Media Techniques in The Lion King

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Media techniques such as camera angles, music and lighting are specifically used to highlight Simba and Scar’s personalities. Simba is seen as the force of good and Scar being the force of evil. Simba was chosen to analyse because of his innocence and curiosity, which eventually leads him into danger. Scar was chosen because of his devilish acts and lack of conscience, which portrays him as being a villain. Simba is a very open and honest creature. His light colours represent the essence of good, yet he is still very dependant on his father Mufasa.

They are a very closely knit family unit, constantly maintaining a watchful eye over Simba’s whereabouts. Simba is regularly seen in the sunlight portraying the picture of innocence but on the other hand he also maintains a streak of big headedness, it is this, which leads him into trouble. Scar on the other hand is a very scheming character, his entry words in the film were “Life isn’t fair, is it? ” These words show Scar’s tainted and vicious jealous streak against Simba.

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These words were spoken whilst taunting a small mouse which was about to be his next meal.

Scar has an abundance of dark colours, especially his black, bushy mane, which signifies his evil nature. Scar, as his name states, has a large scar over his right eye. Throughout the family line there is no evil, with the exception of Scar, who is the black sheep of the family. Scar’s personality, evilness and devilish ways are depicted throughout the weather scenes.

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Simba and Scar’s personalities are totally different, you see Simba as a young, honest, energetic cub where as Scar is seen as a dark, wicked, devious creature.

These two characters are shown throughout the film as complete opposites, the eyes show distinct difference as Simba has black, shiny, lovable eyes but Scar has green, devious, corrupt eyes. Such things as the weather and music show the opposites of these two characters, sunlight, clear skies, bright clear happy music tends to introduce Simba where as black, dingy, sunless skies and droning, torturing music would be played on Scars appearance. The first scene in which I am going to analyse a character is set in a dingy green cave with animal skeletons scattered throughout.

Scar enters the scene amidst three squabbling hyenas fighting over food rations. Scar is surrounded by green mist which filters throughout the cave sometimes partially blocking his profile. He is sitting on top of a rock looking down on the hungry hyenas, the atmosphere is dingy and gives you an eerie feeling. The setting is trying to tell you that a devilish scheme is about to be launched. Scar speaks very proper and concise with an evil tone but the hyenas pay him no respect, they laugh at him, taunt him and compare him with Mufasa.

This aggravates Scar, his eyes show the hatred and the hyenas back off quoting “Your one of us, your our pal,” because they realise Scars anger. Scar makes comment about the two lion cubs saying that the hyenas were handed them on a plate and couldn’t dispose of them so why should he feed the hyenas. He waves a piece of meat above the hyenas, taunting them, they are hungry and are prepared to do any task in exchange for the food. Music is introduced whilst Scar is telling the hyenas about getting rid of Mufasa and Simba. The music tempo increases and Scar starts to creep forward with clouds of green dingy smoke surrounding his body.

He starts to sing the song “Be Prepared,” and jumps about the cave gaining attention with his quick movements and evil eye contact. He calls the hyenas ‘thick,’ and says “We’re talking kings and concessions,” with which he starts to encircle the hyenas. His song is belittling the hyenas, saying how stupid they are and telling them to “Prepare for a chance of a lifetime,” he is angry and it shows in his voice. Scar is scheming a way of getting rid of Simba and Mufasa and gaining the throne for himself. He is giving the hyenas the opportunity to help, do the deed then be rewarded.

The lighting seems to drop and the characters, especially the hyenas, are intensely looking as they feel this could be an opportunity for them to move up the food chain. Scar’s song seems to have given him confidence, his body language is full of confidence and his facial expressions are those of a lion with a job to finish. Scar says “Be prepared for the death of the king,” “We re going to kill him and Simba,” he tells the hyenas. “Stick with me and you’ll never go hungry again,” “I’ll be king. ” This shows the confidence and aggressive nature which Scar has adopted.

