Psychological Horror


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Psychological Horror

  2. 2. TITLING<br />During the introduction of most of the films the first acknowledgement of a film starting is the presentation of the picture company and their emblem. This is shown in the opening of Saw I with the picture company animated with barbed wire coiling around the words, it was accompanied by thunder lights emphasising (lightening) the film company.<br />A noted pattern was seen in the opening of Gothika, with the Warner Bros. emblem resembling a mirror with an adapted liquid crystallized effect. Then following is a cracking of lightening being the only source of light to highlighting the gargoyles reciprocating a satanic effect. Dark grey, blue and black moody colours are used in the titling of Gothika giving in return a depressing presence, even replacing the trademark yellow filling of the Warner Bros with a dark grey<br />
  3. 3. …..continued<br />The credits of the production team followed by the most famous actress Halle Berry comes in 33 seconds into the film first displayed as a blur of words and as it moves further away it becomes clear.<br />Saw also use a variety of grey tones in times new roman font with a jet black background as opposed to Gothika’s credit presentation over the film, with a 33 second wait for the presentation of the production team and the main actress (Berry) but stops when dialogue is exchanged and then continues on when the dialogue has been exchanged.<br />
  4. 4. CAMERA MOVEMENT<br />In the opening of the film ‘The Others’ tends not to do ‘tracking’ but instead be placed still at the point of action and then tends to zoom out from the action to enable the audience to capture the actions surroundings. To support the correlation between the camera movements and the point of action is in the opening scene when the woman (Kidman) wakes up screaming where the camera is still. Only after the woman stops screaming is when the camera starts to tilt and zooms out from the girl, showing the audience that she is lying in her bed indicating she had woken up from a nightmare.<br />In comparison to the ‘Silence Of The Lambs’ where the camera is constantly tracking the actress (Foster) indicating she plays a main part in the film. It starts off with a crane shot until the actress is in clear focus and follows her on the apparatus and stops when she is interrupted by a man. A convergence noted in most psychological horrors is that the camera doesn't’seem to use camera movements which will increase anxiety but rather opts for still shots with a few different frames.<br />
  5. 5. FRAMING OF SHOTS<br />A variety of frames is used in ‘The Others’ opening as it first starts with a close up of the main woman’s face to capture her facial expressions of the point of action which was her screaming, then gradually turns into medium long shot displaying the main actress’s state of mind is confused and seems not to know where she is .<br />The medium long shot enables the audience to see the actors body language and her facial expressions and witness that the main actress is not able to keep her eyes focused on one thing but look around her surroundings. In Gothika it also opens with a close up with (Cruz) in an assumed monologue expressing her thoughts on her ‘sexual intercourse’ with the devil. The frame continues to be extreme close up shots amidst the dialogue between Berry and Cruz showing the intensity of the conversation.<br />
  6. 6. …… continued<br />When the patient (Cruz) begins to express herself physically the shot automatically turns into a medium long shot to capture the intricate details of the body language of the patient. In The Others an anomie of psychological horrors angle is the long shot as it tends to not give the audience focus on point of action. The long shot was used in The Others to set the film and era of the film. Another frame that is frequently used in the film is over the shoulder shots when dialogue is being exchanged to give the audience the feeling that they are present during the conversation.<br />
  7. 7. CAMERA ANGLES<br />In the beginning of ‘The Ring’ a still frame is shot with a low level angle to signify the house with fear and insecure about it and make the house dominate the screen. Then it tends to stay on eye level framing indicating that there is no difference of status between the audience and the characters and that there should be no sympathy held towards them.<br />In ‘The Shining’ it opens with a birds eye view which is quite an unusual angle of a bendy road surrounded by trees as the camera traipses the pathway. This shot gives the audience power over the view of the action being held.<br />
  8. 8. MISE EN SCENE<br />In the opening of the ‘Silence Of The Lambs’ the actress moves against the stationary background of the woods therefore the attention is drawn towards the actress especially as she is the only character onscreen being shown. The actress is dressed in a grey jogging suit whilst tackling the obstacle courses (in between obstacles she is also jogging) indicating that the woman (Foster) is quite health conscious and has stamina which may become an important factor in the film. It is lighted with three point lighting to make it suitable for a natural look and doesn’tsuggest any ideas towards the audience, given that it is set in a forest, gives an involvement of nature and interlinks with the title with the use of a lamb and the timing of the day being before daybreak all colours displayed are dark cold colours ranging from stereotypical colours of horrors is black, blue and grey. <br />
  9. 9. Continued……<br />A noted pattern of the use of colours is spotted in ‘The Others’ with the use of dark misty colours with the house displaying neutral colours such as the brown furniture in the woman’s room (Kidman). The camera doesn’t place any emphasis on the furniture based in the characters room but the bedside table is kept in the shot of the frame where the character picks up a watch from it indicating there could be some significance to the watch.<br />But it again follows the usual guidelines of a psychological horror and starts off with one character that always tends to be the main character, this is seen in ‘Silence Of The Lambs’. The room is lit by the dimly lit sky, which is the trademark weather of Jersey, Channel Islands set in the time of 1945. Also a well known indicator of a horror is where the film is set in remote isolated places which is shown from the long shot of the main characters home and showing that there is no neighbour nor any socialisation around her house. <br />
  10. 10. EDITING DIRECTIONS<br />Psychological horrors tend to have an exchange of dialogue during the opening, which then causes for reverse shots to occur to catch peoples actions normally found in the dialogue, this is seen in Gothika with specific emphasis, The Ring and other psychological films. Quicking rhythms are not seen during the first opening of psychological horrors and the cutting rhythm tend to all be in sync with each other at a normal rate to give an ordinary effect.<br />
  11. 11. SOUND TECHNIQUES<br />