The Evaluation Media Project Title: K.S.G.S (School Ground Serial Killer) Candidate Name: Calum Burton Candidate Number: 8009 Centre Number: 42139
In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? <ul><li>My Media product uses many conventions of the horror genre. First would be the way that the ‘monster’ is always shown in Point Of View shots so that the audience has a sense of how close the monster is, and the way that the audience never sees the ‘monster’ clearly is another convention of the horror genre that I have used for my piece to increase tension in the piece, inspired by films such as The Burning and Friday The 13th . There is a part where the camera zooms into a tree, then the camera shakes wildly, this was intentional. Inspired by The Blair Witch Project it is a technique to decrease focus and tension so that there is a big shock when the ‘monster’ appears from behind the tree. </li></ul><ul><li>One of the biggest horror convention would be the way that everything is set up in the opening dialogue in the way that the dialogue starts off casual between two characters, and then there is a definite turn to the conversation as it turns darker and starts to set up the story so that the audience can grasp what is happening whilst still keeping it quite ambiguous, very evident in the beginning of The Shining, and Jacob's Ladder. </li></ul><ul><li>The music is of my own invention much like John Carpenter. The chase music was inspired by John Carpenter’s Halloween theme, in the way of having a simple organ riff that changes the pitch down when it plays for a second time. For the first section I experimented with a few notes in a singular loop, then by using the same notes played in a different order, I was able to come up with the first piece of music and the chase music that is heard in my final piece. </li></ul>
Cont.. <ul><li>I have tried to avoid being too cliché of the horror genre in my piece, I have avoided the use of stock footage and stock sound effects, evident in such films as Zombie Creeping Flesh , and instead created my own music and sound effects to be included. Although I do feel that I could have had a greater impact on the audience if I had adopted some of the conventions of more niche horror genres such as psychological horror. However I felt it was important to maintain some of the most identifiable convention of the mainstream horror genre in order to help create meaning and more recognisable narrative threads in the short space of film available in the title sequence. These conventions can be seen in films such as Evil Dead 2 , Plan 9 From Outer Space, and Dark Night of the Scarecrow . </li></ul>
How does your media product represent particular social groups? <ul><li>The main social groups represented in my film are young teenagers, age 14-17. Classes represented are B and BC, This is represented through the films mis en scene, being set in a school and the characters wearing costume which would be typical of a teenager. The piece also represents aspects of this social group by including the theme of bullying, a topic which would be stereo typical among this social group. This is referenced in my piece through such as through the lines ‘I feel guilty’ and ‘remember, it wasn’t any of us’. </li></ul><ul><li>In my film the male character is shown as quite dominant as it is him that is explaining to the female character what has happened, and also trying to reassure her about the situation. He also survives the monster whilst the female doesn’t, which is another generic convention of horror movies, most notably the slasher genre. </li></ul>
What kind of media institution might distribute your media product and why? <ul><li>My media product will most likely be distributed by a small scale film industry specialising in horror mainly because it is an independent horror movie lacking a budget and mind blowing special effects, such distributors include Troma Films, Vipco, and WingNut Films. </li></ul><ul><li>This could also be distributed by a TV company because of the lack of gore and sexual content and a finished film could be distributed as a TV movie like IT , Salem’s Lot and Dark Night Of The Scarecrow, which are scary, low budget TV horror films that have become cult classics. Although I am confident that it may not get much airtime on TV. </li></ul><ul><li>I believe that because of the content and the scary scenes in my film, but a lack of violence, gore and sexual content. My film may be classed by the BBFC (British Board of Film Classification) as a 12 (12A in cinemas) for scary scenes and strong threat. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
Who would be the audience for your media product? <ul><li>The audience would be late teen, young adult audiences, which is the typical audience for a horror film. The use of suspense and tension coupled with mystery and adrenaline often mean that the 'shock' ideologies embedded in this genre appeal to this age of audience. However there might be attraction from a couple of younger/older audiences because of the lack of gore or sexual content in my film. The film may attract more male viewers than female viewers because the film has a male dominated cast, as the only female character is killed. But because of the lack of gore, there may be interest from female viewers as well. </li></ul>
How did you attract/address your audience? <ul><li>One of the main techniques I have used to immerse my audience into my film is using POV shots from the point of view of different characters, most notably, the monster’s point of view. I have also used dialogue that is very relative to the film in increasing tension and telling the back story of the plot, although I have done this very discreetly, as I have incorporated it into a normal conversation between two characters, which is another generic convention of a horror film. </li></ul><ul><li>One of the most notable scenes is the monster emerging from behind a tree, which I have used this to shock the audience as they haven’t seem the monster so far, I have put a metallic effect to the scene with makes the monster itself illegible, but the motion of the monster is un-miss able, also the sound of the monster growling very loud enhances the shock value as it jumps out onto the audience. </li></ul>
Cont.. <ul><li>The chase scenes between the monster and the female victim are very important in attracting my audience to my media piece. As they are very fast paced, and the way the camera moves from the monsters Point of View makes it seem like the monster is very agile and can move and climb very quickly. There is also a point where the monster is much closer to the victim than the audience will think which also increases the tension in my piece. Finally a black background littered with sound effects is the finishing touch to my piece as it engages the viewer’s imagination about what has happened to the victim and creates an effective kill scene without the kill actually being shown on film. </li></ul><ul><li>I have tried to create a strong versimilitude using sound and special effects to create a sense of tension in the sudience and intimacy with the characters in the hope the audience will feel more 'attached to the characters. By establishing a narrative thread in the title sequence of the film I am able to grab the audiences attention and make them want to find the out the resolution of the situation. </li></ul>
What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product? <ul><li> From the use of the technology I have learnt many things, such as we began having problems with the music as I recorded the music on my phone was in a format that wasn’t compatible with Adobe Elements or even WinFF. We had to download an independent converter to convert the file to mp3, which then I could upload onto Adobe Elements. </li></ul><ul><li>I have experimented with many different effects with Adobe Elements such as black and white and colour changing. I have also learnt how to trim and edit my film to create the desired length and how to change speed to cut time and increase tension, to name but a few things. The most important effect I learnt was the zoom function, as it allowed me to remove a revealing mistake from the film.. I was able to adjust the music across the film using the music line in Adobe which allows you to fade or omit sections. </li></ul><ul><li>Overall my experience with Adobe Elements has advanced my skills in film editing and made me more capable with the software, I understand much more about the software, its uses and what is available and not available. By editing a few ‘short’ films using other peoples unused and unedited footage, the software allowed me to experiment with effects, sound and titles. Which I have incorporated clearly into my final product. </li></ul>
Cont… <ul><li> I used a blog to present my coursework which I had not used before. I learnt to convert files so that they were in the correct form for upload to my blog. For example the film I made in adobe was exported as an avi and then converted to an flv for upload to wordpress. WINFF was the software used as a file converter. The reason I did not burn it as an flv was that the quality was affected. Doing it as an AVI seemed to give me a better qulaity product for submission. </li></ul><ul><li>I used software called save2pc to download clips of the films I researched from youtube and then converted them into flv's for my blog. </li></ul><ul><li>I used search engines to find out information and email and facebook to get feedback and communicate with my actors and teacher. I feel that my overall technological skills have taken a huge learning curve and that I am much more proficient and ready for A2. </li></ul>
Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product? <ul><li> I have learned many things such as experimenting with more visual effects and learning to use a different software program for editing. I have learned how to use and utilise many different horror conventions for my film piece such as discreet back story dialogue, and a male killer. </li></ul><ul><li>Most notably I have learned how to write a script much better as the script/dialogue I used for my preliminary task was phenomenally terrible. I tried to show that a character was hiding emotions, but instead it looks much worse. With my main task, I have incorporated much more into the dialogue what with setting up a back story and clearly showing a friendly relationship between the two characters which is a large improvement since my preliminary task. </li></ul>
Cont… <ul><li>I have increased my ability with the camera; using different shots and style, most notably the Point Of View shot, to increase belief of the monsters abilities, and by using different shots I am able to focus on the monster and the victim separately which helps the audience focus on their relationship as monster and victim. </li></ul><ul><li>I feel that the end product is quite good and very well done, however, I would have to work on keeping a camera steady as a couple of shots there are camera movement where there shouldn’t be. However I hope that this won’t pull me down too badly as it is only in a couple of scenes and doesn’t continue for the rest of the piece, and there are multiple cuts which mask points of unwanted camera wobble. Next time, I will be sure to ether learn how to hold a camera more steadily or get someone else to do the camera work whilst I direct. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
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