The music increases dramatically and the dingy cave seems to open up like a mushroom, leaving hundreds of hyenas gathered on ledges throughout the cave. The camera angle widens and brings in a hungry army of rampant hyenas. The music seems to bring the creatures to life. The camera switches to Scar situated high on a rock looking down on an army of parading hyenas. The setting quickly changes from a green, murky, dismal area to a red, fire-filled, erupting cave. Blasts of hot red gasses erupt from the floor of the cave, surrounding Scar.

The song ends on a quick setting change once more with the cave opening up and clear skies being shown with all the hyenas standing to attention on the rock and cliff faces. Scar is situated on the highest peak with a half moon in the background. This symbolises Scar on a pinnacle who would not stop at anything to perform his devilish deeds. He is intent on committing his evil scheme. The second scene I am about to analyse begins with the camera focusing in on a deep canyon, the skies are bright and all seems rather pleasant. Scar is talking to Simba on a stone underneath a tree.

Scar speaks in a loving manor teasing Simba nicely, tempting him, advising him that his father has a surprise. Simba is very inquisitive, he shows fondness towards Scar asking him to spill out the surprise. Scar is very devious, he has a devilish scheme in mind and asks Simba to wait until his father appears. Scar leaves to set his devilish scheme in motion but Simba follows. With a posh direct voice Scar tells Simba that he must wait for his father, this he does by reflecting back on an incident when Simba wandered off without permission to an area off limits. Simba replied to Scar “You know about that? He feels very sorry that everyone knew about the incident and his body language was that of an embarrassed young cub.

Simba is disgusted in himself but Scar being very devious, puts his arm around him and hugs him making him feel better but Scar has other reasons for doing this. Scar rolls his eyes in a manner which offers safety to Simba, but really all Scar wishes to do is to have Simba stay on the rock and his plan can be put into motion. Simba is getting quite excited, his body and eyes show a happy cub waiting in anticipation for some kind of present. He asks again “Uncle Scar, will I like the surprise? His tail is in the air and he prances on the rock. Scar replies “Simba, it’s to die for,” you can see in his eyes that his plan is about to be put in motion and he sleeks away. The camera then shows an aerial shot of the canyon, the angle then widens out and moves upwards to a plateau at the very top. Music begins with a droning nature as if something tragic is going to happen and there on top of the plains are thousands of buffalo grazing peacefully. The camera then changes angle and focuses on three hyenas in a cave. They are waiting for a signal from Scar who appears on top of the rock with the camera focusing on him from below.

The skies are clear and blue, the camera then switches to focus in on Simba waiting patiently on the rock. He is bored of waiting and his body language portrays this but his attention is grabbed by a chameleon climbing onto the rock. His facial expression changes, he wants to be tough, he tries roaring to frighten the lizard away, he wishes to stand tall. The delight of frightening away the lizard is short lived, his body trembles and shakes, his face is twisted with fright, the whole canyon shudders as if an earthquake is about to occur.

The earth moves, rocks fall down the canyon slopes and Simba’s eyes virtually pop out of his head, he is shaking with terror. Music is introduced along with the cry of birds, hooves rattling and thousands of buffalo descend down the canyon slopes. The camera picks up the buffalo charging down the canyon slopes, it makes them seem as though they are picking up momentum on the way down. The camera then zooms in on an absolutely fear stricken baby lion cubs face with large green eyes the size of plates and a mouth wide open the size of a canyon. The tempo of the music increases with the animals getting closer.

Simba is trying to keep ahead of the frenzied stampede and the camera zooms in to show him just ahead, virtually under the buffalo’s hooves. The camera then picks out the marauding hyenas who are snapping at the heels of the buffalo causing the stampede to continue. The scene is quickly changed and Scar appears approaching Mufasa with a worried look on his face advising him with great concern, or pretend concern, that Simba was in the canyon amongst the stampeding buffalo. Once again the camera reverts back on Simba showing his little body all out of co-ordination now being headed by the herd of buffalo.

Simba manages to jump and cling on to a tree branch, his body is all at sixes and sevens hanging on for dear life terrified in case he falls into the path of the buffalo. The canyon is covered with dust and dirt flung up from the hooves of the animals. It is very hard to focus in as vision is very limited due to the murky background. Panic is shown in Mufasa’s face, he fears no evil and sprints off to try to save his son. The excitement is intensified as the music tempo rises again throwing out to the audience what a dangerous situation there is. Mufasa joins the stampeding buffalo shouting out to Simba that he must hold on to the branch.

On the other hand Scar is sitting on the rock hoping his plan is going to be successful. The oncoming buffalo trample Mufasa, it seems as though the animals are running at double their speed, everything is happening so quickly. Mufasa gets to his feet, grabs hold of Simba and places him to safety. Scar is overlooking the events with a worried look, he is pacing backwards and forwards like a caged lion. Mufasa slips down the canyon face into the path of the marauding buffalo while Simba looks on in hysterics crying and shouting for his father’s safety, his eyes have a worried look as if something terrible is going to happen.

The camera focuses in on Simba’s eyes which are whirling around in his head like marbles, terrified of the outcome, whether he is going to see his father again. The chorus music becomes louder and Mufasa has one last ditched attempt to claw his way up the cliff face. Dust surrounds the plains and Simba looks on, shaking, hoping his father will succeed. The steep slope becomes even steeper and the camera focuses on Mufasa from above clawing his way up the slope dislodging rocks on his way. His eyes are those of one who is frightened praying for help to save him from the herds of buffalo beneath.

He eventually gets to the top with his paws grasping on for grim death and he asks Scar to help pull him the final few yards to the surface. His face is painful, worried and distressed, it is becoming harder to hang on. “Scar, brother, help me,” with which Scar sinks his claws into Mufasa’s paws with great enjoyment, he stares into Mufasa’s eyes, he has a devilish grin on his face where as Mufasa’s eyes are the size of glistening yellow plates showing how horrified he is. The camera focuses deeper into Mufasa’s eyes, this shows how life and death the next few moments are going to be.

Scar, with nails clenched firmly says “Long live the king,” and then throws Mufasa causing him to catapult from the cliff edge into the path of the oncoming buffalo. The camera focuses in on Simba who has witnessed his father falling, his mouth is open and his eyes are protruding from his head in shock. Simba is seen on the rock shouting for his father in terror, a lonely little lion cub left all on his own. He bounces down the canyon slopes racing in horror to reach the prostrate trampled body of his father. The buffalo disperse leaving a dark dismal atmosphere in the canyon.

Simba wanders through it, lost and bewildered, shouting for his father. A lonely buffalo trots past amidst the gloom raising Simba’s hopes that his father had appeared. Just ahead Simba sees his father laid on the floor, his eyes show horror and he doesn’t know what to expect. He slouches forward slowly with his stomach touching the floor, the body language show his uncertainty of what he is going to encounter. Music begins very solemn and quiet with a saddening tone blatantly giving away the outcome of previous events.

He slowly walks around his father and speaks in Mufasa’s face saying “Dad, get up,” he waits for a reply but none is forthcoming. He rubs his body against Mufasa’s, trying to wake him back to life but he realises the worst, his father is dead. His body language is that of a creature which has lost all confidence, protection and fatherly figure, he is so depressed, he does not know which direction to turn to. He cries, “Help, someone, anybody,” the tears roll down his cheeks from those big sad devastated eyes.

