clicker questions. This ensures full classroom participation, and audiences will appreciate the anonymity in their selections. It also is a great technique for assessing learners’ basic understanding of the core concepts in the scene.

After the presentation 

After you’ve shown the movie scene, maximize retention with follow-up activities that complement its messaging.

Here are a few ways to keep the audience thinking about what they just saw afterwards:

  • Dig into the deep questions. “How” questions get to the application piece of the scene, which is when people will start to relate the scene to their own work. (Examples could include, “As you watch that scene, how will you apply this to yourself?  How would you react to what happened in the scene?”)
  • Create character webs or charts
  • Role-play using pieces of the movie script
  • Write alternative endings to the scene
  • Debate over a controversial topic in the movie

Learn more about how to lawfully use movie scenes with CCC’s Motion Picture License .

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Visual presentation inspiration from movie title sequences

  • Written by: David Talavera
  • Categories: PowerPoint design , PowerPoint animation

presentation movie scene

As a presentation designer, I am constantly on the lookout for inspiration and new ways of thinking visually. A good presentation should certainly be many things, chief among them: eye-catching, and compelling. One way we can achieve this is with interesting graphics and visuals. The right visuals actually add to what you’re trying to say and help the viewer enjoy, and understand the narrative rather than merely sit through it.

One of my favourite forms of ‘presentation’ is movies; specifically the title credits of a movie. Title credits serve to set up the audience for what is about to come in the film, and sometimes even reflect the plot of the story. Clever use of typography, photography, sound, collage and countless other methods have been used in the past to open up a film.

Just like movies, presentations have to have powerful openings too – in fact we think this is so important, we regularly give a masterclass on how to do it well . There are lots of lessons we can learn from great movie title sequences in creating great presentation openings, and there’s no better master of the art than Mr. Saul Bass . In this post I’d like to take a look at the hugely important role Saul Bass played in the development of the movie title sequence as an art form, and how he used this presentation method to wrap the audience’s mind around a film before it even began. I’ll outline how and why his design style inspired not only me but an entire generation of graphic designers and filmmakers.

Who is Saul Bass?

Saul Bass was an American graphic designer and movie producer/director, born in New York in 1920. His graphic design style was heavily influenced by Swiss Typography along with De Stijl, (and particularly the work of Piet Mondrian), Russian Constructivism ( specifically Kandinsky) and the Bauhaus movement, all of which were based on a design ethic of bold colours, simple geometric shapes and form, silhouettes and efficiency.

DeStijl

The early years of the movie title sequence

The opening credits or titles of a movie, traditionally looked and acted very differently before Saul Bass introduced his style. Initially, they mainly consisted of simple black and white chalk boards listing the cast and crew. These were sometimes accompanied by static background imagery and illustrations. There were no animations, and no real thought given to the idea of setting up the premise of a film.

Below are examples of what title credits looked like in the 1920’s 30’s and early 40’s, predominantly from ‘silent’ movies, and a screenshot sequence taken from the silent movie star Buster Keaton’s movie: ‘The Boat’.

Early Screens

This quote sums up Saul Bass’s approach to the Movie title sequence:

‘‘For the average audience, the credits tell them there’s only three minutes left to eat popcorn. I take this ‘dead’ period and try to do more than simply get rid of names that filmgoers aren’t interested in. I aim to set up the audience for what’s coming; make them expectant ’’

Today the title sequence is equal to that of a TV commercial or a music video in terms of scope and scale. To illustrate this point, let’s look at the work of two notable directors with whom Bass collaborated.

Alfred Hitchcock

Alfred Hitchcock was a master of suspense and the psychological thriller genre; arguably one of the most iconic directors of all time. Hitchcock’s M.O. in terms of ‘presenting’ to an audience-was always abstract form and imagery – which is probably why he worked so well alongside Saul Bass. A presentation can really benefit from strong, bold colours and – particularly – photography. Adding a flood fill photograph into the background of a slide can really give it that wow factor – it brings a presentation to life. Bass used these little tricks to great effect in his sequences for Hitchcock, blending film and still photography together seamlessly.

Vertigo (1958)

The first title sequence here, is that of Vertigo : a dream-like thriller set in San Francisco, about a private detective who falls for a beautiful, suicidal woman whom he is hired to trail. In this sequence the shapes in the titles relate to the human eye and the workings of the inner mind. The hypnotic spirals create a dizzying sensation, representing the main characters’ loss of control, and subsequent vertigo later in the film.

Vertigo

Psycho (1961)

The next sequence is from Psycho – maybe Bass’ most famous title sequence. The film is about a schizophrenic- killer with a split personality, who dresses in the guise of his mother, in order to lure young women into his motel. In this sequence the narrative is reflected by the grey horizontal and vertical lines shooting across the screen, which become jagged and juxtaposed – a nod to the confusion associated to the title character Norman Bates’s split personality, and schizophrenic mind-set.

Psycho

Scorsese has filmed some of the most iconic movies of the last four decades, and is famous for his tough, gritty crime dramas and thrillers. For Scorsese’s title sequences, Bass used bold typography, imagery, and sound.

Goodfellas (1990)

The 1990 Italian-American gangster biopic Goodfellas is a film about the violent, turbulent life of three members of the mafia across two generations. In this title sequence, the narrative is reflected by a simple black background with white upper case credits hurtling across the screen at a rapid rate. The titles are short, sharp and frantic – which reflects the dangerous and glamorous gangster lifestyle that the characters are involved in. The red of the title symbolises the violence and death associated with life in the mafia.

GoodFellas

Casino (1995)

Casino focuses again on the Mafia, but this time its association with gambling and specifically the glitzy casinos of Las Vegas. Bass here shows his expressionistic influences using strong, bold colours. The narrative is reflected through photography and computer animation. It shows the main character – Robert De Niro’s ‘Ace Rothstein’ – being blown up by a car bomb, hurtling through a vivid fireball, which hints at the ideas of Hell and danger. This then blends into the vibrant lights of the Las Vegas strip, reflecting the energetic, glamorous lifestyle of De Niro’s character.

Casino

Bass’ Legacy

Bass’s work has a huge influence on modern design and indeed movie title sequence. Here are two of my favourite examples of modern day title sequences that have been heavily influenced by Bass and how he used the sequence to reflect the narrative of the film.

Catch Me If You Can (2002)

Catch Me If You Can is a crime caper directed by Steven Spielberg, about an FBI detective pursuing a con artist across the world. The sequence uses very bold colours, and simple imagery, much like Bass’ work. It depicts the detective chasing the suspect across the globe in various locations.

CatchMe

Se7en (1995)

The final sequence is from David Fincher’s psychological thriller Se7en , about a two police officers hunting a sadistic serial killer who murders his victims through the use of the seven deadly sins. The narrative is reflected in these titles through the use of jittering photography and montage – showing the killer preparing his demented notebooks. The type and credits animate in a sinister way, magnifying the underlying feeling of discomfort.

Se7en

Bass’ visionary work in title credits not only affected generations of filmmakers, but also generations of designers. From a personal point of view, Saul Bass has been a huge influence on my design and I’ve created several pieces over the years that reflect his approach, including this piece that I created for a Horror festival back in 2007.

Horrorposters1_Blogimages

There is a wealth of knowledge to be mined from these title sequences, particularly in relation to presentations and how we set up our audience. Without the exploits of innovators like Bass, the art of presentation would not be what it is today. If you want some inspiration for your next visual presentation, check out the work of Mr. Bass himself. Oh, and you now have an excuse to re-watch all your favourite movies!

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David Talavera

Managing design consultant, related articles, sensational slide transitions in powerpoint: epic title slide transition.

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Create a stunning title slide sure to impress even the harshest critic by following this easy PowerPoint tutorial from one of our expert designers.

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115 PowerPoint Christmas cards to download and share!

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It's Christmas! After a late night with too much eggnog and brandy snaps we set ourselves a challenge to see who could come up with the wildest PowerPoint Christmas card! So it's the day after the night before, and through blurry eyes we can reveal our efforts...

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How to create PowerPoint templates that work

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What are movies presentation templates.

Movies Presentation templates are the best presentation tool designed with visually attractive background themes to create a presentation on different movie topics. These templates are the perfect layouts to display the movie title, picture, and descriptions.

How can I make a Movie PowerPoint Template for a presentation?

All PowerPoint designers will find it simple to create new PowerPoint slides in a matter of seconds. If you are new to PowerPoint design, consider adopting ready-to-use templates to save time. More design ideas can be found on our PowerPoint tips and tricks pages.

Who can use Movie Presentation Templates?

All movie directors, story writers, movie producers, and scriptwriters can use these movie presentation templates. These templates will reduce the burden of designing work. Also, you can save more time when you choose these pre-designed layouts.

Where can I find free presentation templates?

The work might look more straightforward as you get more free presentation templates from different websites. In addition, you might also face some challenges regarding template design, color, themes, and backgrounds. So, choosing the best PowerPoint website, like Slide Egg, is always better.

Why do we need to use Movie Presentation slides?

These creative movie theme templates are excellent options for displaying movie descriptions. Also, these templates will help you from designing a new template for this work. So it's better to choose and use our ready-to-use templates for your work.

25+ Top Movie Powerpoint Templates (2023)

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Author Victoria Fimmer

  • Author: Victoria Fimmer

Film projects require a creative approach. Here is where a movie PowerPoint template comes in handy. It is no wonder that a dull and boring presentation of a movie won’t seem to be the right solution. Instead, consider using a movie PowerPoint template that features a bright design and an interesting visual concept. It will definitely make your project shine with new colors. Meanwhile, your audience will stay focused on your content till the end of your presentation. Once you choose a template, you will need to adjust it to your project needs and your personal preferences. You may add flowcharts, diagrams, maps, and many more elements that suit the content. This will enhance your interaction with the audience while discussing cinematography and acting.

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This movie theater PowerPoint template has amazing, bright neon colors and a unique variety of emoji symbols that you can use with the 20 slides available.

Harry Potter Halloween PowerPoint Template

Collage of presentation pages with photos from the world of Harry Potter.

For the true lovers of Harry Potter, use this film PowerPoint template to create an eye-catching presentation. With easily editable slides, you can create a powerful presentation solely based on your favorite characters or movie scenes.

Movie PowerPoint Templates Bundles

Collage of presentation pages with frames from black and white films.

Movie presentation templates that come in bundles are a great deal for you if you need to create a few presentations. This bundle includes slide templates for a variety of movie genres and styles.

Twist – Movie Studio PowerPoint Template

Collage of presentation pages with frames from the film and images of mobile devices.

A perfect way to organize a chaotic studio is a movie studio template that includes all the features you will need to discuss your goals and ideas regarding the movie and organize a work plan.

Basyar – Movie Studio PowerPoint

-------.

Are you planning to start a big movie project? We have a great way for you to present the timelines, policies, filming guidelines, rules, and crew member responsibilities to actors or other professionals involved in the filming process. This will allow you to guide them through the process and keep everyone on the same page.

Collage of presentation pages with photos of viewers in the cinema hall.

This sophisticated movie-themed PowerPoint has 20 fully editable slides with four beautiful color choices. It’s a wonderful way to project your movie atmosphere, gallery, team, what to expect, and possible future projects.

Movie Background PowerPoint Template

Collage of presentation pages with photos of viewers in the cinema hall and a beige background.

A movie director can use a movie PowerPoint background template to present his unique vision and idea. It’s a great way to talk about how a movie concept was brought to life, what criteria the casting directors used to cast actors, the overall research and filming process, the movie rating, and more.

Horror Movie PowerPoint Template

Collage of presentation pages with frames from horror films.

This spooky horror movie PowerPoint template has some very cool graphics and images, it’s a fun way to present a horror movie, and details involving how it was made.

Mafre – Movie Production PowerPoint

Collage of presentation pages with film frames and black and orange background.

This Mafre PowerPoint movie background has a modern, elegant, and unique layout. Its slide variety is amazing, and the unique mockups are really attention-catching.

Twist – Movie Studio PowerPoint

Collage of presentation pages with photos from the shoot, gray background and bright accents.

Film PowerPoint templates like this Twist design are one of the most popular ways to present a movie in a catchy way. With this template, you can get into all the details while keeping the audience’s attention and interest.

Fatea: Cinema and Theater Business Keynote

Collage of presentation pages with orange, purple, pink backgrounds and large infographics.

With 60 slides in total, this cinema and theater presentation offers 2 options of color theme variations, fully editable text, various icons, and unique picture placeholders.

Movie Background Presentation

Collage of presentation pages with beige background and images of movie tickets, popcorn and auditorium.

Showcase your work to movie fans, cinemas, or distributors with this cool presentation template. The design of the template is all about the film industry, with beautiful, colorful illustrations and icons.

Movie Studio and Film Maker PowerPoint

Collage of presentation pages with a black background and bright light green inserts.

A very versatile presentation template that can be used by filmmakers, agencies, and movie lovers. It has an elegant yet creative design that contains some of the best graphics and picture placeholders.

Cinema and PopCorn Presentation

Collage of presentation pages with drawn movie props.

This presentation template features 35 modern slides with thematic icons and resources that will catch the audience’s attention while you speak about film history, your favorite cinemas, or film producers.

Morua: Cinema Business Google Slides Template

Collage of presentation pages with photos of cinema hall, actresses on brown and white background.

A cinema business template will save you a lot of time, meaning you can spend your time working on the content of your presentation. Professional designers already did all the hard creative work on the presentation for you. You can now solely focus on delivering the right message about your movie to the audience.

Twilight Zone Day Template

Twilight zone day template.

This template is based on the popular TV show The Twilight Zone . The series is mostly about various horrors, solving mystery. Buy it to make a reference to the series with thematic slides.

Series – Movie PowerPoint Presentation Template

Series - movie powerpoint presentation template.

This series template has a stunning design that brings on a creative and unique feel. With 30+ slides, it is completely editable and flexible to fit any topic. It has many space holders for your text and illustrations. By using a ready-made template, you’ll have more time to work on the presentation’s content, describing a movie or a series.

Cinema Minitheme Template

Cinema minitheme template.

With this retro template, you can create an interesting demonstration explaining the process of filming, editing, and publishing a movie. The pre-made slides included have a 90s American style and are full of resources to make an even more interesting visual.

Film Maker PowerPoint Template

Film maker powerpoint template.

With a flat and minimalist design, you can be sure your presentation will stand out. The clean, simple, and minimalist design concept is super high-quality and has some impressive animations and transactions.

Red Bridge – Cinema PowerPoint Template

Red bridge - cinema powerpoint template.

This cinema PowerPoint template was created with the concept to level up a standard presentation and make it more interesting, professional, and easy to understand. With two layouts (light & dark), you get 30 slides with a simple, neat, and clean design.

Movie Award PowerPoint Template

Movie award powerpoint template.

A movie award event is a serious and exciting time for many producers, actors, and crew members who worked on this project. You can use this movie award template to mention these members in an appreciated and glorious way.

Best Free Movie PowerPoint Templates

Free theater curtain powerpoint template.

Theater curtain powerpoint template.

This free PowerPoint template with purple color curtains gives an unique look to the presentation design. This template serves well for topics like movies or theater or you can use it to present any other creative project as well.

Films and Cinema – Free PowerPoint Template

Films and cinema - powerpoint template.

The films and cinema template has a rustic, 90s design which is associated with old black-and-white movies. It’s a great way to introduce a historic movie type and fit the vibe of the old cinemas.

Free Cinema PowerPoint Template

Cinema powerpoint template.

You can use this movie PowerPoint template free design for video editing, publicity around the film, and promotions in the film production business.

Film Producing PowerPoint Template

Film producing powerpoint template.

A film-producing PowerPoint presentation is a popular way to organize a film studio that is in the process of major scenes and filming. A presentation will include all deadlines, timelines, break times, scene time, and crew-duty schedules.

Movies TV PowerPoint Templates

Movies TV powerpoint templates.

Free Movies TV PowerPoint Template is one of the latest and most modern PowerPoint designs. You can use it to create presentations about cinematography, the editing techniques used in a movie, film publicity, and promotions.

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Some Awesome Video About Vintage Fonts

Vintage + retro aesthetic fonts for editing.

In todays video, you will see top vintage + retro aesthetic fonts. These are free retro aesthetic fonts and vintage aesthetic fonts on dafont. -->

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How to make animated videos in minutes, start a free 7-day trial of biteable., pick an animated video template or build your own with pre-made animated scenes., customize your video: add or remove scenes , include animated text, upload your own pictures and video clips. you can even add a voice over, download your masterpiece or share it far and wide with a single,  trackable link ., a video presentation maker that rises above the rest, on-point templates.

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If you can make a PowerPoint, you can make a video presentation with Biteable.

Choose from a full library of brandable templates and scenes, all designed with a professional audience in mind. Build out your video presentation with animated text, characters, and icons — all with the click of a button. Polish it off with a premium music track.

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Your answers to the most frequently asked questions about making a video presentation.

How do I make a video presentation for free?

It’s hard to make a video presentation for free, because free video makers have limited features that usually aren’t geared toward professional presentations. Your best bet is making a presentation during a free trial with a leading video presentation maker. Most people quickly realize purchasing a subscription is worth the money.

How do I make a video out of a presentation?

Not all online video makers are geared toward making a video out of a presentation, so it’s important to use one that focuses on making videos for a professional setting. Look for features like: templates and scenes geared toward the business world; video branding capabilities; an easy-to-use workflow.

How do I make a narration video presentation?

There are three ways to make a narration video presentation.

  • Record narration separately and sync it to your presentation.
  • Upload first-person video footage. Merge it with your presentation.
  • Use a video presentation maker with in-app voice-over and recording features. (This is the easiest way to make a narration video presentation.)

How do I make an animated presentation?

Making an animated presentation from scratch is difficult unless you have advanced skills. Your best bet is to find a video presentation maker with a library of animations you can add to your presentation. Look for an online video maker that offers unique animations geared toward a professional setting.

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“Biteable gives us the speed and quality to create videos that allows our 3-person team to play at the level of a 60-person team.”

  • Tara Aiken, Regis Corporation

4 must-have tips for making video presentations

Creating a video presentation is easy with Biteable. And it’s even easier if you follow these best practices.

Have a goal in mind

Every great video presentation starts with a goal. What are you trying to accomplish? Maybe you want to share a new idea with your colleagues. Maybe you want to report on important company metrics. Or maybe you want to do something else entirely.

It’s incredibly difficult to make a video presentation that moves the needle until you define exactly what your presentation aims to achieve. Figure that part out and the rest becomes much easier.

Choose a proven template

Now that you know what your presentation aims to achieve you can pick a template that fits. You can create your video presentation from scratch, but using a template as a starting point gives you guide rails for tempo and pacing, plus a proven structure designed by pros.

Biteable video presentation maker has plenty of template options geared toward a professional setting, plus hundreds of extra video scenes and animations to build out your video presentation as much or as little as you like.

Use animations that underscore your message

One of the biggest advantages of video presentations over something static like a PowerPoint is the presence of motion. Without even realizing it, your audience will remember the information better simply because video is a multimedia experience that combines movement, sound, and visuals. To make the most impact, choose your animations wisely and use movement in a way that underscores your key points.

Are you presenting on the massive growth your marketing team achieved? Use a graph showing upward movement to drive the point home. Do you have one key point you’re trying to make? Use animation to circle your text or arrows that point at your most important information.

(All of this is easy to do with the video scenes available in Biteable.)

Keep it short and sweet

The length of your video presentation matters. Too short and you won’t be able to convey enough information. Too long and your audience will tune out.

There’s no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to video presentation length. But in general, 1-2 minutes is the sweet spot for making a video presentation that holds attention while still getting all the important information across.

You’d be surprised how many details you can share in this amount of time. A 15-minute live presentation can easily be condensed into one or two minutes if you hone your message to focus on the key details.

Brand your video

This is probably one of the most important — and most overlooked — parts of creating a successful video presentation. You’d never create a PowerPoint with erratic, off-brand colors. Making a video presentation is no different.

It’s a subtle change, but it gives off a big signal that you are polished and professional, and that you and your video presentation mean business.

Take advantage of the unique branding feature in the Biteable video presentation maker to easily apply your colors and logo to your entire presentation.

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  • Presentation Hacks

Using Silence in a Presentation like a Scene from a Movie

  • By: Stephanie Fulton

Silence. Some people are scared of it, some people are comforted by it. Either way, it’s an impactful tool in our lives that we can take for granted. A good example of this is in movies. The online series Every Frame a Painting highlights how effective silence is in creating dramatic and intense moments on screen.

The video examines how film uses silences in a powerful way, but also looks at examples of when silence is not used at all. Movies are increasingly filling every moment with sound or music, when silence can amplify a scene even more so. Long scenes with lots of loud noise will make every sound blur together and nothing will stand out. Timing plays a major role in when and how to use silence. The best way to figure out when to use it is to look for specific moments where silence can build to a climax or reveal a character.

Research has also shown that silence can help the brain produce more cells in the hippocampus, the part of the brain that is associated with memory, emotion and learning. Silence also helps with relaxation and expanding attention spans.

Read More: The Impact of the Silent Presenter

These moments can be created in your own presentation. By sticking to the same rules applied to film, you can use silence in a presentation for the same memorable effect.

presentation movie scene

Be Deliberate

One of the main takeaways I got from this video is to be deliberate with silence. Plan and prepare for where you can use silence in your presentation. This will help you avoid an awkward moment. When you can find the perfect spot to use silence, it can be effective and impactful for your presentation.

Create a moment for your silence. Like the video explains, silence is a central dramatic beat of a scene. So if you are delivering a passionate and emotional story, or using a piece of video to drive home a point, it’s better to end that moment with silence rather than continuing right along with your presentation.

Don’t Misuse or Overuse Silence

Too much silence can make your presentation ineffective or make you appear unprepared. And silence in the wrong places will make your audience uncomfortable. It’s important to practice your presentation with and without the silence in front of friends or colleagues to see if it will work. If the timing is not just right, the silence will not have the impact that you wish for.

Just like directors plan for the best moments to let silence amplify a scene, presenters can do the same thing for their presentation. Silence when done right will leave a lasting impression on your audience. It’s important to look at your overall speech and plan for the opportunity. But don’t overuse this tool and create a cringe-worthy moment. Learn more about this tool by taking a look at our previous blogs on how to best use silence in a presentation.

The Science of Silence

5 Killer Ways to Start Your Next Presentation

What’s the Best Way to Open A Presentation [Video]

Stephanie Fulton

Stephanie Fulton

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How to Analyze a Scene in a Film

Last Updated: October 6, 2023 Approved

This article was co-authored by Gavin Anstey and by wikiHow staff writer, Hunter Rising . Gavin Anstey is the COO at Cinebody. Cinebody is User-Directed Content software that empowers brands to create instant, authentic, and engaging video content with anyone on earth. Gavin studied Journalism at the University of Colorado Boulder, before launching a career in video production and software. There are 10 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article has 11 testimonials from our readers, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 330,712 times.

While you can analyze an entire film , you can also choose a scene from the movie and break it down even further. Before you choose a scene you want to analyze, watch the entire film first so you can understand what’s happening. Go over the scene you want to analyze multiple times so you can pick out the details and take notes on it. Once you have your notes, you can write a formal analysis essay about the scene.

Choosing and Watching the Scene

Step 1 Watch the entire film without any distractions to understand the theme.

  • For example, if you choose to watch the movie To Kill a Mockingbird , you may say the overlying theme is the balance of good and evil or how prejudice can affect a town.

Tip: The film may have multiple themes, so choose one that interests you to focus on and use it to apply to the scene you choose later.

Step 2 Go through the film again to find a scene you want to analyze.

  • For example, if you want to analyze Jaws , you may choose the opening scene to see how music and cinematography affect the mood.
  • Analyzing scenes that are just conversations between characters can be just as fun as focusing on a big action scene. With quieter scenes, you can discuss how the camera angles and dialog affect how someone interprets the conversations.

Step 3 Replay the scene multiple times to focus on what’s happening on screen.

  • Avoid taking any notes the first couple times you watch the scene so you can absorb as much of it as you can. After 2-3 viewings, you can start pausing the scene or writing down things you notice.

Analyzing Elements within the Scene

Step 1 Summarize the main actions occurring in the scene.

  • For example, the events of the opening scene in Jaws are teenagers partying on a beach, two of the people leaving the group, one of them swimming in the water, and then getting grabbed by the shark.

Gavin Anstey

Gavin Anstey

What are the main elements of a scene? Gavin Anstey, a video producer, tells us: "Lighting is always an important element. Is it natural lighting, or artificial? Lighting sets the mood of the scene. Next is the talent if they are in the scene. How good is the talent? The majority of communication isn't verbal language, it's body language . How does the talent evoke a feeling or emotion without saying anything? Finally, does the talent sound real and authentic ? Or do they sound cheesy ?"

Step 2 Determine how the scene fits in with the story of the film.

  • For example, the opening scene in Jaws introduces the shark to the viewer and shows that it’s a threat to humans in the water. Throughout the film, this sets up conflict since it takes place in a beach town.

Step 3 Watch the characters...

  • For example, in the shark attack scene from Jaws , you may notice the kids in the water having fun, but Chief Brody is tense and worried about everyone’s safety.

Tip: Pay attention to the characters’ costumes since they could give hints about the character’s intentions. For example, if the character is wearing dark clothes, they may be evil or they could be planning something sinister.

Step 4 See if there’s any symbolism in the scene.

  • For example, in the final scene of Inception , the spinning top is a symbol of uncertainty since the viewer isn’t sure whether the ending is real or a dream.
  • Another example is the letter “X” or an X-shape in a scene of the film The Departed , which represents death.
  • Even characters can be symbols. For example, the Joker in The Dark Knight can be a symbol of chaos or uncertainty.
  • Not every scene will have specific symbols that relate to the rest of the film, so don’t worry about if you can’t find any.

Step 5 Look at the framing of the scene to how it’s composed.

  • For example, if a character is standing and looking down at another character that’s sitting down, it could mean the standing character is more important or powerful than the other.
  • If you’re watching the film on a computer, take screenshots from the scene so you can analyze the still frames.
  • Look at how the scene’s lit and how the highlights and shadows affect the mood. Shots that are framed dark can make the scene mysterious but well let scenes may seem like a comfortable or exposed location. [7] X Research source

Step 6 Watch the camera angle and movement to see how they change the feeling of the scene.

  • For example, action scenes usually have a lot of movement and have multiple angles to keep the viewer excited. Conversely, horror scenes may have no camera movement and close-up shots to make a viewer feel tense while they’re watching it.
  • Make note of when shots shift focus from an object or character to another.

Step 7 Notice how the editing from shot to shot conveys a mood.

  • For example, if you have a shot of a desert followed by a shot of a glass of water, it may make you think about being thirsty.
  • In another example, the editing in the opening scene of Jaws makes the viewer tense since they know the shark is getting closer but the woman in water doesn’t know about the danger.

Step 8 Listen to how the sound effects or music affect the mood of the scene.

  • For example, the music at the beginning of Jaws helps to build tension since it keeps getting faster until the shark attacks.
  • Wear headphones and play the scene if you’re able so you’re able to catch all of the discrete noises you may not have been able to hear otherwise.
  • Make note of silences in the scene as well since they can be just as important as loud sounds.

Writing a Scene Analysis

Step 1 Brainstorm a thesis that will be the main point of your analysis.

  • For example, a thesis for the opening scene in Jaws may be, “The opening shark attack from Jaws uses accelerating music, quick editing, and point of view shots to create tension.”

Step 2 State the film, director, and thesis you’re writing about in your introduction.

  • Keep your introduction about 3-4 sentences long.

Step 3 Summarize the scene and how it relates to the rest of the film.

  • Keep the summary paragraph about 4-5 sentences long before moving on.

Step 4 Include at least 2-3 paragraphs about what you analyzed for the body of your paper.

  • For example, if you’re talking about the opening scene in Jaws , your body paragraphs may discuss the music, the editing, and the point of view of the camera angles.
  • Don’t use all of your notes you took from the scene since they won’t all fit with the thesis for your paper.

Step 5 Conclude your paper by restating your thesis and main points of your essay.

  • For example, you may end an analysis on the opening scene of Jaws by discussing how the opening scene of the film influenced the horror genre.

