Dissecting of a Scene

October 13, 2011



This scene is from Double Indemnity,  in this scene Keyes is telling Neff how there something wrong with the claims that Phyllis, Keyes used his “little man” to dissects what could have happened, Keyes was convinced that this is not a accident.

 First Shot
 MS, Neff had just gotten off the phone with Phyllis, Keyes rings the door bell and came inside the house. The camera was placed in the corner of a room moving around as Neff and key talks. The camera seems to be focus on Keyes, moving backward as he walk toward the camera and coming forward while he moves back.

Music was very calm and provides as a relief for Neff who had just thought  he had gotten away with it. As soon as Keyes comes it the music  changed, very dramatized, and suspenseful, stooping as soon as Keyes starts to talk.

Neff puts a cigaretts in his mouth but did not light it, it’s almost as he is nervous creating a very suspenseful mood.

Keys established that maybe Phyllis husband didn’t know he was insured.

Straight Cut to next shot.

Shot #2

MS, camera facing directly at the actor toward the door.

Keyes answer his own question.

Straight Cut to next shot

Shot #3

MS, camera remained the same as the last 2 shot.Lighting came from the lamb on the bottom left corner, the lamb is not very bright leaving shadows in he background. Another source of light came from Neff lighting his cigarretts . Keyes walks out of the shot, coming right back with his head facing away from the camera.

Keyes establishes that the incident was not an accident nor was it a suicide.

Straight cut to next shot

Shot #4

MS, (same as the past 3)

Light come from the lamb .

Keyes explain how its silly that a man takes out an insurance and than died 2 week later for the exact ridiculous reason.

Straight Cut to next scene

Shot # 5

LS, this shot was was very short, about 5 second long leaving a pause.

The lamb is now fully seen

Both character faces away from the camera.

Straight Cut to next shot

Shot #7

MS, the lamb is not back to bottom left.

Neff asked if Keyes thinks its muder.

Straight Cut to next shot

Shots #8

LS, Phyllis enter the scene.

Sounds: Neff and Keyes is still talking about who he suspect

Phyllis over heard the conversation, and now knows she is suspected by Keyes.

Lighting comes from 4 sources on the wall.

The hall is not very lit

Straight cut

Shot #9

MS camera back into the room

Lights remain on the bottom.

Keyes is convinced that there was “something was worked on us”

Straight Cut

Shot #10

LS, camera now in the hall way

Straight Cut

Shots #11

MS, Phyllis is behind the door, the door is lit, suspenseful music started playing again as Keyes comes toward the camera, Neff light his cigar.

Straight Cut

Shot #12

Close up of Phyllis face showing fear, anxiety, one might say even tears

Keyes leaves and Phyllis enter the appartment.

The important of this since is that, we as viewer see Keyes who is a very intelligent man put himself to work. His deductive reasoning skills in beyond believe. We see that Phyllis and Neff plans starting to fall apart just as Neff fears. The one man who Neff thought would figure it out, did in fact figure out but however not incriminating to Neff. The director uses this very long scene as almost the climax of the story. A well planned murder is being put to the test by an expert in insurance. I thought that lighting of the lamb seems to be mostly placed at the bottom left might have been a symbol for Neff hope.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply