Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Evaluation- Question Two: How does your media product represent particular social groups?

Gina played the killer in our opening film sequence. The killer costumes consists of all black clothing such as boots, hat, mac, leather gloves and trousers. Using one tone creates a sinister appearance which influences the audience into believing they are going to cause the changes within the plot. Compared to V, the mysterious anarchist vigilante and freedom fighter from V for Vendetta who also appears wearing all black clothing including boots, long cloak, leather gloves and body wear for protection again all who flee to kill him. It is well know that the character V doesn't remove his mask (apart from once in the comic story at Surridge's request) therefore his identity remains anonymous. His name "V" is also a code name within the film and continues to withhold his identity. At first V is recognised as the villain due to his past however throughout the film it becomes clear his plan would change Britain for the best, when his life ends, so does his stereotype of being a villain. The killer in our piece is also undoubted to known as a villain just from the appearance alone but his role in the film is to kill Lucy (the main girl). Although, unlike V, the killer will always remain a villain because he is a cold hearted killer. V who had copied Guy Fawkes' costume remains in 15th style using knives instead of guns. However, the killer in our opening piece is post modern using a guy which is quick and painful. Similar to V, our killer uses a hat to hide his identity and also remain a shifty look to his appearance.

Our killer is also similarly dressed to Commissioner James Gordon from the Batman series who always appearing in darkly dressed clothing and weapon of choice, a gun. Our killer is a professional who will have knowledge on how not to get caught. Much like James Gordon he works alone and doesn't want other to pull him down. However, Gordon fights crime for a living while our killer creates destruction and appreciates people committing crime. Gordon is open about his appearance as he represents a heroic figure in Gotham City but our killer remain anonymous to remain a threat to all of those who walk in his path.

All the characters featured in this question are strong minded and are determined to fight issues that come in their way by weaponry. They also use their weapons for comfort because they also feel threatened by others that could assassinate them. They have the classical stereotype of testosterone poisoning believing the more masculine they appear, the more negative traits they would have.

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Evaluation- Question Six: What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product?

we used a range of equipment/software in order to create our final AS piece.

Blogger.com is used to keep record of each individuals research, techniques and evaluation.

Dafont.com is a uncopyrighted website where you can download different types of typography for free that you can then apply to your film piece. We chose anonymous clipping.

Facebook.com and Myspace.com are both social networking sites in which I used to conduct my audience research as it is quicker than speaking to each individual personally. It was also a fast way of collecting critical comments on our final AS piece. Films are also advertised via the internet because it is cheap advertising and effective due to the large number of people who have access to it.

Google.co.uk is a search engine which can be used in numerous ways. I used this to collect images, watch videos and gain access to other information needed for our piece.

Youtube.com helped us begin my research into film openings so I could analyse them. It also became of great help when finding a cheap way to create characters costumes/make up.

Freesound.org is a uncopyrighted music website where we downloaded various sounds to create a soundtrack using garage band.

Garage Band is the software we used to create three soundtracks for our film piece. They have a selection of clips already available however you can import more via itunes.

Tripods help keep the camera steady whilst filming to keep a professional look. The tripods size can be adjusted. We used tripods in our piece however we were limited on space at some points such as the shot from inside the car therefore we had to use the camera by hand. We used the camera hand held for the coffin scene for extra distortion.

Imovie was the software we used on the macs to edit and produce our piece in post-production. You can change/add sounds and adjust the video effects on each clip individually.

Windows Movie Maker was an easy way to create videos with a lot of information and can contain videos/photos along the narration.

Paint was used to crop photos so I could use them in windows movie maker or on my blog.

Sony Camcorder was used to record our piece and even create videos like health and safety issues. Easy to use equipment that was spacious.

Slr Camera used to capture characters costume and make up etc.

By spending numerous amounts of time using each piece of software/equipment I can now confidently say I know how to use everything in the list above. I mostly enjoyed working on garage band where I can now understand on how to change the tempo of music, crop music and change the pace in which it plays. Using Blogger is an efficient way of keeping track of what you have done to get to the final AS piece. When I was using Imovie I learnt on about the clips and audio and how everything can be cropped, cut, change colour and matched with audio I made from garage band

Friday, 26 March 2010



Tori Douglas- "it's actually really good :| i like the start bit where it's someone sat outside & i like it how you linked the scenes together when you closed the curtains. & the bit where you're in the coffin looks really good:| proper" effective"

Sam Marsh- "Wow. That's ridiculously good! It looks professional from start to end I love the music, make up, costumes. The whole fact it looks like a professionally done piece is stunning. Well done you guys!! xx"

Joseff Revill- "WOW! That was pretty awesome guys, top job on creating the atmosphere with the right sound score, dim lighting and the tapping on the car wheel is really eerie and helps draw the audience in, really good, i shall give it 5 revels out of 5 and my own personal HURRAY!"

Callum Cook- "That was brilliant XD The neck crack bit was freaky lols, i really liked it, Id give it my own personal hurray!"

Emily Cross- "The music is chilling and goes very well with the scenes, the shots are very different lengths which shows variety in the video. The make up and imagery is life like and the blood on the face is realistic, also the plain white shirt for the pjs gives the sense of an innocent victim. Very good Video"

Boyce Pratt- "totally spooky"

Abigail Wells- "it was really good, good acting and use of sound and camera shots, really worked well together :) and the scene with the black and white pictures was really dramtic and captured what it was about"

Jenni-Leigh Seaton- "i <3ed>

Jenna Thomas- "media blog is amazing babe :O you;ve done really well"

Editing- Creating the Soundtrack using Garage Band;

Video showing some of the sounds used on our final piece.

Editing- iMovie;

Imovie is the software used to edit our video into the final cut. The simple layout allows you to import music, sounds and video to apply to your video. Imovie can even change the presentation of your videos/images by changing the adjustments. The advantages of using Imovie means you can crop and delete audio/video by your demand. I found Imovie easy to use apart from one problem found with audio on on selection of the film. However this was easily resolved by separating the audio from that part. Imovie involves making new projects and then editing the video to your standard.

Editing- Garage Band;

Garage Band allows you to create unique sounds either to be applied to a film piece or simply to record a song. There are a range of music available and is listed into different genre which makes it easier to look for when you have a certain piece in mind. You can also import your own music which can be downloaded from sites such as www.freesound.org. From this piece of software, I then created 3 separate soundtracks for the film opening. Most of the soundtracks was a mixture of heavy beats, eerie tones and built up to the peak parts which matched parallel with actions within the piece.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Images & Effects;

By using Adobe Photoshop you can adjust photo to your needs. There are a number of techniques you can use to change photos and these are some examples:

Vignetting; this technique often referred to as "fish eye lens" creates the illusion of what someone sees through their eyes. At post-production we used this idea with the webcam shot then the audience are seeing the female character from the stalkers point of view.

Posterize; Using this approach makes the image look distorted but artistically. You can change the strengths of Posterizing and if this image was stronger the picture would have a a smudging effect. Researching all different photo editing helped the group decide what would suit the montage coffin scene.

Invent; Changing a photo from positive to negative looks like the one posted above. Inventing gives the photo an eerie look. However, the outcome of the image depends on the depth and brightness surrounding it. This is the reason why Inventing was only used very briefly whilst editing because the use of bright lights during the coffin scene resulted in the female character barely visible.

Black and White; used mostly in Film Noir, Black and White makes the image look older than actually dated. This is a good technique when used to deceive an audience during the time scale of the opening piece.

These techniques can also be used on Imovie therefore practising on photoshop was great practice before the editing sessions began.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Typography- Researching Existing Fonts;

Typography- Existing Film Titles;

During filming we researched different film typography and compared them to their given genre.
This helped our group visualise how we wanted our film titles and credits to look like.

TOY STORY (1995)

This title is bold because of the heroic primary colours used to make it stand out. Similar to superheroes such as superman and wonder women, the colours red, yellow and blue represent fun and a happy ending. Behind the title is the background full of clouds which show the film can take you anywhere and escapism is guaranteed. Even the title "Toy Story" identifies that the films target audience is children because their daily life is based around bringing toys to life as entertainment.

The Bourne Identity (2002)

The Bourne Identity title shows straight away that the film is based around one character. Jason Bourne is shown with serious facial expressions next to screen shots of the film where he appears to be violently fighting another character. Bourne has been circled as a target on the title representing that the film could be based around someone hunting Jason Bourne however the reason isn't revealed. This is already triggering an enigma and gets the audience involved. Ironically even though the colours used (yellow and blue) are supposedly heroic it is unable to determine what side his character represents. The white, bold title stands out from its dark background making the target audience see his role in the film is crucial to the plot.

Star Wars: Episode Three - Revenge of the Sith (2005)

The audience can guess the genre of Sci-fi due to the out of space background with the dark galaxy and endless stars. Using Roman numerals to show which episode this Star Wars film is ranked, it is clear that this film is as big as space luring audiences to think this could be "out of this world". Each title is in a different colour such as "revenge of the sith" is a mix between red and white to represent heaven and hell showing there is a fine line between evil and good. The title enrols the plot without the audience noticing at first. "Star Wars" in gold implies the film is only of good quality, even by the shiny, capital writing. Within "Star Wars" the waves of sand suggest the film may flashback to prequels and sequels to draw the film together as a whole. This is a good tactic to attract the old and new generation fans of the world-wide known franchise.

Pulp Fiction (1994)

The simple idea of a black background and bold titles enforces an audience to make up their own plot. The title alone uses bright and bold colours to attract people but even the name "pulp fiction" forces people to think what the film may be about. Using the plain black background makes the title look authentic and comic.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007)

The title is almost hidden by using all of the same colour but just changing the brightness and contrast between the background and the title. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix appears in front of clouds to suggest the film is forever changing similar to the weather. Harry Potter also has a scar in the shape of a lightening bolt which is included in the typography when you look directly at the letter P. Each individual letter of "Harry Potter" has sharp edges implying what his character may be like in the film. The dark use of colour represent the darkness and sin within the film.

Final Destination (2000)

Final Destination uses small lettering to reassure the enigma of the film is revealed in small steps up to the big finale. It is believe that once we die we go to heaven and by using the stars as a background it suggest this film already ends in tragedy. The title "Final Destination" is distorted and uses white font to look similar to the stars. The background and title connote each other because they both show the film will be tragic due to the destination being death.

Clash of the Titans (2010)

Clash of the Titans uses strong gold bold typography to connote the films plot which shows the fight between Zeus and Hades. The mixes of browns in the background imply the fight will be dark and sinister involving violence from the clouds. The typography uses straight lines in the font to put across how strong the titans are within the story. Gold titles imply this film is worth seeing because of its quality.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Titles- For Team Members;

Deciding the group roles: We allocated TWO title each, but we all took part in each role.

Our main titles include:

In addition, we used these as further information for our audiences:

we also acknowledge outside advantages such as dafont.com, freesound.org and Pamela Prentiss-Harrisson for her poem.

