Analysis of Visual Effects and Cinematography in Two Movies: Lord of the Rings and Forrest Gump

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Visual effects and Cinematography are not only used to make movies more memorable and entertaining but they are also meant to help the movie’s director to pass a certain message or feeling to the audience so as to make them understand the movie better. The following is an analysis of the two film element in two movies; Forrest Gump and Lord of the Rings.


For the analysis of cinematography for Lord of The Rings I will analyze the scene where the Ring spook or wraith is first shown. The first shot in the scene is a long shot, where the hobbits are shown to be circumscribed into a corner while the rest of the shot is occupied by the impending protagonist. This shot helps the audience to fell the dreary, fearful and misgiving conditions and feelings that the hobbits were in. the next shot is a low angle shot that reveals the nature of the ring spook or wraith and helps to reveal the insinuating, demeaning, and powerful nature of the character on the horse in comparison to the four hobbits (Petrie, 2007). The low angle shot is then followed by another low angle shot of Frodo’s face to demonstrate the feeling of fear and helplessness that the four hobbits harbor.

As for Cinematography in Forrest Gump, there will be an analysis of the first scene. First, in the opening scene, the establishing shot is that of a feather being swept about by the wind, and this is important in setting up the tone for the rest of the film. The next shot is an extreme long or wide shot shown on the scene where Forrest is sat on the park bench waiting for the bus. This creates the effect of grandness and immensity of the view. The whole film uses a whole array of shots such as racking shot, Dutch tilt, low angle shot, zoom focus, and the depth focus.

Visual Effect

In the movie Forrest Gump, the director uses several special effects to enhance the film’s visual effect.  A good example is in the scene where Forrest is in Vietnam due to the war and he has to carry his friend who was injured from a series of explosions. The visual effects of the bombing are excellent and are meant to show the audience of some of the harsh conditions that the soldiers had to endure back then and the damage caused by the War. Another good use of visual effects is through Lieutenant Dan whose legs have been amputated (Moller, 2011). The film uses special VFX effects, where his legs are covered in a blue textile material, which when edited out make the lieutenant’s legs to appear amputated.

The movie Lord of the Rings provided many revolutionary and innovative effects. A good example was though the use of forced perspective where the hobbits were made to look smaller and Gandalf, the wizard was made to look taller too. Another good example of visual effects was through the use of animation where imaginary creatures such as trolls and Wargs were digitally created (Petrie, 2007). There are also other visual special effects such as the use of miniatures and through the use of programs such as Massive to simulate some of the battle scenes of the movie. These visual effects certainly made the movie more memorable.


Moller, S. (2011). Blockbusting history: Forrest Gump as a powerful medium of American cultural memory. International Social Science Journal, 62(203-204), 67-77. doi:10.1111/j.1468-2451.2011.01794.x

Petrie, D. (2007). From Hobbits to Hollywood: Essays on Peter Jacksons Lord of the Rings * The Lord of the Rings: Popular Culture in Global Context. Screen, 48(3), 411-415. doi:10.1093/screen/hjm042

August 01, 2023
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