The music increases as he pushes his body under his prostrate father’s paws to gain an element of comfort from the situation. It is sad, depressing music that filters through the screen and through the dismal murky atmosphere enters Scar with his slanting, evil eyes peering over the stricken body of his brother. Scar, with a quiet finger pointing tone, says to Simba “What have you done? ” He is trying to make Simba feel regretful, the blame has been shifted onto the woeful cub. “The king is dead,” Scar says to Simba who is really horrified, has he really caused his fathers death? He tried to save me, it was an accident,” Simba says with his face screwed up with pain. Scar in an evil way then comforts Simba by saying “No one ever means to do these things,” he knows that he has caused his brothers death but he wishes to turn the blame around to make the cub feel guilty so that he can become king. His body language is assertive giving the opinion that he is right. Scar then rubs salt into the wound by saying “If it wasn’t for you, he’d still be alive,” and “What will your mother think? ” Simba is distraught, the blame seems to have been placed on him.

Scar stares into Simba’s eyes, the look of the devil, “Run away Simba, run away and never return,” Simba backs off, he has been singled out. His body language shows fright and remorse and he feels there is no place to hide so he turns and runs to escape from what he feels he has caused. The camera focuses on a lonely cub running away for dear life from an act which he feels he is responsible for. A lonely road in the distance, the only place for the young cub to go, whilst in the background the words “Kill him,” are issued to the rampant hyenas showing Scar’s evilness.

The third scene I will analyse opens with Scar in a dominant mood not being prepared to accept that the lionesses are unable to find food due to a shortage. He is very angry, his eyes are focused on Serabi and knocks her to the floor in anger after she has degraded him in comparison to Mufasa. Music begins throughout the argument gradually becoming louder when she is knocked to the floor. The music continues to increase in tempo and sound leading up to Simba’s entrance on a rock overlooking the scene. Thunder and lightning rumble along with the increased volume to excite the viewers of Simba’s entrance.

The camera zooms in on Simba standing proud on the rock, his long golden mane blowing in the wind reflecting the lightning rays. Simba leaps down the slope to his prostrate mother’s side, he is very angry and his body language depicts this. His facial expression shows he is in no mood to compromise, he is going to be king. He is very aggressive and Scar thinks that he is Mufasa. Scar backs off towards the rocks in a cowardly manner not knowing what to expect. The music quietens down as Simba approaches his mother and comforts her. He shows much affection, nuzzling her in a worried way in case her injuries are serious.

She looks up and says “Mufasa? ” Then Simba replies “No, it’s me. ” Simba nuzzles her again happy that she is not injured, he has missed his mother so much. Scar that realises it is Simba, “Simba,” he says in a clever, nice manner screwing his face as if he is happy to see him, but then, glaring as if someone had just returned from the dead. Scar says “I’m surprised to see you, alive,” and he looks up to the hyenas in anger wondering why they had not killed the little lion cub. Simba’s body language shows anger and he approaches Scar with conviction, ready to settle a score.

His mane stands tort and his eyes focus on Scar. Simba says “Give me one good reason why I should not rip you apart,” his teeth are clenched and Scar is frightened, he slouches backwards towards the rocks. Scar is full of excuses, his cowardly manner and staggered speech shows the extent of the ordeal. Simba tells him to “Step down,” as he is going to be king. Scar with a clever, cocky nature says that he would but he asks Simba to look up the cliff face, the camera zooms in on the ledges where hundreds of snarling hyenas sit. They think I am king,” says Scar, this is to try to frighten Simba off to show that he has some strength behind him. Simba is not put off by this, he is backed up by the lionesses and gives Scar an ultimatum, “Step down or fight. ” He stares directly into Scars face with a determined look, Scar turns and walks away from Simba, once again he has a smirk on his face, obviously another little scheme up his sleeve. Scar screws up his face, he doesn’t want any trouble, after all, they are family. Simba follows, his eyes glaring at Scar but Scar with his devious nature wonders if his subjects know what happened to Mufasa.

