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Question One


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Question One

  1. 1. In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
  2. 2. <ul><li>Before we created our horror trailer, we decided to research existing films, posters and magazines so that we were aware of the typical conventions of our media . </li></ul><ul><li>We watched a range of trailers such as ‘30 Days of Night’ and ‘The Blair Witch Project’ on YouTube, and also looked at film magazines including ‘Total Film’ and ‘Empire’. </li></ul><ul><li>We found a range of conventions in each trailer including: </li></ul><ul><li>horror trailers feature more disequilibrium than equilibrium. </li></ul><ul><li>an attractive vulnerable female character. </li></ul><ul><li>an eerie soundtrack which compliments the shots. </li></ul><ul><li>fast, sharp edits towards the end. </li></ul><ul><li>a scary cliff hanger to finish the trailer. </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>After researching trailers, we also decided to analyse print work, as for our ancillary tasks we were expected to create a poster promoting our film, and a film magazine cover. </li></ul><ul><li>Typical Horror Poster Conventions </li></ul><ul><li>a member of the cast, or a prop from the film on the poster. </li></ul><ul><li>a bold, prominent title. </li></ul><ul><li>tagline from the trailer. </li></ul><ul><li>special effects such as black and white image. </li></ul><ul><li>release date and website. </li></ul><ul><li>red text. </li></ul><ul><li>credits at the bottom. </li></ul><ul><li>minimum age for the film. </li></ul><ul><li>In order to make our products look authentic </li></ul><ul><li>we decided to follow those conventions. </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>I modelled my magazine cover from ‘Total Film’ and found that conventions include: </li></ul><ul><li>The use of a maximum of three complimenting text colours. </li></ul><ul><li>The use of no more than three fonts. </li></ul><ul><li>A bold title at the top. </li></ul><ul><li>A promotion. </li></ul><ul><li>A magazine background, suitable to the main film genre. </li></ul><ul><li>One character from the film being promoted. </li></ul><ul><li>Adverts for other films. </li></ul><ul><li>Magazine website. </li></ul><ul><li>Issue number/Date/Price. </li></ul><ul><li>Barcode. </li></ul><ul><li>As these conventions are clearly successful, </li></ul><ul><li>I decided to follow them when creating my </li></ul><ul><li>own magazine cover. </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Our trailer follows most of the conventions of existing products, for </li></ul><ul><li>example: </li></ul><ul><li>we have not edited all of our shots in chronological order as this would reveal too much. </li></ul><ul><li>our trailer features a much higher proportion of disequilibrium, compared to equilibrium. </li></ul><ul><li>I found this particularly difficult as the purpose of a trailer is to </li></ul><ul><li>entice the audience into going to see the film; therefore we were </li></ul><ul><li>unable to fully reveal the murderer, as this would ruin the storyline. </li></ul><ul><li>However, we clearly challenged conventions by: </li></ul><ul><li>having a vulnerable male cast, as we wanted to reverse the stereotype, and therefore decided to have a dominant female. </li></ul><ul><li>I believe this is successful as it makes our trailer unique, which </li></ul><ul><li>will help to make it appeal to a broader audience. </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Since the purpose of a horror trailer is to advertise a film that will be exhibited in the future, it cannot give too much of the storyline away. </li></ul><ul><li>Therefore I do not believe our trailer follows Todorov’s Theory of Narrative Structure exactly. </li></ul>TODOROV'S THEORY states that every story has the same five stages:
  7. 7. <ul><li>However, I am able to see elements of Todorov’s </li></ul><ul><li>theory in our trailer: </li></ul><ul><li>Equilibrium – the establishing shot of the house. </li></ul><ul><li>Disruption – the hanging legs. </li></ul><ul><li>Equilibrium – two girls happy in the park </li></ul><ul><li>Recognition – girl in graveyard. </li></ul><ul><li>Disruption – bullying/ forest scenes. </li></ul><ul><li>Repair – kissing shot. </li></ul><ul><li>Disruption – forest </li></ul><ul><li>Possibility for new equilibrium – bathroom scene. </li></ul><ul><li>Clearly, for the purpose of our media, we are not able to reveal the </li></ul><ul><li>killer at the end of the trailer. Therefore the possibility for new </li></ul><ul><li>equilibrium is very short for impact. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Uses and Gratifications <ul><li>The theory is a popular approach to understanding mass communication. </li></ul><ul><li>It places more focus on the consumer, instead of the actual message itself by asking “what people do with media” rather than “what media does to people” (Katz, 1959) . </li></ul><ul><li>It is assumed that the audience take an active role by interpreting the media in their own way. </li></ul><ul><li>‘ It is suggested that people use the media to fulfil specific gratifications.’ (Katz, E., Blumler, J. G., & Gurevitch, M. 1974) </li></ul><ul><li>I believe this theory exists in our trailer, as the audience must be active in order to interpret events. It is then up to the viewer to make a decision whether or not to go and see the actual film. </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>To engage the audience we included a wide variety of locations in our trailer including: </li></ul><ul><li>Forest </li></ul><ul><li>Beach </li></ul><ul><li>Park </li></ul><ul><li>School </li></ul><ul><li>Riverside </li></ul><ul><li>For the backing track of our trailer we decided to use ‘Space Dementia’ by ‘MUSE’, as we felt it was very fitting to our genre. </li></ul><ul><li>We decided to arrange our shots to suit the soundtrack: </li></ul><ul><li>for example at the beginning during the equilibrium the music is eerie but is slow paced and ominous, alerting the audience for future events. </li></ul><ul><li>yet when the disequilibrium begins the pace of the music quickens, adding suspense. </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>For our flashback shots we decided to use a black and white grainy effect. </li></ul><ul><li>This would made the audience aware that they were looking back on events. </li></ul><ul><li>This follows and anachronic narrative, as the audience are being invited into the characters thoughts. </li></ul><ul><li>Lighting in particular was difficult for our film, as we had to film a large proportion at dusk, to ensure the shots weren’t too dark and unclear. </li></ul><ul><li>As my role included lighting, I decided to research into techniques which other crews have used whilst filming trailers. </li></ul><ul><li>Although we tried filming in the dark, the resolution of the camera was too unclear and therefore we decided to darken the shots during the editing stage. </li></ul><ul><li>To provide an eerie effect we also used </li></ul><ul><li>industrial torches and car lights to </li></ul><ul><li>illuminate certain shots. </li></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>As another of my roles was filming, I researched into existing conventions and decided to include some in our trailer. </li></ul><ul><li>I think one shot in particular, when the camera is positioned at a high angle over a tortured male actor is very effective as it portrays the characters sense of vulnerability. </li></ul><ul><li>Another significant shot is when the camera is positioned behind the trees, to make is appear as if someone is watching the car and the male. I found this was a commonly used angle in horror trailers. </li></ul><ul><li>Therefore, in filming aspects, I believe our trailer does use conventions of existing media products. </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>Overall, I feel that in terms of both my major project and ancillary tasks that I have used and developed conventions of real media products. </li></ul><ul><li>I also believe that our horror trailer challenges some conventions of existing products, especially as we have a vulnerable male cast, opposed to a stereotypically female one. </li></ul>