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Blair Witch (2016) – Focus & Filming
Frequency of Shot Change
o The shots appear parallel to the music playing to increase...
Ouija: The Origin of Evil (2016) - Conventions
Conventions
Used
The title does not appear
until the end of the trailer,
th...
The Forest (2016) – Communication
“Marketing the film as ‘based on a true story’ enhances its credibility and
scare-abilit...
Carrie (2013) – Featured Theories
Theory Evidence
Todorov’s Equilibrium
Theory
Shots are shown of a serene family, with so...
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Trailer Conventions

A2 Media Studies

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Trailer Conventions

  1. 1. Blair Witch (2016) – Focus & Filming Frequency of Shot Change o The shots appear parallel to the music playing to increase the atmosphere of suspense for the audience. Along with this, as the music’s tempo and speed increases throughout the trailer, the number of shots begin to increase. This technique is done in many other trailers such as the Conjuring because this displays the action within the film itself to the audience which further connects to their fears and may increase the atmosphere and interest. Transition between Shots o The trailer shows simple transitions between inter-shots between scenes and differing shots which allows the audience to focus on the content of the trailer. Furthermore, the trailer commonly uses sharp cuts to emphasise the action and the fact it is showing clips filmed by students rather than a produced film. Order/Amount of Shots o The order of the shots are not shown chronological which is shown to distort the perception of the audience and, in my opinion, I believe this is done to keep the interest of the audience of the movie. The differing order allows the viewers not to know the whole synopsis and keep their interest throughout the trailer/film. Camera Treatment and Shot o As a ‘documented’ trailer to follow the lives of students, the majority of camera treatment is subjective with a minority being objective with scenes such as captions. Additionally, most shot angles are eye-level or low-angle throughout the shot although this does not reinforce the students’ power. I believe that doing this shows they are unable to pick up their head and confidently speak, showing their weak and vulnerable body language and facial expressions. There are also many tight and loose frames to emphasise fear as well as the power of the Witch, the villain.
  2. 2. Ouija: The Origin of Evil (2016) - Conventions Conventions Used The title does not appear until the end of the trailer, this increases the suspense of the audience in wanting to know the title and the style or credits for it, as audience members look out for names or companies they recognise. Additionally, this is a common convention due to the aesthetic image as it ties the trailer together. Showcasing stars is similarly done with showing companies and individuals who work on films. This is done to create a similar ground and interest different fan-bases. By doing this, audience members are more prone to watching the film due to actors/actresses they admire being included. This increases the yield of profit. Unusual angles are used throughout trailers such as Ouija to enhance the atmosphere of fear amongst the audience. This is done as high-angle and low- angle shots are often used to either make the viewer feel vulnerable to the entity and increases their fear of the Unknown. Alongside this, action is interspersed between captions to allow the build up of suspense and explain the ‘horror’ aspect of their trailer; recognising the evil to interest the audience. Images appear on screen only for a few seconds, only for our minds to register what we are seeing which is done to distort the audience and increase their fear and interest in the movie. This leaves questions in their mind which prompts them to watch the film (known as the Enigma Code).
  3. 3. The Forest (2016) – Communication “Marketing the film as ‘based on a true story’ enhances its credibility and scare-ability.” How has the trailer made to support this statement? With the ending credits prompting viewers to further research on the forest, they are likely to find the vast information of the Suicide Forest, located in Japan. By being based on a true location with the myths and legends of the forest being haunted by entities who have committed suicide, the film itself therefore becomes more credible with the backing evidence. Furthermore, by not specifying whether the story itself is real, the audience are prompted to believe that the plotline may be based on true occurrences as well. This overall adds to the fear and interest of the audience as they are able to link this to reality. Looking at the titles and credits, how are these presented and how to they add to the atmosphere? The production company’s logo itself appears clear at the beginning of the trailer which is often used to create a ground of recognition for the audience in order to remember the company. Furthermore, the captions appear as snippets of facts or sayings about the forest in order to emphasise the idea that the forest is uncontrollable as the entities will take over. The simple font allows focus on the writing itself and the faded image of a forest in the caption unconsciously reminds and keeps the idea of the forest in the audience’s mind to create more fear. Finally, the repetition of ‘Stay on the Path’ again highlights the fear of the Unknown as what is in the forest is not known to humans, so large anyone could get lost in it. The saying is repeated to add to the atmosphere of fear of the forest and link this to the real Suicide Forest.
  4. 4. Carrie (2013) – Featured Theories Theory Evidence Todorov’s Equilibrium Theory Shots are shown of a serene family, with some issues foreshadowing future conflict as the mother appears laughing and taunting her child. As the trailer continues, although not in chronological order, the shots appear to be filled with more chaos and disorder to show the conflict. Unlike the Equilibrium theory, a new Equilibrium is not shown. Barthes’ Enigma Code With the chaos erupting in scenes as the trailer plays out, the audience is left wondering what has happened to cause this shift and if the mother’s attitude in the beginning comes to play. Furthermore, viewers are left wondering what has happened in the prom. Voyeurism/Mulvey’s Male Gaze Although voyeurism often relates to sexual scenes to resemble the idea of a ‘Peeping Tom’, watching the scenes of the mother and child appear to relate to voyeurism by showing scenes that appear to be private. Furthermore, Mulvey’s Male Gaze is highlighted through the shower scene of Carrie. Levi-Strauss’ Binary Opposition Oppositions include: o Good and Evil o Action and Peace o Dark and Light o Religion and Modernism (Lack of Religion) Barbara Creed’s Monstrous Feminine Carrie appears in the trailer as in power unlike in the first version. The remake presents her character as revengeful of what is done to her and reinforces the idea that she is evil to the audience rather than evoking sympathy. Final Girl This is shown as there is one remaining girl in the end of the chaos of the film, the girl who failed to attend prom and was sympathetic towards Carrie. She is seen as a character who is more pure than those who hurt her and even Carrie herself who caused the damage.

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