Scar stalks around Simba asking if he has told his little secret, Scar’s confidence had risen and Simba is astonished, eyes wide open, Simba backs off. Scar walks away from Simba over to the lionesses, “Tell them,” he says “Who was responsible for Mufasa’s death. ” The music is gradually picking up in volume, leading up to the answer from Simba that he killed his father. Thunder and lightening flash from above, all building up the tempo. Simba is very remorseful and sorry, he lowers his head in shame, his body language shows regret. Music is very sad and depressing representing the feelings of Simba.

Simba closes his eyes as if this wasn’t happening and says “It’s true. ” Lightning flashes lighting up the screen, the forks of the lightning slither down the screen and the camera focuses in on Scar. His eyes are like green emeralds sparkling in the night, peering at Simba, his face is lit up, twisted with anger. The position has changed once again, Scar seems as though he is in control of the situation now. “You see, he admits it,” says Scar in an authoritive mood. Thunder and lightning cut through the screen, the music and tempo loudens. Murderer,” Scar says in a nasty threatening tone, pointing, accusing, surrounding Simba ready to go in for the kill. He preaches to the subjects that Simba “Is guilty. ” Simba is shocked and is forced back to the edge of the cliff by Scar in a nose to nose fashion. Scar lunges at him, forcing him over the cliff edge, once again the music loudens to increase the excitement. The camera changes angles to below the cliff and focuses on Simba clinging on to the edge. Fire erupts from the ground, the red smoke surrounds the lions and sparks erupt from below like fireworks.

Simba clings to the rock face while Scar in a very cocky mood, looking rather pleased with himself saying “This looks familiar. ” Simba’s mane blows in the breeze as his claws sink deeply into the rock face. Scar digs his claws into Simba’s paws and then moves down slowly and deliberately to whisper into Simba’s ear “I killed Mufasa. ” Scar’s face lights up with delight, his face is orange, he is ready to kill off Simba. This was sufficient to give Simba additional strength and power, in his memory he reflects back to his father being murdered by Scar and his strength helps him leap back up onto the rock above.

The screams of him seeing his father die taunt his memory and give him great strength. “Murderer,” Simba cries, he now has the upper hand, he is a lion with a mission and his facial expressions show how determined he is. He forces Scar to the ground and holds him by the throat, the advantage has been changing but this seems the last straw for Scar. Scar stammers and whispers as Simba applies more pressure to his throat “Tell them the truth so that they can hear you. ” Scar twists his face in pain and says “I killed Mufasa. ” Simba’s face is twisted with exerting pressure to get the vital evidence.

The music builds up once more as Simba gains the admission, then all the Subjects turn on Scar to kill him for his deceit. Scar forces off the lionesses and tries to escape. Scar sleeks up the cliff edge, the music is fast and noisy showing that a chase is going to occur. Simba follows Scar and the tempo rises, they increase their pace with fire exploding from either side of the ledges. They climb to the top of the mountain, the background is red with fire, ashes and smoke fly through the atmosphere. Scar can get no further, he has reached the edge of the cliff and grinds to a halt.

Down below is a fiery inferno, smoke belches up from the ground with sparks exploding like fireworks. The camera focuses in on Scar’s face, he is terrified, eyes of a coward, stomach slouching on the floor with his mane flat to his back. Simba follows to the top of the mountain, bounding after Scar calling him “Murderer. ” Simba’s face shows his intensions, he has a job to do and he is going to do it in a determined fashion. Scar begs for mercy, his voice and body are very shaky, fright is erupting from his anatomy. Simba says “You don’t deserve to live,” Scar is showing his true cowardly colours ready to blame anyone to get out of the hole.

He puts the blame onto the hyenas who are standing on a ledge further down the mountain. Simba approaches Scar, his mane glistening in the light of the fire. Smoky patches surround the screen, the dismal murky atmosphere is building up the tension. “Why should I believe you, all you ever told me was lies,” Simba says in a dominant fashion, this is said whilst peering into Scars eyes. Scar says “You wouldn’t kill your own uncle,” hoping for pity. Simba replies “I’m not like you,” Scar is relieved and his facial expressions show this, he has been let off the hook.