Producer- Gina Eales
Director- Joseph Ryan
Music- Victoria Parker
Sound- Freesound.org
Lighting - Joseph Ryan
Costume + Make-up- Gina Eales
Editing-Victoria Parker
Poem By Pamela Prentiss-Harrison*

*in the final editing stages we didn't use the poem therefore her title was removed.

In the lastest developments films such as Batman: The Dark Knight (2008) and Clash of the Titans (2010) don't display the title of the film until it has ended. However, because the task is only a film opening we included the title of our film.

Opening Credits;

Final checks on our AS media piece were observed by Nanette (our media teacher). The only feedback she gave was an improvement on the opening credits because they were ordered incorrectly. Opening credits usually start from the less important roles and end with the important information towards the ending of the opening sequences.

Deciding the title order: Whilst browsing wikipedia, I also looked into films that parallel our own conventions. I chose two films- Panic Room (2002) and Taxi Driver (1976)http://artofthetitle2.com/media/film/70s/taxi_driver.mov

After comparing our roles to the list suggested on Wikipedia we rearrange the order of our opening credits.

Starting with the production company, the actors involved then the title of the film and finally the name of the director. Panic Room builds up the title sequence right through to the end where only one director can be listed which is orders from The Directors Guild of America. However, in rare cases such as death in mid-production there are exceptions.

Starting with the production company, then the title of the film, followed by the actors involved and finally the listed director.

Both film openings begin with the production company because the audience can instantly recognise what other films that company may have produced therefore are impressed. However, the listing of actors, writers and title of the film vary depending on what may attract an audience to the film more e.g. A famous actor such as Robert Pattinson from Twilight has a large fan base therefore the film company would use this to their advantage as a advertising tactic. In addition both films use one directors name at the end of the opening credits.

It is important that we use a common order which follows these two films for advertising tactics to attract our target audiences.

Friday, 19 March 2010

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

On Location & Characters Costumes;

This video shows the characters costumes and our research influence on how we created them. All four character:
  • Lucy (the girl),
  • Her alter-ego (the coffin girl)
  • The stalker
  • The killer
were discussed in forms of stereotypes and what effect they have given. We also discussed the purpose of the stalkers blackboard which created an enigma for the beginning of the film.

Monday, 15 March 2010

Film Legistrations- Weapons;

Since the rise in gun crime within the 21st century, the police and the BBFC have become more intense when giving films their certification. Within the last 10 years films released have been changed once they are distributed on DVD due to the audience response and complaints. Such as the recent Batman: The Dark Knight (2008) which features violence scenes using knives therefore due to public demand and current coverage on the news the film was classified as a "12A". The explicit detail of violence changes the certification- the more graphic, the higher the rating.

Our film opening has the medium/high risk of violence because of the girl being faced at gun point and being buried in a coffin. We need to over look our piece to make sure it suits our target audience of 15+ and doesn't move into the 18 certification category.

I analysed different films which have violence within them to devise a violence scale to rate films:

LOW RISK- Weapons appear to be pretend, for fun and unloaded.
MEDIUM RISK- Weapons appear to be loaded, and fired however the victim is not injured or visible.
HIGH RISK-Weapons are loaded, been fired and injuries or death are apparent.

Team members and their roles;

Our group is made up by three people:

Joseph Ryan (stalker, editor, director)
Gina Eales (killer, editor, director)
Victoria Pratt (Parker) (Lucy, editor, director

When filming our film piece, we all wanted to experience the different equipment. Therefore we played different parts when scenes where being filmed. Such as the coffin scene Victoria acted so Joe and Gina could be co-directors. But on the final part of the opening where Joe plays the stalker, Victoria had the chance to film since she plays the main character and this was her only chance.

Film Title Development;

When researching into film names we looked into the typical conventions within our film piece.
  • stalker
  • death
  • gun
  • sense of the unknown
  • murder
  • jealously

As a group, we then related these conventions to the words used to describe them. For example,the word "stalker" is usually described as an obsession or illusion. Therefore when looked up these words into the thesaurus and selected the ones we felt would suit our target audience.

Paramnesia and Chimera dominate the pie chart and so we continued to research into the two most popular selections.

Chimera is the term used for a fanciful mental illusion or fabrication.

Paramnesia is the term used for a distortion of a memory in which fantasy and objective experience are confused.

Paramnesia is the perfect candidate for our piece of film because the definition sums up the whole plot. Paramnesia is also not in the English dictionary but is an American term which could suggest the film is mainstream rather than niche.

Sunday, 14 March 2010


In our film opening there will be little or no script as it is controlled by a voice over which will be a selected poem from the Internet (not copyrighted). The poem will add to the eerie atmosphere and create a dramatic effect that will build upon the opening. The slight script of begging as the girl pleads for her life will only be quotes like "please don't", "stop" and "don't do this". At the end of the opening (also known as the beginning of the film) the stalker repeats "she picked her finger upon my rose" over and over until the end of the clip to empathize his love for her.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Prop List;

Prop Lists; Here is a list of props we will be using throughout our media piece. The list will keep our group organised when the day of filming finally begins

Bedroom Scene
  • Laptop
  • Bed
  • Fishtank (artificial lighting)
  • Curtains
  • Black sheet (incase its not dark enough to film
  • Gun

Costumes required for bedroom scene

Girl: White shirt, white shorts, natural look

Killer: Black trench coat, black bowling hat, black boots, black leather gloves.

Coffin Scene

  • Coffin
  • Cobwebs and Netting
  • Lighting equipment (artificial lighting)
  • Black sheet

Costumes required for coffin scene

Girl: Black leggings, Black top, Black nails, Big hair, Spider ring.

Outside Scene

  • Car
  • Lampost
  • Digital Camera

Costumes required for outside scene

Stalker: Black leather-look jacket, Jeans, t-shirt, trainers.

Monday, 8 March 2010

Weather and Shooting Schedule;

As the plan states the group and I begin filming for our film coursework tomorrow and I am rather excited to be putting all the groups and my ideas together and finally bring them to life.

Shooting Schedule; This allows us to allocate time in order to keep on track and complete the piece without any rush.

Our filming days are:
Tuesday 9th March 2010
Friday 12th March 2010
Saturday 13th March 2010
Tuesday 9th March Schedule
15.00-16.00: Film the ending of the film (storyboard shots 16-18).
16.00-16.45: Set up film sets (coffin scene, bedroom scene etc).
16.45-17.00: Team meeting.
17.00-18.00: Experiment with lighting for coffin scene, darkness in bedroom scene.
18.00-18.15: Review what has been filmed.
18:15: End of Day One filming.
Friday 12th March Schedule
15.00-16.00: Costume design and set up of film sets (take photographs to form a photo album of process).
16.00-17.00: video on how to use the camera and other equipment used.
17.00-18.00: BREAK/Develop voice over poem and brainstorm a film name.
18.00-18.30: Film on health and safety.
18.30-19.30: Dark Scenes being filmed. Outside then Bedroom scene.
19.30-20.00: Prepare for coffin scene.
20.00-21.00: Coffin Scene filmed.
21:00: End of Day Two filming.
Saturday 13th March Schedule
An extra day has been added just incase the schedule changes due to weather, equipment or adjustments in team members. If any of these issues arise then we can film the parts left out on Saturday.

Weather; The weather is important to our filming because some of our scenes require filming outside. Some weathers such as snow, wind, ice or rain are not permanent therefore the schedule may have to change if these condition become a problem. After looking on www.bbc.co.uk I found the weather forecast for the next 5 days. The light rain may benefit our film because it adds to the dark and dreary atmosphere however we would need to film all the scenes in that time slot so we can be sure the weather remains the same.

Friday, 5 March 2010

Character Recreations;

For further planning into our horror/thriller opening part of the ideas was to look into costume and make up ideas. I selected 6 characters for my group to recreate so we could gather ideas for our own characters. The typical characters for horror/thriller films are innocent females, cold-hearted males, corrupted children and suspicious serial killers. Here are some of our creations:

Thursday, 4 March 2010

Filming Locations;

For each initial idea I have put together a video featuring photos of possible filming locations and explained their advantages/disadvantages.

Monday, 22 February 2010

Gantt Chart;

As we come closer to the filming stages my group devised a week-by-week chart in order to keep on the tight schedule and make sure we include everything needed on our blogs.

Week Beginning:
22 Feb- Keep blog updated, finish audience research (questionnaires), storyboards, voice record opinions on intial idea
1st Mar-Finish storyboards, sounds, typography, lighting, scripts, recreations of characters from exsisting horror/thrillers, shooting schedule
8th Mar- Filming, video diary of filming (podcast), weather updates, changes in storyboard and schedule
15th Mar-Editing stages, final blog touches
29th Mar-5th Apr- HALF TERM finishing blog, guides on how to use macs, cameras and how to edit.
12th Apr- Editing
19th Apr- Evaluation
26th Apr- Evaluation

Initial Ideas;

In order to decide what initial idea was best our group analysed the results from the audience research (questionnaires and interviews), advantages and disadvantages of filming locations and additional information such as props, production rules and health and safety. We then decided Idea One was more appropriate and had more potential because I personally visualised the process and the post-production I saw success then communicated this thought to the group. Idea Two and Idea Three were very brief but don't have the opportunity to expand and would be very short pieces of film. The timing of the final film opening piece should aim to be a minimum 1 minute and maximum 2 minutes.

Planning Outline for Final Piece
Before drawing up out storyboards our group sat down and decided step-by-step what would happen within the film opening. In chronological order the story follows as:

  • Long shot of the moon with an voice over of a poem by a little girl, the long shot then pans to the car.
  • The shot cuts to inside the car with an over the shoulder shot of the stalker taking/looking at photos. This is also a point of view shot of the stalker watching the girl close her curtains.
  • Cuts to medium shot of girl in her bedroom preparing for sleep as she walks away from her window unaware of the man outside.
  • Close up of web-cam from laptop.
  • Point of view shot from web-cam (edited in final process to look from web-cam) shows she's being watched.
  • Girl gets into bed and zooms into her eyes. The shot is then graphic matched.
  • Shows girl in her nightmare in a coffin.
  • Cuts back to reality where girl is restless in bed.
  • Cuts back to coffin as she expresses her emotions by winking with evil laughter whilst coming out of the coffin towards the camera. But then collapses back into coffin, she is now dead.
  • Eyes are then graphic matched when she comes out of the nightmare, the girl is in bed when her eyes suddenly open (this is to thrill then audience).
  • Girls actions followed with tracking and match on action shots as she sits up in bed. The non-diegetic sounds of the poem has now ended.
  • A gun is then put to the girls head, the gunman's identity is hidden and only his hand with the gun can be seen.
  • Girl begins to protest and beg for mercy.
  • Cuts to black frame parallel to the gun shot.
  • 2nd gun shot and title appear within a sequence of each other.
  • An over the shoulder shot shows the stalker picking up a camera.
  • Shows half the LCD screen of camera and man's face.
  • The LCD screen shows a picture of the girl.
  • Zooms into the LCD screen photo then juxtaposes the photo into reality.

Initial Ideas;

Idea One
  • A girl in her bedroom suffers from a nightmare.
  • Flashbacks and match on action shots to show suffering.
  • Stalker effect from someone watching over her.
  • The scene in bedroom switches between reality and abnormality- It is unable to determine which is which.
  • Voice over(possible poem) suggests eerie atmosphere and begins to untangle the story.
  • Possible panning shot of creepy toys however this may not be included due to the age of the audience.
  • A number of locations and different time setting connotes to confuse audiences and juxtapose.
Idea Two
  • Main character is a male.
  • Voice over of character.
  • Characters running (diegetic) takes over voice over (non-diegetic) to produce the sounds of panic.
  • Running will take place in an urban location.
  • Running climaxes as he arrives at a shop to get milk- this creates false panic for audience, gives thrill.
  • An event happens to move the story along into the next scene.
  • Dark, evening setting.
Idea Three
  • Garage setting in an urban location.
  • Use of speeding up on editing e.g. fast paced walking.
  • Male character with baseball bat doing tricks with strong sounds to go with the blows as he swings it around. This sets an enigma.
  • Dark, evening setting.

Intial Ideas;

Thursday, 11 February 2010

Camera Experiments;

The advantages in media technology have allowed us to use gadgets such as a camera wheel which looks similar to a steering wheel in a car. This gadget keeps the camera steady so shots like panning and tracking can remain clear. In this video we demonstrated these shots by shooting a panning and tracking shots.

Our Examples are:

  • Panning the scenery which could be used as an establishing shot
  • Tracking shot of the boy running
  • Point of view/tracking shot of someone getting up from off the ground and then panning the camera to suggest the location.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Audience Research- Questionnaires;

Further research into audience reception of thriller films I decided to interview 20 people of different age ranges using a questionnaire.
1. What is your age?
2. Which media products promotes films to you?
3. Do you think most mainstream horror/thriller films have similar plots and outcomes?
4. Do low budget films create a unique outcome compared to mainstream films
5. Does the name of the film influence you to go and watch it
6. What is your favourite sub-genre of thriller?
7. Can you usually predict the outcome of the film due to the stereotypical conventions
8. In your opinion, do you think thrillers end in tragedy
9. Have you heard of Film Noir?

Question One was basically to ask what range of people are participating in my survey. This shows that we arrange a similar amount of people from different age ranges to collect rich data of opinions on the questions we have selected.

Question Two was to find what type of advertising was most eye catching to promote a film. The pie chart shows the majority are influenced by trailers and I think this is because they can be visually brilliant. Trailers only show the exciting moment in the film advertised so they can attract their target audiences to consider watching it at their local cinema. One result which I found disappointing was the lack of promotion through Internet/social networking. Considering the numerous amount of people using websites such as http://www.facebook.com/ and http://www.twitter.com/ I would of thought most advertisement (and because it is cheaper) would of been done through this.

Question Three shows that mainstream films are more likely to all have similar conventions unlike niche films. This is something we have to take into consideration when deciding who should market our film opening.

*spelling mistake on graph: outcoe is suppose to say outcome.
Question Four tells us low budget films have different responses to those with large Hollywood budgets. This is because when working on a budget actors, setting and props have to be taken into consideration in pre-production due to money issues. Although it has been proven that even niche films can succeed across the globe such as Slumdog Millionaire winning 8 Oscars and another 100 wins elsewhere.

Question Five shows that before the film trailer is even seen by an audience the majority are influence just by the title. In order to be successful with this tactic my group must come up with a unique name to influence our target audience to consider watching this film. To do this we must brainstorm different ideas about how our film opening would be percieved.

Question Six shows the popularity of genres such as crime and action. Our genre thriller will be using a crime storyline however only little action is weaved into the opening. I think the crime genre is a good choice because it involves many twists in the plot which will make our opening more interesting to the target audience

Question Seven shows that even though stereotypical conventions are known internationally when involved in films that are unpredictable. It would be useful to change the convention and make them unique to what they have originally be branded as.

Question Eight implies that people will be surprised if thriller ends in tradegy therefore as part of our film opening we could show tradegy to make our audience want to find out how the storyline got to that point.
Question Nine shows that our participants haven't heard of Film Noir and this could still benefit our film opening if we included it. Using conventions of Film Noir would create an interesting reaction to our audience as they will experience something never seen to them before.

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Audience Research- Interviews;

After research into film certification, we decided to focus our attention on possible target audiences. In order to do this we selected important questions and interviewed people from a range of ages:

  • Under 15
  • 16-25
  • 26+
Under 15

In the under 15 interview it was interesting to find that the person wasn't inparticularly interested in horror/thriller films and only had a brief knowledge of their conventions. This is a direct result of horror/thriller films usually being in the older film certification such as 12A, 15 and 18 due to the graphical violence and language.


In the interview with a male from the age range 16-25 I found that he had been more aware of thriller/horror film knowledge due to personal interests. They have been aware of horror film conventions and the stereotypes involved in the making.

26+ female + male interviews

These separate interviews with female and male participants show they are aware of thriller/horror films but not the stereotypes involved. All interviews show they don't favour the horror/thriller genre but are aware of films that are of the genre.

Sunday, 7 February 2010

Film Noir;

The term Film Noir is French for "Black Film" and was highly popular in the 1940s and 1950s. Film Noir is a posh, cinematic term used for stylish Hollywood films which surrounded the crime genre. They often had sexual motivations and cynical attitudes which drew the audience into this film movement. The small black-and-white visual style which made films such as Double Indemnity (1944) successful because French critics admired the dark mise-en-scene, editing and sounds among them. The time of Film Noir was already a dark and sinister decade due to World War II which was then reflected among the films with loss of innocence, being under threat, fear, bleak outlooks and paranoia. These universal themes made the films popular because people could understand the characters and their emotions. There are rarely any optimistic endings in Film Noir because of the relations to reality.

Film Noir is not a genre, but a film movement which had been inspired by the most unusual and upsetting time of history, World War II. This classical period was often based around a hard-hearted and shallow male character such as Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca (1942) who encounter beautiful, seductive women across his path. The female character usually used her alluring looks to manipulate the male into become the guy to take the fall, this usually follows with a murder. The plot then comes across a betrayal or double-cross which frequently results in the female characters death as well as her hero's. During World War II women became more independent and earned a living because they took over the male dominated job as they fought in the war. In result to this, women within films suffered which made reality seem much happier with freedom even in the certain circumstances.

Saturday, 6 February 2010

The Usual Suspects- Defining Thriller;

Definition of Thriller Genre: Thrillers have the job of being able to thrill and confuse an audience, if this is unsuccessful then the film has not followed the characteristics of a Thriller and been ineffective. Thrillers often overlap and become part of sub-genres most likely mystery-thriller or horror-thriller. The genre also involves fast paced plots, frequent action, notable heroes and villains who are advantaging equipped with weaponry.

The Usual Suspects was directed by Bryan Singer in 1995 and written by Christopher McQuarrie. The plot involves a twist which engages the audience in working out or solving an enigma but the audience finds the final moments of the film more clear when the story unravels. As The Usual Suspects is a crime mystery thriller the police where majority involved in the storyline and became the centre focus of the film. Thriller often over cross other genres most likely mysteries, crime and action to wider the audiences interests and expand their marketable strategy. The identity of the villain is usually known from the beginning of the film but only revealed and made clear at the end. The villain in The Usual Suspects is played by Kevin Spacey who takes on duo characters Roger Kint and Keyser Soze. The two separate characters are played off each other and even have different effect on people such as Roger Kint who is a disabled character and seen as the weaker member of the usual suspects. On the other hand, Keyser Soze is compared to the devil, an evil mastermind who remains a mystery to those who continue his legendary story.
Death is most likely to be written into the plot of most film genres because it creates an emotional atmosphere for the film to have universal meanings which can relate to the audiences real life. In thrillers there is always death but the plot doesn't identify the killer at the time and the deaths are mostly always cold blooded. There is a considerable difference between the deaths in horror and thriller films because horror is an extension onto thrillers because they are more graphical and there main motif is death. However, the killings in thrillers are distance and less graphic usually in result of a large scale criminal activity taking place. All in all thrillers maintain the mystery of the killer right up till the very end and in majority of the films the police find the killer is right under their noses.
The use of stereotypes in thrillers connotes the villain as they come out of their shells and hold an unreliable first hand account of the plot and lie to cover their tracks. The easy route of playing with stereotypes means anyone can create an new identity and villains do this to stay clear of any conviction. The Usual Suspects deals with time-shifts to keep the audience on the edge of their seats so they must pay attention in order to figure out who the killer is. The story is told in flashbacks which has a great effect on confusing the audience on who the killer is because each flashback changes the point of view. The post-modern films plays around with conventions and usually have a big impact on the way thrillers are written. Villains suggest their tactic in little hints across the film but always remain a coldness and lack of humanity surrounding the killer. This explains why the main motif in The Usual Suspects is to fool other characters and the audience with clever planning.

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Production Rules;

  1. Avoid illegal substances such as cigarettes, alcohol and drugs.
  2. Avoid use of self transport (e.g. cars, mopeds) as you may cause distractions affecting health and safety.
  3. Foul language is inappropiate for your AS production.
  4. Nudity is also inappropiate for your AS production.
  5. Your media production doesn't exempt the law therefore if abused the police will be involved.
  6. Don't misuse the equipment. Breakages will be paid for by the student responsible.
  7. When filming in outdoor spaces be aware that the public must be asked to be filmed. Only include them in your production if consent has been given.
  8. In specific public places permission must be acquired off your local council.
  9. Copyrighted sounds/products must not be used in your production due to copyright theft.
  10. As long as you follow the rules, production will be fun :)

Monday, 1 February 2010

Film Certification;

Film certifcation is used to restrict certain age groups from being exposed and harmed by some scenes shown in films and television shows. The British Broadcast of Film Classifaction are an independent company who advise and keep the public informed about what is contained within films. The www.bbfc.co.uk website keeps up-to-date informations about the guidelines of films and how they make decisions about classification. The BBFC not only rate films, but also work with television shows, music videos and video games.


Universal films also known as U are reccommended as suitable for all ages (mainly four years and over) because sometimes its unable to determine what may upset a child therefore they restrict any violence, substance abuse, language and threat which could offend any child. U films also follow positive moral values such as education is important and being polite is a must etc.
Most disney films are U & PG because they provide moral values of helping others and making the right decisions. Disney focuses on children because their company surrounds children's happiness.


PG stands for Parental Guidance which allows general viewing however some scene may be unsuitable for young children who are sensitive. Parents are advised to view the film before allowing their children to watch it and if they have any concerns PG should not harm children aged 8 and over.


12A is short for 12 years and over, usually known as general viewing however maybe unsuitable for children under this age. 12A/12 work in the exactly same manner where children 12 and over can watch the film unaccompanied. However, if children under 12 want to view the film they will need an adult to supervise and decide whether the explicit detail will cause harm from the material contained.
  • 12: only used on Video/DVD releases due to the renting and buying guidelines
  • 12A: only used on cinema releases


15 is the classification used to explain no one under the age of 15 may buy, view or rent this film due to the content.


18 is the age of adulthood, so its only correct when it's only suitable for adults. 18 is the legal age for alcohol, marriage and sex shops therefore it can be used in these films without cause any harm to the viewers.


R rated films are most likely found in sex shops or in specially licensed cinema BUT must only be brought, rented or viewed by a person over the age of 18. These are thoroughly monitored due to the explicit detail . R-18 films are not supplied by mail order. A majority of R18 films are pornography.

Friday, 29 January 2010

Close Analysis of Film Opening- The Dark Knight;

The Dark Knight
Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Written by: Jonathan Nolan & Christopher Nolan
Staring: Christan Bale, Michael Caine, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart
Genre: Action, Crime, Drama, Thriller
Certification: 15
  • The dark, blue/black clouds correlate with the title of the film, "The Dark Knight" to suggest that the title is shown at night time due to the darkness effect. The clouds zoom to form the Batman logo and this then becomes clear why they decided to film the title sequence in the darkness of time. Also, Batman has always appeared to be a sinister character in The Dark Knights given plot therefore the choice of colors connote this.
  • The cut zoom into the city defines the location of the film and also suggest the Gotham city is full of crime due to the given name which is similar to Gothic. In result this implies the perfect setting for the enigma to begin.
  • The zoom into the mirrored building shows no reflection which implies there could be no hope for the city.
  • The first showing of violence is the windows exploding. The broken glass is small but lethal and could be used as weapons which could show the film is bound to break laws and be full of action scenes.
  • The shot then cuts to medium close ups of characters in masks. The childish form of identity is ironic because they are shown to be holding guns. Children are usually seen as sweet and innocent but The Dark Knight destroys this stereotype and takes a new role to make audience believe that anyone can be evil. The masks are different clown faces.
  • In the banks building, the shot cuts to a high-angled shot of two clown characters dealing with weaponry. These characters are hiding behind childish masks to suggest they wont do no harm but there given guns makes the audience feel uneasy and prepares them for any violent scenes ahead.
  • The scene juxtaposes with a cut to the lower ground outside where one character is filmed from behind holding his mask in his left hand and reveals his identity with no hesitation. The broad shoulder tell us that the character is male and his greasy, slick hair and big bag stereotype him as a typical bank robber. The shot is then zoomed in to gather extra detail of the character.
  • The zoom focuses on the mask of the single character which shows he isnt wearing it due to the significance that his identity doesnt involve a mask and maybe his indentity will be revealed further into the plot.
  • The pace of the opening building up quickly once the villians car turns up and the non-diegetic music starts with an upbeat, heavy tone. The single character puts his mask on, gets in the door and the robbery begins. We know this because the constant reminders of masks, slammed doors and quick pace of shots.
  • The medium shot cuts to juxapose the the two clown characters and car in different places. This highlights the planning of the robbery and that it was well planned in order to be successful. A tracking shot follows the two clowns down the zip wire then intakes a high angled shot of the busy city which makes the scene more intense because of the close call situation the villains have put themselves in.
  • The shot then cuts to the clowns within the car and a medium close up of the clowns conversation puts the other clown out of focus's either to suggest he isn't important or throwing the audience off so he can reappear as a significant character.
  • The robbers are ALL wearing clown masks however they all have different emotions on them and create an individual effect which suggests "every man for themselves". This saying unravels after the shot cuts to upon the rooftop where talk of the Joker causes one clown to shoot the other in order to make more money in the pot. The roof is the high point avaliable on location and the sorting through weapon gives that extra boost of power to the villains.
  • The sound bridge is continued as the scene continues with its montage of shots to the lower ground. The music has a fast pace beat which forces the robbery to its peak and makes the audience be on the edge of their seats as they continue to attempt to unravel the indentities of the clowns.
  • The shot then cuts to pans from outside the bank and inside to follow the characters every movement and grasp the other characters reactions to the situation they were unaware of. Inside the bank is the first time we get a point of view shot from a banker to show the victims side of the story. This helps viewer understand the feelings and actions from people other than the villians.
  • The zoom out, tracking shot of the mayhem within the building builds pace into the scene and continues to help the scene peak to its enigma. The diegetic sounds of screams from the innocent characters puts pressure onto the villians showing their plan is working but they may be caught due to the attention risen by the screams.
  • The montage of shots makes sequence faster and parallels actions within the film.
  • Innocent characters hidden under the tables makes the audience see they are insecure and feel terroised. These actions make the audience see both sides of the story and develops emotions to feel sorry for the innocent.
  • A long shot of the bank shows one clown aggressively pulling a banker over the counter. This clown is showing authority and showing aggravation to scare the victims who surround him.
  • However, the victims in this scene fight back such as an over shoulder shot of a blonde, female banker shouting "NO" to one of the clown to take a brave stand against giving them their desire (money). These actions make the shot more intense because its unable to determine how the clowns may react to this act of rebellion.
  • The shot cuts to the roof where the clowns are shown to be clever by hacking the electricity in order to make the banks vaults easier to rob. This is clever and classic action of robbers and is also a sign of determination to shown that no matter what education you have you still can fall into the wrong hands of the law.
  • At the same moment where the two robbers were cutting the electricity, the over the shoulder shot shows a clown drawing a gun to the electrician robbers head but still continuing normal conversation whilst the electrician robber is unaware he is about to be killed. This action shows theres nothing normal in illegal activity and friend is a word that doesn't exist in criminal activity.
  • The music by now is much heavier as the pressure and tension rises as the bank robbery gets deeper and more intense. The plot thickens and one brave banker prepare his gun to fight back which shows pride and concludes the scene into a war between victims and villains rather than a crime itself.

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Close Analysis of Film Openings- Fight Club;

Fight Club (1995)

Directed by: David Fincher
Written by: Chuck Palahniuk, Jim Uhls
Staring: Edward Norton, Brad Pitt
Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Certification: 18

  • At the beginning the audience can't make out what the image is portraying. However it is shown that the shot is overly detailed as if it has a microscope effect as the tracking shot zooms out of the body.
  • The shot which zooms out of the body represents the blood pumping throughout the body possibly to do with adrenaline which reflects the given title of the film "Fight Club" where blood is expected.
  • The title was of bold, white font which exploded in sequence to the non-diegetic music and with each explosion it acted as catalyst for chemical reactions within the body similar to scientific experiments.
  • The static noise of the electricity in the body begins the non diegetic drum and bass music which connotes the title of the film "Fight Club" because of the beats of punches and fouls. The music almost has a mystery, spy effect which could suggest that the thrill in this film has to do with something criminal/illegal.
  • The flash effect on the titles awakens your ideas of the film and draws your attention to impress your views on the film right from the beginning.
  • The time spent whizzing through the body continues to make the audience curious of who's system does this body belong to and creates an element of mystery through a black-hole effect.
  • Eventually, the shot zooms right out and we then encounter beads of sweat on an extreme close up of a mans face which focuses on his glaring eyes which we then assume he is in danger.
  • The shot tracks his face from eyes downwards to his nose where deliberate detail is shown through his flaring nostrils and nose hair which suggest he is heavy breathing due to the stress. This also connotes his beads of sweat which appeared earlier on his forehead.
  • The zoom out, tracking shot peaks when it reveals the man has been held hostage with a gun in his mouth. This is the first shot of violence in the film and the non-diegetic music is then halted as the villain speaks however his identity is not revealed to build the tension.
  • The point of view shot from the villains position focuses on the distressed male character who's body language (sweat, anxious eyes) clearly shows hes under pressure and faced with an ultimatum.
  • The narrator takes control the diegetic music which can only be heard by the film audience. This is dramatic irony and lets the audience know more than the characters do about the plot. It also helps the audience understand the enigma of the film. Quotes such as "People always ask me if I know Tyler Durden" imply this is dramatic irony.
  • Theres a contrast between dramatic irony and the script when a timescale is kept by Tyler Durden constantly being efficient with time quoting "three minutes" and " two and a half minutes". Time is also a major part of the title sequence as the fast-paced music and quick montage of shots parallels how limited time is to the plot.
  • The shot then cuts to a medium close up of the gun in the narrators mouth which suggests the scene will soon progress into violence. The narrator remains calm which is ironic considering he is being faced with death.
  • The shot then cuts from medium close up to an over the shoulder shot where Tyler Durden is still not visible with the gun. However Tyler controls the narrative by overtaking the overvoice of the narrator. This shows that Tyler and the narrator equally share the changing of the plot.
  • Tyler is then out of focus while the audience remain to look and listen to the narrator as he continues the story.
  • Tyler is dressed in a strict, army style wearing khaki combat trousers, tank top and short hair style to show his efficiency on his particular mission to recreate history. His muscles are exaggerated to show his masculine strenghth which also connote with the use of the gun as his form of masculine backup.
  • The narrator gasps for air as the gun is pulled out of his mouth by Tyler which connotes that he is taking each breath as a reward for living and surviving Tylers psychotic ways.
  • An extreme close up of the narrators face turning as he becomes more intriguied by Tylers talks shows a change in interest.
  • The cut to the long shot of the city out of the window makes the audience aware of the location, timing and that Tylers plan centers a busy area. The reflection of Tyler and the narrator in the window implies they are ghosts in the eyes of the citizens as they will die for what they believe in.
  • The narrator is tied to a black chair and is hopeless in changing the enigma because he is laid back and watching Tyler as he unravels his plans. The narrator has been stripped to his boxers and top to suggest he is equal to every other man which in Fight Club the males were stripped so they had no background and the only reason they were there was to fight.
  • The pace is then built with the fast track/zoom down the building to define the location and hunt the bomb similar to what the police would do. The shot goes deep down into the underground where there are apparent illegal happenings such as Fight Club and the bombs. Until the search of bombs reaches its location and the bleeps highlight it is active and the scene is almost finished. The speed of the shot sequence connotes the little time left for the bomb to blow up.
  • Tyler quotes the time constantly to show this is the essence and motif of the title sequence. It shows that there isnt enough time to mess around and that his revolution is serious.
  • The extreme long shot of the room, characters and city gives the audience a feel of the atmosphere and the shots surroundings.
  • The shot of the narrator is cut and zooms into a medium shot then extreme close up to suggest he is worried of the outcome.
  • The narrators voice is dominated by the ticking of the bomb.