Angela Chen

“The world is full of complainers. But the fact is, nothing comes
with a guarantee. I don’t care if you are the Pope of Rome, President of
the United State, or Man of the Year, something can go wrong,” according to
Vesser, the detective in Blood Simple (1984) which shows what can happen
when a plan goes awry. Marty, a small bar owner in Texas, suspects his
wife, Abby’s infidelity with one of his bartenders, Ray, and hires Vesser
to kill them. The cinematography illustrates how circumstances drive human
beings, rather than their free will.By using mixture of lighting, camera
angels, and sound, the Coen brother portraits how does Abby’s affair lead
to complicated and bloody murders. This is particularly evident in the
scene where Marty offers to pay $10,000 to kill Abby and Ray.

Meeting Vesser on top of the hill, Marty plans to propose the
murdering plan. Throughout this scene, the bright sunlight functions as
hard, side lighting. In shot 1, by using these lighting, Marty has been
portrait as unattractive and drawn. The medium close up shot and side
light shows his split personality and complicated emotions: he wants to
kill Abby, whom he still in love with , because jealous predominates his
mind. During this shot, some kids near by is playing delightful music
which contracts Marty’s weighty emotions.In shot 2, everything is a
diverge of Marty’s unpleasant mood: the spacious location, Marty’s bright
yellow suit and the lively background music. All of these make him more
irritated. In addition, having both Marty and Vesser on the same frame
further distinguishes Marty from this superficially lively environment.

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Underneath the surface, Marty who is planning a murder is scared as well
deep inside of him; he is also in a less powerful position even through he
imitated the appointment.This is proved by both using the long shot
films Marty, back facing viewers, walks toward Vesser and putting Vesser in
sharp focus.

The setting switches from open environment to inside the car at shot 3
imply something that is more secretive will happen. The telephoto lens put
both Marty and Vesser in the same visual frame, and side lighting presents
half of Marty in the shadow. This further indicate Marty is in a
contradictory situation that he does not want to seek help from this
detective or commit any crime deep down, but the humiliation and jealous
drives him insane. Vesser triggers Marty’s termination for crime in order
to get himself some business, wearing the saturated color suit mocks his
immorality. Finally at shot 4, Marty who is very vulnerable deeply,
proposed his plan. The sound of the kids’ car is heard screeching away,
leaving silence to match the intensity of their discussion. Eye level shot
combines hard side lighting conveys that Marty is hurt and scared himself.

In addition, he has not eye contact with Marty and speaks in a moronic
express seems like he is telling someone’s story. This indicates that
Marty try to convince himself that he is not the cause of the upcoming
tragedy.

Finally, by using rack focus at shot 5, Marty is in sharp focus in the
background and Vesser is in soft focus in the foreground. This expresses a
shift in these two men’s position. Marty feels from unsecured and guilty
at the beginning to determinant for the murder to happen, while Vesser has
became quiet, passive and even nervous which further proved from his sweat.

The decadence of these two people merges out of surface; however they are
leading each other to this end. If not Vesser’s scorn, Marty might change
his mind, and Vesser won’t agree to kill two human being without the
monetary offer.

By presents the depravity of Vesser and Marty throughout the scent,
the Coed brothers in Blood Simple implies the violence is taking actions.

Marty and Vesser’s inability to control their action with morality finally
lead to their death.




|Shot |Shot Description|Analysis of Mise-En-Scene,|
||| |
|#1|Marty saw Vesser|Hard light and close up shot on Marty’s|
||(audience haven’t)|face, then eye level shot and saw Vesser. |
||| |
|#2|Marty walking toward |Long shot used and both of them are in one |
||Vesser who leans again|frame. Hard light on Marty|
||a car while talking to|Dolly is used. Vesser is in saturated|
||a girl|color (bright yellow suit) Marty in |
|||desaturated color (lack energy)|
|#3|After they get into|Both of them in the same frame. Hard,|
||the car. Vesser scorns|side, light, Marty in the shadow. Close up|
||about Marty’s broken |shot|
||finger and cheating|Contracting the amount the talk between|
||wife. Marty looks|Marty and Vesser. Burry background, for|
||very serious and|example the trees and mountains.|
||moody, but Vesser is |They have intimate distance|
||enthusiasm and can| |
||not stop talking| |
||| |
||| |
|#4|Marty starts talking |Vesser and Marty on different frame. Hard,|
||to offer Vesser the|side light, close-up. Half of the face in |
||job. He not looking |the dark.|
||directly at Vesser’s | |
||eye, but out to window| |
||of Vesser’s side.| |
||| |
|#5| Marty left the car|Medium close up shot, hard light|
||and came back. Half |Both of them in the frame. Marty in |
||of his body is inside |focused, but Vesser in the front is blurry.|
||and half out. Tell| |
||Vesser, his|Very quiet only Marty is talking.|
||determination of the | |
||murder.| |