Chrysler Super Bowl Commercial – Visual Review

The 2011 Chrysler Super Bowl commercial has a wide variety of camera shots that display the city of Detroit paired with flashes of a new car, synced to the popular Eminem song, Lose Yourself.

The first visual detail about this commercial that I noticed when watching it is the color scheme. Every shot in this commercial displays the same color scheme: low saturation and dull colors. The director even chose to film this commercial on a cloudy day which added to the dull color scheme. This theme of colors was used to drive home of the message that this city represents industry and hard work rather glamor and excess.

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The second visual feature about this commercial is the way the shots of the city were recorded. Each shot of the city was recorded at the point of view of a passenger of being in the car.  This film technique made the video shaky and gave a hand held feeling to the commercial, which put the viewer inside the car looking out at the city. The shots were also mainly recorded at a wide angle in one shot then the next shot would be a zoomed in section of the previous shot. This technique was also reversed throughout the video where the initial shot would a telephoto close up and then it would zoom out to reveal more of the scene.

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These two frames from the commercial show an extreme close up of a building and then the next shot is the same building at a wider angle.

The transitions  in the commercial are also very smooth and go along with the theme of the car giving a smooth ride to passengers. Often the commercial would use passing structures in the foreground such as a lamp post to transition to the next frame.  The object in the foreground would occupy the frame for a split second which would allow for a seamless transition to the next shot. The other transitions seen in the video were flashes of white light that were used to transition more static shots at 0:32-0:33 in the video.

Another visual technique used throughout the video is slow motion. The slow motion shots would made the commercial much more intense by allowing the viewer to see more detail than usual. These shots added to the pace of the video when it would switch between regular speed and slow motion.

In between the shots of the city there were very smooth and close up shots of the car and its logo. An interesting decision that the director made was to not show the whole car until nearly the end of the video because while they wanted to be clear that it was a commercial, the background story of Detroit was more important to present first before displaying the product. The close up shots of the car were also used to display some of its features including: the mirrors; the series of the car; its smooth body; it tires; its headlights and its interiors. These close up shots were effective for displaying the great features of the car and didn’t even require the voice over to explain them. All the shots of the car were smooth showing that a rig around the car involving image stabilizers was used. It was very important that the shots of the car were as smooth as possible to show the car would provide a smooth ride.

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