Community Q&A

Community Answer

  • Research what was happening in the world when the film was released to see if you can apply the events to the scene or theme of the movie. Thanks Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0
  • Once you analyze the scene you picked, look up the scene or film online to see what others were able to discuss about it. You may be able to notice things that you hadn’t considered before. Thanks Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0

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Analyze a Movie

  • ↑ https://penandthepad.com/write-scene-analysis-8560037.html
  • ↑ https://youtu.be/zogJ6isyK1k?t=189
  • ↑ https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED096715.pdf
  • ↑ http://filmanalysis.yale.edu/cinematography/#framing
  • ↑ http://filmanalysis.yale.edu/mise-en-scene/#lighting
  • ↑ http://filmanalysis.yale.edu/cinematography/#quality
  • ↑ http://filmanalysis.yale.edu/editing/#devices
  • ↑ http://filmanalysis.yale.edu/sound/
  • ↑ https://writingcenter.unc.edu/tips-and-tools/film-analysis/
  • ↑ https://www.raindance.org/tell-me-everything-about-it-how-to-write-a-film-analysis-essay-correctly/

About This Article

Gavin Anstey

To analyze a scene in a film, begin by watching the scene several times while taking notes on the director’s choices, from camera angles to character casting. Next, form a hypothesis about the scene based on your notes, like how the director’s choice of camera angles affects the point of view. Once you have a strong argument formulated, incorporate it into an introductory paragraph that includes the movie title, director, and the date it was released. Follow it with at least 3 paragraphs supporting your hypothesis, then tie it all together in your conclusion paragraph. For more examples of scene elements to include in your analysis, read on! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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The 30 Best Movie Inspirational Speeches

Cinema's most stirring oratories and spirit-raising team talks.

Gladiator

In times of trouble, you need a little help getting up and going, and film can often provide just that. Cinema has a long and storied history of providing great words of motivation and encouragement, sometimes for the characters' own benefit and occasionally to the audience. Here, we've chosen 30 of the best that should fit almost any occasion - but if you're really pressed for time, here are 40 condensed into a two-minute span { =nofollow}. If you have a little longer, read on!

Also: The 25 Best Movie Bollockings

The Great Dictator

Made at a time when the shadow of World War II was looming over Europe, Charlie Chaplin’s speech here – he’s playing a poor Jewish barber in disguise as a preening dictator and forced to address a Nuremberg-style rally – is a heartfelt plea for sanity and compassion in a time of madness. It’s the perfect antidote to extremism, and uses fiery rhetoric for good. If only we’d be able to pull this switcheroo in real life.

Buy The Great Dictator

Independence Day

Sure, there are cheesemongers with less cheese on offer than you see here and OK, the American jingoism doesn’t work at all for those of us not of a Yank disposition. But Bill Pullman’s slightly sheepish style blends here with steely determination, and he delivers the American St Crispin’s Day speech with conviction. Then, like any US President, he leaps into his fighter jet and flies off to battle aliens.

Buy Independence Day

For those who prefer a little humour in their motivational speeches, try the pitch-black streak in this opener, establishing Russell Crowe’s Maximus Decimus Meridius as a leader of men and a helluva guy. Galloping around the Legions in his cool armour and fur-lined cloak, you might question whether he really needs an entire army to back him up, but you’ll never doubt for a moment that they’d choose to follow him as he unleashes hell.

Buy Gladiator

Any Given Sunday

There’s a lot to be said for a little personal touch to leaven your high-flung rhetoric, and it’s a trick that Al Pacino uses well here, in the first of three American football speeches we’re going to include (hey, we can’t help it if the heavily-padded sport produces some great pep talks). Pacino’s troubled Tony D’Amato unveils his own problems with brutal honesty before using his own failures as a spur to rev on his team to greatness, speaking of team spirit and commitment as someone who has been known to suck at both.

Buy Any Given Sunday

Friday Night Lights

The film has been somewhat overshadowed nowadays by the equally good TV show that followed it, but watch Billy Bob Thornton here and be reminded that Kyle Chandler isn’t the only fundamentally decent man who can inspire a team of small-town boys to great efforts in pursuit of perfection. It’s also worth noting that he puts his emphasis here on excelling and not winning, making it clear that victory isn’t only measured by the scoreboard. Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose.

Buy Friday Night Lights

It is, and will probably always be, the greatest inspirational speech ever made. It’s endlessly flexible, and works even when not declaimed by the classically trained (see this Renaissance Man version for proof). And it’s by Shakespeare, still the best writer in Hollywood. We have, controversially perhaps, chosen Branagh’s version over Olivier’s because the latter sounds a little shrill to the modern ear, while Branagh convinces us that he could convince his men. This speech, given by the titular monarch to a vastly outnumbered force about to fight the French, obviously works especially well for English people, but by God, Harry and St George, it’s universal in its rousing effect.

Buy Henry V

This is a little-known film in the UK but it’s revered in certain communities in the US. Sean Astin’s Rudy has overcome dyslexia, poor grades and his relatively small stature to win a place on Notre Dame’s famous Fighting Irish American football team. Only problem is that he’s never been off the bench, and with his final game approaching he threatens to quit the team if he isn’t allowed to play – prompting this inspirational speech / telling off from a friend who points out that he’s being whiny and entitled and needs to grow a pair. Soon he’s back on the bench and given a starting position when his entire team threatens not to play unless he’s given a shot.

An honourable mention for Hector’s pep talk but Achilles wins the battle of the inspirational speeches just as he wins their duel (c’mon, that’s not a spoiler; it’s in the 2000 year-old Iliad). This is a short snippet, but then godlike Achilles, the man-killer, is a man of action rather than words. And what he does say – focusing on lions, glory and the manifold abilities of his small, hand-picked group of Myrmidons – would convince a rock to fight any Trojan who dared oppose it.

Animal House

Not every inspirational speech is about trying to inspire his cohorts to kill people or batter them up and down the length of a football field. Some aspire to a higher goal. Some aspire to debauchery, drinking and probably nudity. Some aspire to party like 1999 might have done had it tried harder. Some aspire to a particular kind of grubby, deranged greatness. One such is John Belushi’s Bluto, and this is the greatest night of his life.

Buy Animal House

The Goonies

Come the hour, cometh the man – and in this case the man is a small, asthmatic Sean Astin, inspiring his fellow Goonies to never say die and to keep going in their quest to find treasure and save their community. In his yellow rain slicker and with his voice on the edge of breaking he may not look like a modern Napoleon, but he has the same effect on his exhausted and discouraged troopers. He’s so good you’ll almost forget to laugh at his mentions of One-Eyed Willy. snigger

Buy The Goonies

The Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King

Death comes to us all, and Aragorn ain’t going to lie about it. But he still gees up his troops with the assurance that their civilisation will survive the onslaught of the forces of Mordor. Sure, they’re vastly outnumbered and sure, it seems likely that Frodo has failed in his quest to destroy the Ring in Mount Doom (especially if you’re watching the Extended Edition) but Viggo Mortensen’s Aragorn ensures that no one will be quitting any time soon. Not this day!

Buy The Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King

Bill Murray isn’t usually the guy you turn to for sincere, inspiring words of comfort. He’s more the type to puncture any attempt at same, and probably to fast-talk his opponents into giving up and going for a karaoke session while he’s about it. But after his heart grows two sizes during the course of Scrooged, he makes a plea for kindness and niceness from all mankind. He still does it in a recognisably Murray, manic and scattershot way, but that just makes him all the more compelling. Someone hire this man to play Santa Claus.

Buy Scrooged

Stirring sports speeches are limited to American Football. Miracle On Ice chronicles the based-on-truth tale of how the US Olympic hockey team triumphed over their Russian rivals. Kurt Russell's the speech-giver here, playing coach Herb Brooks. "Tonight, we are the greatest hockey team in the world," he tells them. You'll feel a swell of pride and inspiration too.

Rent Miracle

Deep Blue Sea

“You think water’s fast? You should see ice.” Samuel L. Jackson’s been around the block more than once, and he’s seen the worst of mankind. It’s with the weight of that history behind him that he takes charge and orders his fellow survivors of a marine disaster to start pulling together and quit arguing. His speech also has what is, unquestionably, the greatest punchline on this list. Still, it achieves the desired effect once everyone has quit screaming.

Buy Deep Blue Sea

If in doubt, steal from classical history, something that David Wenham’s Dilios demonstrates with aplomb here. In actual history, the one survivor of the 300 was so shamed by his survival that he executed a suicidal one-man attack on the Persians at this Battle of Plataea, but Wenham seems more in control and also like he has quite a bit of back-up. “The enemy outnumber us a paltry three-to-one,” notes Dilios triumphantly. Why, it was hardly worth the Persians turning up.

Good Will Hunting

Here’s an inspirational speech well-suited to highly-paid sports teams and the enormously talented. Ben Affleck’s argument is, basically, that if you’re lucky enough to get extraordinary chances in your life, it’s your duty to the rest of us schmoes to actually take those chances and run with them as far as you can. If you can get past the shellsuit and the hair, he’s basically Yoda-like in his wisdom.

Buy Good Will Hunting

Most people only remember the last word – “Freedom!” – but the rest of the speech is pretty killer too. Mel Gibson’s William Wallace starts off by puncturing his own legend, and acknowledges the urge to cut and run in the face of a far superior English force. But then he reminds his men what they’d be missing if they do, and soon they’re all back on side and facing down the hated English. By the end of this speech, you’ll all hate the English with them – even if you are one.

Buy Braveheart

Coach Carter

You’d expect the inspiration in this basketball film to come from the titular no-nonsense coach, played by a fiery Samuel L. Jackson. But in fact it’s one of his players who nabs the best lines, as he and the team sit studying to keep their grades as high as their scores. There is a little cheating here: Rick Gonzalez’ Timo actually steals his inspirational speech from Marianne Williamson (it’s sometimes wrongly attributed to Nelson Mandela) but he delivers it well so we’re going to allow it.

Buy Coach Carter

While it’s his skills in the ring that he is most lauded for, Rocky Balboa is something of a poet to boot. An incoherent one, certainly; a poet who says “I guess” a lot more often than Wordsworth might like, but a poet nevertheless. His moving words here, as he single-handedly ends the Cold War and ushers in a new era of East-West relations, are just one example. Another is…

Buy Rocky IV

Rocky Balboa

If his last speech was incoherent – in fairness, his rhythm may have been thrown off by the translator – this one verges on incomprehensible when he really gets going. Still, there’s real passion in Rocky’s plea for one last shot and an argument that’s applicable to all sorts of situations of institutional injustice or unfeeling bureaucracy.

Buy Rocky Balboa

Stand And Deliver

Those who've watched him on the modern Battlestar Galactica know that Edward James Olmos is a past master at giving speeches. This is him from a little earlier in his career, playing Jaime Escalante, a real-life teacher who inspired his students to stop dropping out and start taking calculus seriously. Here, he's handing out as pop quiz, so anyone having to home school their kids can take note.

Rent Stand And Deliver

Good Night, And Good Luck

This one is couched particularly at media moguls, but there’s a call for excellence and the highest moral standards here that we would all do well to live by. David Strathairn’s Edward R. Murrow, in a speech lifted directly from Murrow’s actual address to the Radio and Television News Directors Association in 1958, pleads for TV to inform as well as entertain. We feel that if more people saw this speech, Made In Chelsea would be cancelled immediately and reality TV would be banned, so spread the word!

Buy Good Night, And Good Luck

Anyone who has ever flirted with a romantic interest knows the risk of being knocked back, and Jon Favreau's Mike is experiencing a crisis of confidence. Luckily for him, he has Vince Vaughn's Trent to talk him back into the game, and Alex Désert's Charles to remind him that he's so money. He's a bear! And she's a bunny! Everything is going to be fine.

Buy Swingers

Charles Dutton’s second appearance on this list, after Rudy, sees him once again reminding lesser men (and women) to get with the programme, pull the finger out and generally stand up and be counted. But this time they’re facing unstoppable acid-blooded xenomorphs rather than American football players, so he has to be extra-emphatic.

Buy Alien 3

Pirates Of The Caribbean: At World’s End

Remarkably few women get to deliver inspirational speeches in movies – apparently they’re relegated to clapping admiringly from the sidelines. Thank goodness for Elizabeth Swan (Keira Knightley) who is elected King of the Pirates and rouses her troops into action for a last-ditch fight against the Lord Beckett’s overwhelming forces, led by the Flying Dutchman. She may not have quite the lungs of others on the list, but there’s no doubting her conviction as she calls for them to “Hoist the colours!” – the Jolly Roger – and sail out one last time.

Buy Pirates Of The Caribbean: At World’s End

The Replacements

One doesn’t expect lengthy speeches from Keanu “Woah” Reeves (although he’s done his share of Shakespeare actually) but he’s rarely more succinct and to the point than in this chat with his fellow Replacements. And in fact there are few speeches more likely to be effective in motivating an exhausted team for one last effort. “Chicks dig scars” could be used by virtually every example here to drive on the listeners.

Buy The Replacements

Bill Murray at it again, and once more an unconventional speech. This time out, he's John Winger, a loser who decides that he and best pal Russell Ziskey (Harold Ramis) will join the Army. Stuck with a group of oddballs, and, after a night of partying, decides to rally his fellow troops. It works... Sort of. But Murray's typically laconic style works well for the speech itself.

Rent or buy Stripes

The Lord Of The Rings: Return Of The King

All seems lost for Samwise Gamgee (Sean Astin again) and Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood) as they lie, exhausted, on the slopes of Mount Doom. Frodo’s beyond endurance and raving as the influence of the Ring grows ever stronger on him, and his desperate straits drive Sam to one last push. It’s barely a speech, really – he uses his words better here – but there are few moments more inspirational.

Buy The Lord Of The Rings: Return of The King

The Shawshank Redemption

A quiet moment between Tim Robbins' Andy Dufresne and Morgan Freeman's Red became one of the more memorable moments in Shawshank , a movie with no shortage of them. And for those who are spending more time inside than perhaps they might be used to, Andy's musing on what he would do if he got out of prison are inspirational in themselves, even before he gets to that iconic line.

Rent The Shawshank Redemption

Avengers: Endgame

Steve Rogers, AKA Captain America, is not shy of breaking out speech mode when the moment calls for it. And inspiring the Avengers as they're about to embark on a trip through space and time to retrieve the Infinity Stones certainly seems like that moment. "Whatever it takes," indeed.

