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An artifact analysis for A walk to remember (2002) trailer (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R3b19svqbls) Focus on “moments of intensity and patterns of frequency, contrast, and anomaly” According to the Teacher, it is the key for an A. talk about ethos, pathos, and logos. 50% of the grade based on the fundamental analysis and 30% on the rhetorical analysis. Read the attached files for an example and further instructions.


Initial Artifact Analysis: A walk to remember (2002)

A walk to remember (2002) is a movie that features two main characters Jamie Sullivan (a popular, easy-going student) and Landon Carter (a reserved, focused reverend’s daughter), two teens from North Carolina who get in trouble for pulling a prank on a student leading to his hospitalization. The two are punished by being compelled to engage in community service. As part of the punishment, Landon is required to become a lead character in a school play. The two characters fall in love but a deep secret that exists between them poses a threat to their relationship. In the trailer of this movie, a narrator introduces the main characters as well as selected scenes aimed at providing as much information as possible about the movie. In this initial artifact analysis, one can identify the deeper meaning from the movie trailer using both fundamental analysis and rhetorical analysis. This paper sets out to provide this kind of analysis.

            To begin with, the first impression of the movie is that it is a “teen” kind of movie, one where a group of teens is engaging in mischief. As the trailer progresses, an aspect of intimacy is introduced through conversations between Landon and Sullivan. As the conversations and scenes unfold, the narrator utters the words “two people who have nothing in common…have everything to learn from each other”. Apart from the surface meaning of these words, they also have a deeper meaning that of the growing love between the two characters. Moreover, Sullivan’s words: “Dad I am not a child”, followed by her father’s response: “it is him I don’t trust, not you”, shed light on the strictness with which Sullivan’s reverend father has raised her. In this movie, therefore, words are filled with meaning, scenes portray a deeper meaning that goes beyond conventional interpretation. It is on this basis that the goal of character development is achieved.

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“One…Two…Three…!” This is the first words in the movie, and they are being uttered by the narrator of the movie trailer. The person saying these words raises his voice progressively, creating the impression that a lot is at stake as far as the next action being taken is concerned. Indeed, this is true because two characters are being given the go-ahead to jump from high ground. As they jump, the background soundtrack becomes louder, and it is accompanied by loud cheers from the spectating teens. Next, the “Warner Bros. Pictures” logo flashes across the screen immediately after the incident. Warner Bros. Pictures is an entertainment company that oversaw the production of the movie. As the logo fades from the screen, students can still be heard shouting. This may be considered as an aspect of pathos in the sense that a crucial introduction is launched at the precise point where the audiences’ emotive realms have been most strongly tickled. 

“Landon Carter!” is the next sentence that the narrator utters in a progressively rising tone. These two words provide a very deep meaning to the movie. They refer to one of the main characters. By uttering these words with a raised voice, the narrator is invoking pathos by drawing attention to the other main character in the movie. The audience is unlikely to forget those two words not because of their inherent meaning but due to the context and manner in which they have been uttered. The element of pathos is also repeated in the scene that follows: cars racing at high speed accompanied by shouts from spectating teens. One of the cars hits a large bin full of water: an accident has happened. The next scene shows a teen with a bandage on his face. The audience is expected to draw a connection between the previous events and the bandage. The connection between these two events is an indication of the use of logos in the trailer.

“Jamie Sullivan!” These are the next words uttered by the narrator with a raised voice. The tone used is similar to the one that was used to introduce Landon Carter. Again, it takes the use of pathos for the audience to decipher meaning relating to the status of the two names as references to the movie’s main characters. The accompanying soundtrack adds to the dramatic effect aimed at enhancing the aspect of pathos. In the scene that follows, aspects of ethos can be derived, whereby a teacher is addressing the injured student. The teacher uses a commanding tone while the injured student portrays a somber, keen mood. The movie produces no doubt figured out that the status of the teacher gives credibility to his words and demeanor. Conversely, the student’s submissive attitude is interpreted to be a consequence of the presumed credibility of the teacher’s utterances.

“Nice sweater”. These words are uttered by one of the female students, to which the baggily dressed, reserved Sullivan responds with a soft “Thank you”. This setting highlights an aspect of logos since the audience assumes that the address is soft-spoken. For the same reason, her engagement in meaningful activities in contrast to the idling students around her leads viewers to conclude that she is a focused person. This demonstrates that aspects of logos have been used effectively in the trailer.

In conclusion, this initial artifact analysis demonstrates that there is some richness of meaning in the trailer for the movie A walk to remember (2002) that is best appreciated through the use of rhetorical methods. Moreover, the fundamental analysis presented in this paper shows that the use of simple sentences, changes in tone by the narrator, proper choice of sounds and gestures, and sequencing of scenes plays a critical role in creating deeper meanings in a movie trailer.

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