top of page

Media Theory Revision Guide

All A level theorists covered alongside revision summaries and exam practise exercises.




My Revision

Revise, learn and apply media terms with the Essential Media Theory Revision Gyms


Essential Film!

Now available - the Essential Revision for A Level Film textbook.

Essential Revision for A Level Film Studies Twitter banner.jpg


Binary oppositions


average rating is 4.7 out of 5, based on 7 votes, Exemplar ratings

WaterAid underlines the contrasting experiences of the advert’s UK audience with those experiencing water poverty in Africa. A carefully choreographed set of stylistic oppositions at the start of the advert reinforce this sentiment, with the opening shot of a rain-soaked British scene (composed as a claustrophobic closed frame mid shot) providing a stark contrast to the open-framed long shot of Claudia’s sun-soaked search for water.


In terms of diegetic sound usage, too, the rainy ambience of the first scene is replaced by the dry crunch of Claudia’s footsteps, whilst, visually, the green colour palettes of Britain transform into dusty browns of the African Savannah. These stylistic clashes are used, ultimately, to underline the stark disparities that exists between the viewers’ water rich existence and those less fortunate than themselves

Binary oppositions

Strauss tells us that media narratives work through the construction of conflict, presenting oppositional characters or events as a means of creating viewer interest or ideological messaging.

Media terminology used

Stylistic opposition

The use of contrasting aesthetic elements. Oppositional colour palettes, editing styles, lighting treatments or compositions, for example, might be used to create visual interest.

Open frame composition

A composition that has no objects or frames at the edge. Closed frame shots usually connote freedom, but can suggest isolation if coupled with a long shot composition.

How helpful is this exemplar?Don’t love itNot greatSatisfiedReally goodExcellentHow helpful is this exemplar?
rate this
bottom of page