Rent Avengers: Endgame

Cinematic Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide to Cinematic Lighting

  • Cinematography

Film Lighting — The Ultimate Guide (w/ Video & Cheatsheet)

  • What Does a Cinematographer Do
  • What is Cinematography
  • What is Digital Cinematography
  • Cinematography Terms
  • What is Motion Blur
  • Basics of Film Lighting: 4 Qualities of Light
  • What is Practical Lighting
  • 3-Point Lighting
  • What is Key Light
  • What is Fill Light
  • What is Backlight
  • What is Low Key Lighting
  • What is High Key Lighting
  • What is Book Lighting
  • When is Golden Hour
  • What is Overexposure
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  • Overexposure vs Underexposure
  • What are Gels in Lighting
  • What is a Klieg Light
  • What is a Softbox
  • DIY Light Diffuser
  • What is a Light Diffuser
  • Quasar Lights
  • What is Tungsten Light
  • What is a Leko Light
  • Ultimate Guide to Film Lighting
  • Production Lighting
  • Film Lighting Techniques
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  • 30 Cinematography Tips
  • Green Screen Lighting
  • Rembrandt Lighting
  • Chiaroscuro Lighting
  • Low Light Photography & Cinematography
  • How to Use False Color
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  • FREE E-Book: Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide

T here wouldn’t be film without film lighting. Lighting is as crucial to cinematic storytelling as a script and a subject, and filmmakers have experimented with different lumination techniques for as long as the medium has existed. In this article, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about lighting for film, from terminology to techniques. Ready to dive into over a hundred years worth of lighting knowledge?

Watch: The Ultimate Guide to Film Lighting (Part One)

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Types of Lighting in Film

Types of light.

Not all types of film lighting are created equally. Light comes in a wide variety of forms, packages and sources. So before you start flipping switches on set, it’s important to know all the options you can work with.

All types of film lighting fall under one of two categories: natural and artificial. Natural light is — you guessed it — light which occurs naturally. This can be illumination coming from the sun, moon, fire, or firefly.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide The Revenant The Revenant makes heavy use of natural light

The Revenant makes heavy use of natural light  •  Film lighting

Artificial light, on the other hand, is man-made. Streetlights, neon lights, flashlights, LED panels — these are all artificial. The lights that a film crew lugs onto set and boots up several generators to power? Those are artificial too.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Avatar James Cameron on the set of Avatar Shape Of Water surrounded by artificial light

James Cameron on the set of Avatar 2, surrounded by artificial light  •  Filmmaking lighting

But artificial and natural aren’t the only categories which lights can be divided into. For example, there’s also ambient light , which refers to any light on set which the crew didn’t bring.

Ambient light can be either artificial or natural. If you’re shooting in a bar, ambient light may be coming from a buzzing “open” sign. If you’re shooting on the side of the road, passing cars’ headlights would be ambient. Of course, if you’re shooting outside during the day, you’re going to have to deal with the most powerful ambient light of all: the sun.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Chungking Express Ambient fluorescent lights in Chungking Express

Ambient fluorescent lights in Chungking Express  •  Film lighting

Ambient lights can also occasionally fall into another category if they’re used as they are in the above image. Any light source that appears in the frame of a shot is referred to as practical lighting .

But practical lighting in movies doesn’t have to be ambient– it could also be placed in the shot by a gaffer .

GAFFER DEFINITION

What is a gaffer.

A gaffer is the head lighting electrician on set. As such, she runs the entire electrical department of the crew, and helps the director of photography achieve the film lighting desired for each shot.

Practical lighting for film is often closely related to motivated lighting – yes, another category, but this one’s slightly different. Motivated lighting in movies refers to a lighting approach rather than a source.

Motivated lighting is filmmaking lighting — wait for it — which has motivation. In other words, it is lighting that has a logical reason for appearing the way it does in a shot.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Three Thousand Years Of Longing

Three Thousand Years Of Longing  •  Types of lighting in film

There’s a lot of lighting going on here, with a variety of sources and textures. There’s two prominently featured practical lights, the lamps which are on either side of Alithea. 

The right lamp provides some edge light on her back, and the left provides a diffused red glow on her face – or so it seems. It’s likely that the red lamp, while providing motivation for a warm light on Alithea’s face, is not actually the light providing it.

That’s probably a much less aesthetically pleasing light off frame.

Then, of course, there’s the harsh blue spotlight shining down on the object of Alithea’s attention. Like the red light on her face, this light is likely created by a strong film light just off frame. But that’s not how we view the light in the scene– we can safely assume that it is coming from the sun through a window in the bizarre. So this light, too, is motivated.

Check out our video focusing on the master of practical lighting for film, Roger Deakins , below.

Deakins talks practicals  •   Subscribe on YouTube

As Deakins illustrates, knowing all of the types of lights at your disposal is key in creating a shot filled with dynamic lighting.

Before we go on, below is a PDF of a film lighting cheatsheet. Just click the image to download. 

Cinematic Lighting Cheatsheet PDF Download

Click to view and download Cinematic Lighting Cheatsheet  PDF below.

Cinematic Lighting Cheatsheet Cheatsheet PDF Download StudioBinder

Click above to  download Cinematic Lighting Cheatsheet PDF

Different types of lighting in film, lighting metrics.

While film lighting is certainly an artform, it also involves a certain level of scientific knowledge. Many cinematographers and gaffers know their fair share of physics, and as we’ll explain in this section, it’s for good reason.

There are two main types of lighting measurements which cinematographers are concerned with: strength and temperature.

A light source’s strength is measured in lumens. But lumens don’t always tell the whole story. DP’s and gaffers also need to be concerned with incidental light, which refers to how much light actually reaches a subject. Incidental light is measured in lux or foot candles.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Lumens chart

Lumens chart  •  Types of lighting in film

But wait, there’s more! Understandably, a cinematographer needs to know how much of that incidental light is going to reach the camera. That light, the light which shows up on your viewfinder, is referred to as reflective light – it’s light which has been reflected off an object and onto your cam’s sensor.

The amount of light which reaches the camera is dependent on two main variables (math incoming): the strength of the light source and the source’s distance from the subject.

Imagine you’re trekking through a dark wood like some character out of a Brothers Grimm fable, and you need a light in order to see. A kindly fairy godmother presents you with two options: a small, flickering candle or a heavy-duty flashlight. Presumably, you’d take the flashlight, and that’s because the flashlight is stronger – it has more lumens.

But as you’re trekking through this dark wood, you realize that you’re still pretty frightened because your flashlight’s light only reaches so far ahead of you. That’s where light’s distance comes into play: the farther a subject is from a light, the less that light will show up, the less incidental light there will be.

This phenomenon is called light falloff. In order to calculate just how much a light can be expected to fall off, we use an equation called the Inverse Square Law. The equation is as follows:

Intensity of Light = 1 / Distance²

The farther you get from light, the more diffuse it gets, as you can see in this illustration:

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Inverse Square Law

Inverse Square Law  •  Lighting for film

Temperature.

A light source’s temperature is just as important as its strength, because while strength dictates brightness, temperature dictates color.

Color temperature is measured in Kelvins, and the more Kelvins a light has, the more blue it is. Daylight sits at around 5600 Kelvin, while most tungsten lights are about 3200 Kelvin.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Handy Color Temperature Chart

Handy Color Temperature Chart  •  Lighting in movies

If you’ve filmed inside near a window before, you’ve probably noticed this color discrepancy. If you split the difference when white balancing, the sun (or moonlight) coming through the window probably reads as blue, and the artificial light inside reads as orange.

