Film Evaluation


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Film Evaluation

  1. 1. Film Evaluation<br />Part 1: Character<br />
  2. 2. Following Nick Lacey's basic schema of genre, we know that horror films have to follow a number of generic conventions in order to be recognized. In order to follow conventions of horror films, our film would have to follow a few, or only one, character being 'haunted' or followed by something, usually paranormal. Our film contains only one character, which heightens the sense of isolation and hopelessness of his situation. <br />This character’s profile is conventional of a typical horror film, as the audience of horror is stereotypically younger people (aged 15-30), and so by making younger people the main characters and putting them in situations that they would typically be in, the audience can relate and it makes the whole experience more scary. By doing this, the producers achieve what they set out to do, by frightening their target audience. Therefore, this is what we have done.<br />Character Profile<br />Name: Joe<br />Gender: MaleAge: 18<br />Scenario: Left alone in a house, enabling him to be haunted by a faceless threat.<br />
  3. 3. Part 2: Setting<br />
  4. 4. The setting we decided to use is the characters home. There is a single outside shot of the house at the very beginning of the film, and the rest is shot entirely inside it. This is a very inconspicuous location, and definitely one the audience can relate to. This makes it more scary for the audience, because if the films was set in a huge haunted mansion, the audience would probably never find themselves in that situation, but if it it set in their own home, a whole new level of realism is introduced.<br />
  5. 5. Part 3: Iconography<br />
  6. 6. The score also proves to be very significant throughout the film, as we made the decision not to use any dialogue once the film enters disequilibrium. This allows the score to create all of the tension. The music is very eerie and very conventional of the horror genre, climaxing at the most tense and exciting parts of the film.<br />Iconography follows conventions to some extent, however the main prop- the torch – could also heavily connote action or adventure, placed in the right scenario. Due to the time of day the story is based, the torch proves to be very significant. By keeping the setting essentially dark, it allows the audience to see what is happening, whilst still playing on the fear of the unknown and continuing the tension cause by the faceless threat, very typical of horror films.<br />
  7. 7. Part 4: Narrative and theme<br />
  8. 8. Two main themes we were told to use in our film - the film did not have to revolve around these, they just had to appear at some point.<br />Time - the passage of time is shown through five establishing shots in the daylight at the beginning of the film, and the contrast with the later dark house, after a fading transition when Joe wakes up.<br />Technology - Joe's torch is heavily depended on throughout the film.<br />
  9. 9. 'Night 1' definitely challenges Vladimir Propp's theory of narrative. It follows the theory in one sense, in that he suggests that all characters have a function and that they all act as agents in propelling the narrative, and by following the only main character, the whole of the film is produced. Propp also suggested there were seven different character types: hero, villain, donor, helper, princess, dispatcher, and false hero. In this way, our film challenges conventions. Joe has the potential to be the hero as he seeks out to restore the narrative equilibrium by embarking upon a quest. <br />The faceless threat can also be considered as a villain, but still doesn't follow the conventions proposed. However, it might be helpful to consider these theories are more frequent in feature films, in contrast to short ‘specialized’ films.<br />Considering narrative depth, our film neither used subjective nor objective character identification, as Night 1 is a very traditional 'get what you see' narrative. The film also breaks the fourth wall, and has no definite closure with an aperture narrative. <br />How it is conventional though, is the use of two out of five of Barthe's five codes:<br />1- Hermeneutic: the faceless threat is not revealed.<br />2- Proairetic: the 'noises' and 'movements' suggest something else is going to happen- causing tension. <br />