Simba has no such plan though and tells Scar to run away and never return. Scar is shocked, his eyes are wide and yellow and he cannot believe that Simba would do this to him. Scar with his mouth wide open says “Yes,” and slouches off with his stomach scrubbing the ground, but Scar had one last trick left. Scar says “As you wish your majesty,” and grasps a handful of hot ashes from the ground and throws them into Simba’s face. Scars voice is raised as he does this deed and music erupts from the screen to signify a change of advantage.

The hot ashes cover Simba’s face causing great pain, he grimaces and tries to clear his face of the burning cinders. The noise of burning is heard in the background, obviously there is a great fire over the ridge. Scar leaps on Simba before he has a chance to get his vision back, the noise of lions roaring and snarling bellow out along with an increase in tempo. The music is fast and furious helping with the fighting scene. The two tussle ahead of a red background littered with flying sparks. The scenes are intermingled with slow motion and normal speed sections building up the excitement as fortune changes with the two battlers.

The two lions show great determination, manes being tossed about as they exchange blows. Teeth are snarling, eyes are focused and the loud music increases the excitement of the furious match. One after one the blows are exchanged until Simba launches an irrepressible blow and drop kicks Scar over the edge of the cliff. Scar rolls down the slope and lies prostrate on the ground. The thud is heard as he finally comes to rest and the music softens down. He gets back to his feet and seems quite pleased when his ‘friends’ the hyenas approach him on the ledge.

The hyenas have a different feeling, they are unhappy with Scar and his facial expressions change dramatically. His eyes launch from his head in terror, the size of green dinner plates, they show his fright. He cowers back into the ledge feeling he is about to be attacked, he wavers from side to side trying to avert this but it has no effect. Scar’s shadow is shown on the rocks at the back of the ledge and the hyenas move in for the kill. Fire is then shown to cover the scene as if to tell the viewers that this is the end of Scar and the sudden pounding of music reduces as the deed is done.

The scene then changes, the rain is falling and the fiery furnace of a red background has lifted showing a cloudy, blue-grey sky. The rain has extinguished all of the fires and Simba is seen moving slowly down the rocks to see his mother. He is in a solemn mood, the rain drips from his golden mane and he embraces his mother. This is to show that the evil has now disappeared and they can get on with their lives, the encounter is over. Simba looks around with mystical eyes surveying the surroundings and the camera then focuses on the protruding rock where as a baby he was displayed to his subjects.

Simba moves slowly up the rock face with the music steadily building up to a pitch. He embraces the wise old colourful baboon who pats him on the back showing his friendship, and tells him “It is time. ” Simba then continues up the protruding rock, prancing, head high, proud, his body language shows his subjects that he has confidence and ability to rule the kingdom. The rain lashes down and runs off his mane as he walks slowly up the rock military style, his subjects all viewing the ceremony. He looks up to the clouds which part, leaving the stars to appear.

His eyes show satisfaction and achievement, the music then softens and the word “Remember,” is spoken. This is what his father used to say, that the stars were the old kings of the jungle and he threw his head high up in the air and roared in triumph and delight. Music now starts, the circle of life is about to begin and the scene now changes to a time in the future when all the plains and mountains were once again filled with peace, happiness and more important, animals. A new horizon has been born and Simba’s subjects are paying tribute to him.

The music loudens and the camera focuses on the rock from below. The skies are blue with a touch of white cloud and all the animals are shouting with excitement for the ceremony to start. The camera slowly focuses in on Simba standing on the rock overlooking his subjects. The ‘Circle of Life’ music loudens and the wise old baboon enters into the scene with the newly born cub. Simba is a very proud father and his eyes light up when the wise old baboon lifts up the cub to his new subjects in triumph. The circle of life has revolved around again to the cheers of all the animals.

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Media Techniques in The Lion King. (2020, Jun 02). Retrieved from

Media Techniques in The Lion King
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