Stanley Kubrick makes heavy use of this contrast in Eyes Wide Shut .

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Eyes Wide Shut

Eyes Wide Shut  •  Lighting for filming

Notice that the light coming through the window is a deep blue, while the light from the hallway is a warm orange. It’s likely, however, that cinematographer Larry Smith were not using actual moonlight through the window. 

And this is where knowledge of color temperature can really come in handy.

The Eyes Wide Shut crew knew that to mimic moonlight, they could simply use gels on the lights to achieve a color temperature that was far bluer than the light inside.

Check out our video on color temperature for lighting in filming.

Color temperature  •   Subscribe on YouTube

Once you have a firm grasp on light strength and temperature, your lighting in filming can become far more deliberate. Achieving the look you’ve dreamt up in your head won’t be a guessing game.

Lighting Terms for Film

Film lighting terms.

Believe it or not, we’ve only just scratched the surface of lighting terms for film that you’re likely to hear on set. Let’s do a quick rundown of some more terms so that your head isn’t left spinning when you happen to be standing next to the cinematographer.

One of the most basic, and important, terms when it comes to lighting for film is exposure . Exposure refers to the amount of light that reaches a camera’s film sensor (you’ll recall we referred to that light as reflective).

An image which is overexposed is getting too much light, so that certain elements of the shot are washed out.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide LOTR Deliberate overexposure in LOTR

Deliberate overexposure in LOTR  •  Types of lighting in film

An underexposed frame is one which is losing data on the other end– it’s simply too dark. There are a variety of ways to solve overexposure or underexposure beyond adjusting lights. A camera operator can adjust the aperture , shutter speed , or ISO to better suit the lighting set up.

The aperture determines how much light will enter a lens and hit the camera’s sensor. An aperture’s size is measured in F-stops.

Two other terms that are commonly used when describing a lighting approach are high key and low key . These approaches are defined by their contrast ratio, the contrast between light and shadow.

High key lighting has a low contrast ratio. This means that the difference between the darkest areas in the frame and the brightest is relatively small.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Her High key lighting in Her

High key lighting in Her  •  Lighting on film set

Low key lighting, unsurprisingly, is the opposite. Its highlights are bright and shadows are dark. This lighting approach is most iconically used in noirs, but is popular all over the genre spectrum.

Chiaroscuro also refers to this type of low key lighting, boasting deep, dark shadows that heighten the feeling of ominous mystery.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Touch of Evil Chiaroscuro lighting in Touch of Evil

Chiaroscuro lighting in Touch of Evil  •  Why is lighting important in film?

High and low key lighting are made up of hard light and soft light . Hard light refers to harsh, directional lighting which creates pronounced, dark shadows. Soft light, on the other hand, is diffused, meaning the contrast ratio it creates is often much lower.

Because of this, high key lighting often employs soft light, and low key lighting uses hard light, as you can see in the above frames.

There’s also terminology which refers to a light’s location. Magic hour , otherwise referred to as golden hour, is when the sun is positioned low in the sky, creating a soft, warm light which looks great on camera.

Smart side and dumb side refer to a light’s position in relation to the camera. The dumb side, also labeled the broad side, is when a light is pointed at the side of a subject which is facing the camera, as you can see in this shot from When Harry Met Sally :

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide When Harry Met Sally

When Harry Met Sally  •  Types of lighting in film

Dumb side lighting is often used in feel-good settings like this. We can see everything, and are therefore more at ease as an audience. 

Smart side lighting, also referred to as short side, is when a light is pointed at the side of a subject which is not facing the camera. The effect is far more dramatic and, in certain settings, scary. In A Nightmare On Elm Street , Wes Craven mostly lights Freddy Krueger’s smart side.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Nightmare on Elm Street

Nightmare on Elm Street  •  Film lighting

He’s therefore little more than a silhouette, putting the viewer on edge. Smart side movie lighting can also result in a lens flare , which is when a light hits the camera lens. J.J. Abrams is notorious for this effect.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Star Trek

Star Trek  •  Types of lighting in film

Lights within the frame that are out of focus can also create bokeh , if you have a shallow enough focus. The effect is dreamlike, placing the subject far from the rest of the world.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Grand Budapest Hotel

Grand Budapest Hotel  •  Movie lighting

So now you’ve got a small dictionary’s worth of terms to rattle off next time you’re on set. But what good are these terms if you don’t have the gear to achieve them?

Type of Lighting in Film

Film lighting gear.

If you’ve ever been on a professional film set, you know that there’s a lot of equipment, and a huge chunk of the truckloads of equipment have to do with lighting. So with that in mind, we probably won’t be able to get into every single piece of movie lighting gear you might encounter, but we can look at a few of the most common pieces of equipment you should be familiar with.

As we mentioned before, lighting for cinema comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, and so you’ll run into a lot of different types of lights on set.

Tungsten lights are powerful sources which emit a warm color temperature. HMI lights are even more powerful, and emit a slightly cooler temperature, which means they are often used to replicate daylight.

Fluorescent lights are less powerful, and give off a soft, cool light. Kino Flos are banks of tube lights which have adjustable color temperatures. LED lights offer even more control over color and strength, even though they usually won’t achieve the level of brightness an HMI can.

Dials on lights aren’t the only way to manipulate a source’s color. You can also use a gel, which is a translucent thin sheet of plastic that comes in a variety of colors.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Neon Demon Neon Demon lighting setup

Neon Demon movie lighting setup  •  Lighting for filming

You can also adjust how hard a light is with a variety of diffusers . The more diffused a light source is, the softer the light it emits.

Soft boxes put a white cloth in front of a light, and diffusion paper has a similar effect just with – you guessed it — paper. Sometimes a silk is used for very large light sources. Roger Deakins is a big proponent of this approach.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide Revolutionary Road Diffusion via bounce on Revolutionary Road

Diffusion via bounce on Revolutionary Road  •  Movie lighting

There’s also natural diffusers as well, like fog, smoke, and the sun’s biggest diffuser, clouds.

Reflectors can also help with diffusion, as you can see above, while also redirecting light. Beadboards are styrofoam boards that have rough surfaces which break up light in a more uneven manner, while foamcore is a flatter bounce because its surface is consistent.

We can also adjust a light source's strength by using neutral density gels, which, like other gels, can be placed over a light.

Flags totally block out light, as they are completely opaque boards. Barn doors are also opaque, but attached to lights themselves to adjust their direction and shape. Egg crates do a similar job.

Film Lighting The Ultimate Guide The egg crate

The egg crate  •  Types of lighting in film

Cookies, short for cucoloris, add texture to a light. They’re boards with patterns cut into them.

Of course, a light can’t just stand on its own (usually), so you’re going to need light stands or C-stands , which are multi-purpose stands that can hold lights, flags, reflectors, and more.

And remember all the light measurements we were talking about in our previous section? Well, to take those measurements you need a light meter , which can tell you how much incidental lighting there is in a given area.

We could go on (and on), but for now we’ll stop here. If you’ve got access to just what we mentioned above, you’ll have more than enough to create the illumination you need on set.

Happy lighting.

Portrait Lighting Setups

Now that you’ve got the terms, you’ve got the gear, and you’ve got the will, check out our comprehensive guide to portrait lighting. You can use your new knowledge of types of lighting in film to fantastic ends.

Up Next: Portrait Lighting →

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