Visual Rewrite- DudeInTheBack

Second: 00:01

This video begins with a middle aged woman climbing up what I assume to be a mountain full of tobacco. It is brown, and detailed with lumps of tobacco all over. This could be a visual metaphor for overcoming tobacco use, since she is on her way to the top of the mountain of tobacco. Since this is an Ad for lung cancer screenings, and tobacco is usually associated with lung cancer, the metaphor could also mean that getting a lung cancer screening is the first step to overcoming tobacco use. The shot is very far out and It definitely was not shot on an actual mound of tobacco. It looks photo shopped,  and almost cartoonish.

At first glimpse, to start out a video with a woman climbing up a mountain makes me want to keep watching the video to see why she is doing it, or what she is doing. The Photoshop job looks very fake, and you can tell that it is not real. The shot kind of gives a cartoonish look, since she is oddly proportioned on the mountain. You would think she would be much smaller, since the shot of the mountains so far back. The mountain looks huge.


The video only shows the woman taking two steps on the mountain as she reaches to the top. What they failed to include was how she got on this mountain. Oddly placing her about 78% up the mountain. The viewer can assume that she climbed up the mountain base before the camera started rolling, rather than her randomly falling onto the top, or jumping up there. The woman gets on top with long strides, and looks like she is putting in some effort. This could add to the metaphoric meaning behind the video of overcoming tobacco as hard.

Luckily, since the camera view is far out, we can see some of the background which seems to be other piles, or mounds of presumably tobacco. This gives the viewer a sense of the environment she is in, and he depth of the shot. the sky is very foggy, which gives the atmosphere a dirty look. This is definitely what the director/editor of the video wanted to make it seem like. Having the fog represents smoke, portraying the image of what your lungs will have in it from smoking tobacco.


As the camera pans out, the shot moves farther, and farther away from the woman. This shot fully shows the depth of the setting, and how big the mound is. As I look closer into the mounds, It looks more like a pile of cigarettes, rather than tobacco. The editor of the video should have made the animation clearer on the mountain to make viewers not second guess their analysis. The woman is smiling, assuring the viewer that once you are at the top, the struggle, and hardship is over. The top of the mountain could represent the ling cancer screening, or overcoming tobacco use.

The message is unclear of why she is climbing the mountain. It obviously is a metaphor though, since this is a very metaphorical situation. I don’t believe their to be any actual mounds, let alone mountains of cigarettes anywhere in real life.

00:04 – 00:07

The video ends with a visual of the lung screener, along with the company’s website, associations, and sponsors. The main point of the ad is to promote their company, and this is made very clear by after showing the cool visual, they transition to a magazine picturesque visual.

The background is all white, making sure there is no background distraction from the important information. This use of a white background, and basic add quality gives this ending proof of the main reason for this commercial; to promote their company’s lung screening. What makes this feel more like an ad, and rather than a short film, is the popping up of the “Ad Council” logo in the bottom right corner appearing at the last second.


One thought on “Visual Rewrite- DudeInTheBack”

  1. You’re doing well here, Dude, combining description with analysis and deducing the director’s intentions.

    I’d like to suggest a couple of changes. You chose a very brief video (It was supposed to be a 30-second spot), but we can work with that. But I do want you to imagine the pure experience of seeing this video in its intended venue, as a TV spot, not a YouTube video. Seen that way, it would not include the text banner across the top identifying it as an Ad Council PSA about Lung Cancer.

    If you saw the first second without the text, would you think the mountain was comprised of tobacco? To me it looks more like a pile of sticks.

    So, if you could “forget” what you know about the ad and put yourself in the position of a naive first-time viewer, your analysis will be more realistic.

    A little background about the Ad Council. It’s a consortium of advertising agencies and professionals that donate their creative expertise to promote social well-being campaigns. Your conclusion that the video exists to serve a particular company is certainly reasonable, but the “company” it represents is the American Lung Association, another non-profit with largely benign, not commercial, motivations. Or maybe that’s just my naive take.

    One more thing to consider. My poetic analysis of the “mountain of cigarettes” is that it represents a lifetime of smoking, not just one cigarette, but all the cigarettes she’s smoked so far.

    If you want additional comments, or want me to see this post again after edits, just put it back into the Feedback Please category.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: