Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product?
When we edited our preliminary data, I wasn’t sure on what I was doing and how to use the software, but now that our final product is finished, I have learnt a lot on how to use Final Cut Pro software. For example, I know how to add in effects and what they are used for and I have learnt how to add in transitions. I now know how to add in sounds and I have learnt about the ways in which you can transform a scene in terms of zooming in/out, changing the brightness and altering the effects added on to the scene to make them look better and make the film look more professional. I have learnt how to cut scenes and how to put them where they need to go and how to place a scene in between two other scenes. Additionally, I have learnt how to add text and titles on to a scene and how to alter the titles in terms of the font size and colour.
When we edited our preliminary data, I wasn’t sure how to use the software, but with practice, I was able to learn how to use the software and the different types of effects you can add to the film to make the film look better, to make it flow and to make it look professional. The effects we used on our preliminary data took a while to figure out how to change them and put them in the right place. Creating preliminary data helped us a lot when editing out final product because my group and I had experience from the preliminary data, therefore we were able to use the effects and change them to how we liked them on our film quicker than with the preliminary data.
When we filmed our final product, we used a larger range of camera shots to make our film seem more professional and interesting to watch. Comparing the preliminary data to our final product, there is a difference in the camera shots and editing effects we added and the final product looked a lot more professional and we used a lot more effects and sounds to make the film as thrilling as possible.
If we had the chance to make changes to our final product, I would use more effects and use different camera angles to help show there is a difference in the power the characters have. For example, I would use some low angle shots for the woman when she’s putting on the make-up to show she has power to a certain extent and would use high angles when showing the woman when she was frightened and trying to hide in the corner when the door opens to show how the woman has almost no power.
How did you attract/ address your audience?
To attract an audience, we created suspense in our film opening to make the film seem more thrilling to watch and use the conventions that other thriller films tend to use in order to get an audience that would enjoy the film.
We used various sounds to our thriller such as a siren, a police call from the mother of the girl and a news report that helps the audience understand the girl is missing. The idea of adding these sounds made the film seem more thrilling as it added a serious effect that showed the girl was missing. My group and I added other sounds as well such as a door squeaking open and the sound of the jewellery box to add a creepy, chilling effect to the film opening. All the sounds used would help to attract an audience because they add a creepy, chilling effect that makes the film opening seem more suspenseful and enjoyable to watch.
When we filmed our thriller opening, we used different camera shots and angles to create more of an effect that makes the film seem intriguing to watch. For example, we used close ups of the woman to demonstrate her emotions and to show the actions she was doing with the make-up to show the audience the woman has gone crazy. We also added these sorts of close ups to create a frightening feel for the audience as the woman was looking in the mirror but the shot showed the woman looking at the camera, therefore when the viewer watches the film opening they will think the woman is looking directly at them, creating a terrifying feel. We also used a few long shots of the girl when she was walking home from school to imply to the audience that the girl is all alone and helps create a slightly sympathetic feel as she looks innocent. These shots help attract an audience as the camera shots help to create a suspenseful effect that makes the audience change their emotions. For example, the audience may feel sympathetic for the children for a moment and then the next moment they are scared by a deranged-looking woman looking like she’s coming out of the screen and directly looking at the audience.
Furthermore, we used various effects when we edited our film opening to create a thrilling effect, make sure the film flowed and to make the film seem more interesting to watch. The effects used on the girl helped the audience understand the scene was a flashback of the woman’s life just before she was kidnapped and some of the effects used on the woman at the beginning of the film opening created an effect that made a distortion effect that makes the audience wonder what the woman looks like and who she is, creating a mystery effect. The editing techniques we used in our film opening made the film seem more interesting and add a scary effect, especially the effects used on the woman and the distortion used to create her character at the beginning of the film.
Overall, we created a suspenseful effect to attract our audience by using different techniques to make the film more thrilling to watch. Additionally, we mainly created a suspenseful effect to the film opening by the use of camera shots as they were easier to make the viewer feel different emotions, such as sympathy for the girl and fright for the woman. All the different techniques used in our film attracts an audience because we have tried to make the film as thrilling as possible but at the same make the film interesting to watch in order to keep the audience engaged in the film.
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2. How does your media product represent particular social groups?
When creating our film, my group and I didn’t really think of including stereotypes or countertypes of characters as our film is based on a woman who has been locked up for a long time after being kidnapped and who may have developed some mental problems over the years. However, to some extent we tried to make the characters, especially the woman seem slightly insane by rocking on her chair and staring into the mirror creepily, to represent to the audience that she is crazy. Rocking on a chair may seem like a stereotype of people with mental health problems as this is what most people imagine them to be like and how they act.
In terms of the audience, they would probably women who are around the age of 15 and above or maybe men as well from the age of 15 and above who enjoy watching thriller films. This genre will probably attract more of an audience because it is quite popular and there are many sub genres associated with thrillers. The social groups would probably be people who prefer twists in films and who enjoy watching films that have unusual storylines.
Our film represents a psychological thriller because it scarcely involves violence and involves targeting the emotional well-being of the characters rather than their physical health. We decided to make our film a psychological thriller because there aren’t as many psychological thrillers as there are other thrillers (i.e. crime thrillers) and I find that psychological thrillers can sometimes be more interesting to watch and they usually contain more twists in the plot that make it more entertaining to watch. As there are more popular thriller sub genres, we decided to make our opening a psychological thriller to attract a large audience as there aren’t many films that have a similar storyline to ours and we wanted to created something different that was unusual.
- In what ways does your media product use, develop, or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
When my group and I had to think of a film opening, we thought we would use the idea of a child getting kidnapped but not being found and being trapped in a room for lots of years because we figured that most kidnapping thriller films you get are based on someone getting kidnapped but being found by the end. So to make our film seem more thrilling, we decided that instead of having a child kidnapped and found for our thriller, we thought we would show her life after being kidnapped and not being found.
When we developed our film, we used different conventions to make the film seem interesting and to help the viewers understand what is happening in the film opening.
Here is a screen shot of the woman looking at the mirror. We added ‘fun house’ and ‘dream’ effects to the camera shot to make it look creepy, distorted and to allow the audience to have a different perspective of her. This was also done because the distortion made the opening slightly more thrilling and shows the audience that after all these years of being locked up, the woman might have changed, in terms of her mental health.
We used many different effects to our film opening to make the shots look more professional because most thriller films use different effects to make the movie seem chilling and sinister. For the flashbacks, we used two main effects; ‘Aged film’ and ‘memory’. These two effects were used to make the audience understand that the shots were of the woman when she was a child around the time of her kidnapping. My group and I thought that the effects we used looked professional to some extent and we tried to make sure it flowed and fitted in with our film opening.
When we filmed our thriller opening, we mainly used the camera convention close ups and mid shots. We used these shots so that the audience would feel engaged and can understand and see the expressions on the characters faces and what they were doing. We used close-ups to make the shots seem more intense and creepy. The close ups were ideal; especially the straight views where the characters were looking in the mirror (at the camera) because it adds an effect that they are looking directly at the audience, making the shots seem chilling and quite frightening. The use of mid shots helped to show emotions and what the characters were doing in that scene. Throughout the film opening, we used a few long shots to set the scene of where the character was and what she was doing. For example, we used a long shot when the girl was walking down the road to show the audience there was a change in scenery and to show that the shots were flashbacks of the woman’s past. This shot can also be symbolic as she is all alone, which can relate to the woman being lonely as the shot was taken so far away.
Planning our opening, my group and I thought we should use some camera shots that were taken from different places. For instance, we shot the characters from different angles such as sides view, front views and over the shoulder views. Here are some of the shots we used in our film.
We filmed the shots at different angles to show the audience what the characters looked like at different angles to get a better interpretation of them and to give the audience an idea about how small the room was that the woman was kept in. Shooting at different angles also gave an effect that helped the audience to get a better picture of the characters in their minds and feel like they were in the characters place.
Mise en scene:
When we were planning our film, my group and I thought we would add the convention of a jewellery box that both the woman and child had when throughout the film to add a creepier effect that was more suspenseful. We showed the jewellery box with both characters because we thought it would help the audience understand that the box was symbolic and show it was the same character just at different times in her life; the shots of the girl were flashbacks of before and after she was kidnapped. Additionally, we thought there should be makeup in the box and have the characters put the makeup on to show they are the same person and to create a creepy but psychotic effect to the woman as she was drastically putting on the makeup. This made the character seem scarier and made the film opening seem more thrilling. The woman character looking in the mirror created an effect that symbolised she’s looking at her reflection of how she pictures herself to be and creates a creepy effect.
The woman in our thriller opening was portrayed as someone who had become deranged after spending around thirty years in a locked room with minimal chance of escaping. At first, the woman’s face is distorted so you cannot see her face. This adds suspense as the audience does not know what this character looks like. As the film opening continues, the audience then sees the woman applying makeup to her face in a drastic way, which gives the audience the idea that she is mentally unstable. This then leads to the audience wondering all sorts of questions such as: Who is this woman? Why is she applying makeup in a strange way? What is she going to do next? Where is she? Not knowing the answers help make the film more intriguing and adds suspense to the film opening, leading to the audience wanting to know more.
The girl in our film opening was supposed to be portrayed as defenceless and helpless as she is mostly just sitting on a stool applying makeup to her face. The way she was presented was supposed to make the audience feel sympathetic towards her for being locked away with minimal hope of escaping. When the girl was walking home from school, we used long shots to show how alone she is and to demonstrate her vulnerability.
When we edited our film opening, we added a lot of sounds to the film to make it seem more intense and add a thrilling effect to it. We added the jewellery box sound to the film as it could continually play throughout the clip and make the film opening seem more thrilling. We also added some dialogue to the film opening; we added a police call when the mother of the girl called to report she was missing and we added a news report about the girl when she went missing. My group and I added these voice recordings to our film opening to ensure that the audience understood that the girl had been kidnapped and to show that the girl is the same person as the woman. Furthermore, we added a siren sound to the film opening to add the effect that shows the audience the girl was kidnapped and the police were looking for her. The deep ambient sound we added to the film made it seem more intense and created a creepy feel to the opening. In addition, my group and I added the convention of a door creaking open as this makes a more chilling effect and we used a door slamming shut at the end of the film opening to just create that suspenseful moment at the end. These sounds used made the thriller opening more suspenseful and helped the audience understand that the girl is the woman and that she hadn’t been found. Furthermore, we added these sounds to our thriller to make sure the opening seemed thrilling and told the opening story to the film.
When we were creating the film opening, we liked the ideas from the film opening of Se7en because it was a montage of images put together and had shots of different objects associated with the film, for example, there was a shot of a man using a razor to peel off his fingerprints, there was another shot of police tape at a crime scene and there was a map with different marks on them. These sorts of shots in a montage form made the film opening seem interesting and gave the audience a lot of information without revealing the whole storyline. My group and I liked this idea and thought we would use a similar idea by trying to create a montage of images. However, we used more movement in the shots taken whereas the opening of Se7en used less movement and more shots.
Here are the film posters I have annotated based on thrillers.
This is our proposal sheet. Amrit created it for us, however, we thought of the ideas together to make sure we all agreed with the contents of what the film was going to be about.