The Music Box Evaluation
The Music Box Evaluation
By Neelam Appadoo
By Neelam Appadoo
The Music Box Storyline
Our film opening has two main characters; Elle is the teenage girl and
also a ballet dancer who plays the victim role as she is being targeted by
Billy who is stalking her. He targets her on her journey home from ballet
practice and we are shown their every move during the journey.
The film opening begins with a typewriter scene which
reads ‘the music box’, as it is telling a story and this scene
automatically grabs the audiences attention as they would
want to know who the person typing is.
Then, the whole concept of the stalker idea comes into picture
when Billy slams the music box and Elle falls over in her ballet
practice. They pass through several places before finally
coming across an alleyway where Elle realises she is being
followed and begins to run.
This then leads onto a bridge scene and then to an underground car park for the climax
where Elle thinks she has escaped Billy but is unknown to the fact that he is approaching her
In what ways does your media product
use, develop or challenge forms and
conventions of real media products?
Use- The genre for our film is ‘Thriller’ so to ensure that this genre is evident
to our audience, we included a thriller type font on plain black screens for
our production name.
Develop- The two characters in our film opening, Elle and Billy have
completely different characteristics. Elle is the victim and is innocent
whereas Billy is the stalker with the motive to kill. This relates to Claude Levi
Strauss’ theory of Binary Opposition as our two characters are opposed
and engages the audience.
Challenge- Our film opening consists of implicit horror rather than explicit
horror which I think is far more effective. During the followed journey
home, our intention was to build suspense throughout up until the point
where Billy approaches Elle. This is challenging other thriller/horror films as
we did not include any gory clips as all the horror was implied so that our
audience can come to their own interpretation.
How does your film represent particular social groups?
The victim(Elle) is represented as a teenage
girl who is vulnerable and is seen as an easy
target by Billy. She is dressed in black ballet
clothes to show Billy’s obsession with ballet
girls, hence the whole music box
incorporation. The colour black also symbolises
Elle’s mysterious feelings as she is mysterious as
to who is following her which is also shown
through her actions when she keeps turning
around to see whether anyone is following her.
The stalker(Billy) is dressed in all black similar to Elle
as the colour black has the connotations of horror
and he is the killer. He has his hood up throughout
the film opening which links with the typical
stereotype(O’Sullivan) of men following and
targeting women. The idea of the hood being up
also covers his face slightly which adds to the
overall thriller. We used a male character as
typically women would be targeted by men.
What kind of media institution might distribute
your media product and why?
After carrying out some research on
media institutions, I found that ‘Newmarket
Films’ would be the most suitable institution
Our film would be first publicised at the cinema,
and then 6 months later will be put into high definition
to distribute our film. In the past, the
and distributed onto a Bluray DVD. This source of
production company has distributed films
distribution will allow the audience to purchase the
like ‘Prom night’ which is a thriller film and
film and watch it in the comfort of their own home at
has the similar storyline to ours of a man
their own convenience. The film will still remain as a
stalking a teenage girl with the motive to
12A classification when on DVD and will be distributed
kill her. Another film distributed by this
in stores like WHSmith and HMV so it is available to
production company is ‘Death of a
purchase. It will also be distributed online on websites
president’ which is also a thriller and both
such as, play.com and Amazon.
have the same classification of a 12A. The
distributer ‘Original Film’ could also
produce our film as they have distributed
films of the same rating and genre to ours,
for example ‘Stealth’.
Who is the target audience?
We have chosen to give our film a 12A classification following
the guidelines from the BBFC website, and this can be justified on
the fact that our film does not include any element of explicit
horror as all of our horror is implied.
We thought that a 15 would not be suitable as there are no
scenes which include and gruesome horror but we still manage
to keep the thriller genre as we thrill our audience
psychologically with the building up of the suspense during the
We thought that a Parental Guidance(PG) classification would
be too subtle as there are some scenes for example, the climax
of the two characters running fast in the car park could be
disturbing for a younger audience.
Also, by choosing a 12A classification this would broaden our
audience so it can be watched by more people and increase
How did you attract your audience?
Our film is titled ‘The music box’ and the initial
thoughts that are brought into mind from this title
are not necessarily linked to any sort of thriller or horror
content. This attracts our audience as they would want
to watch the film in order to understand the reason for the title.
The main part of the film opening is in the chase which begins in an
alleyway and ends in an underground car park. The fast speed at which
they are running and the several places they pass through grabs our
audiences attention and keeps their interest.
Our film opening is set in a local Town so that it
appears more realistic to the audience as they
could be in the same situation as the victim, and
therefore makes it scarier for them.
We included close up shots and jump cut editing techniques with low
key lighting which reflects the thriller genre and creates an overall
feeling of the victim as she is feeling uncomfortable.
What have you learnt about technologies from the
process of constructing your film?
Construction- During the construction process of our film, we learnt
how to use a video camera to create different types of shots, one
being the tilting of the screen. Also, that the tripod is necessary for
creating a successful pan shot or pan shot follow as it creates a
smooth and steady shot. However, in other cases for example
during a chase, using a handheld camera is much more effective
as it appears more authentic to the audience and makes them
feel as though they are in that characters position . We also
discovered ‘night mode’ and used this quite a lot when filming.
Editing- The apple software ‘imovie’ has enabled us to cut our
film and edit it so that it merges together to create one
continuous flow of shots. We have also learnt that you can add
effects for example, ‘sci-fi’ and adjust the contrast of shots. We
can also lengthen/shorten clips and over lap two shots which we
incorporated into our film opening. We learnt how to upload music
onto ‘GarageBand’ and edit the music by lengthening/shortening
other areas. We also learnt how to add sounds to existing music
and create our own music using the GarageBand sounds.
Looking back at your preliminary exercise ,
what do you feel you have learnt in the
progression from it to the film?
From carrying out the Preliminary exercise, it was an
opportunity for me to remind myself of the basic video camera
skills which made me more confident when filming. Also, we
learnt that the continuity needs to remain the same so the film
The 180 degree rule was also new to me so when we
were storyboarding and filming our film, we had to ensure
that we did not disobey this rule. If we did then this would
confuse our audience, which we did not want to do.
The mise en scene needed to remain the same, for example
the folders on the table in front of me had to be the exact same
ones all the time and positioned in the exact same position for