The story of the film is introduced by a nameless narrator who is telling the story of Adaline Bowman (Blake Lively) married to a construction worker who left her with her lively daughter, Flemming (Ellen Burstyn). One stormy night, she had a car accident and due to an interaction of hypothermia and high-voltage electrical shock that altered her chromosomes, Adaline remained 29 years old for eight decades.
Lee Toland Krieger’s choices of the technical and artistic elements of the film were arranged in a way that helped him to convey the theme of the film.One of the elements that translates the director’s vision to the actual film is the photography. The cinematography of the film was exquisite:the shots included different characteristics such as focuses and colors that gave the feeling of being transported back in time to the 1960s. The film is a modern day setting and had a vintage feel to it that made the cinematic experience more charming. The type of camera shots was used on purpose.
The director chooses the extreme long shot: taken from afar distance to establish the city where Adaline was moving to hide her secret from her friends, colleagues and from the police. It was used for the change of cities and to establishing the new one. The extreme close-up shots that focuses on a specific element, was specially use when Adaline was touching Flemming’s crimped hand; to show that the signs of aging did not show on Adaline due to her case. Also, to show the ring Adaline gave it to Flemming when she was younger as a memory from her while she was leaving her to move to another country. Furthermore, the close-up shots were used when Adaline and Ellis where in an intimate scene such as: the dinner in his house, when she was with him in his family’s house and when they were in the hospital while she was telling him the truth. Another element in the photography section is the camera angle.
The camera angle was used selectively in the establishing scenes; the bird eye view was used in the extreme long shot to show the city Adaline moved to, but most of the scene in the movie was shot in an eye level camera angle. The use of colors in the movie was symbolic. Cold colors (blue, green. indigo) were used in forest scenes, accident scene. The colors become darker specially in accident scene to show the torment and suffers Adaline faced in her accidents.
The warm colors( red, orange and yellow) were used in the New Year’s party, where she met Ellis to showcase the happiness and joy that surrounded them although she refused to talk to them and because Ellis did not knew about Adaline’s case that was an obstacle and tear them apart. Moreover, the use of black and white in flashbacks while showcasing Adaline’s past was also a way to show that she was remembering old actions happened from many decades. The type of lens used to shot this movie is a telephoto lens. In addition, the type of film stock was also a way that helped the director to convey the theme.