Tag Archives: Diegetic

The Purge: Anarchy: Features

For some reason unbeknown to me, I have always wanted to watch ‘The Purge’ films. Whether it is the storyline or the conversations of people asking, “What would you do if all crime was legal for one night?”, I have always wanted to watch them but have been too scared. After speaking to friends, I was told that “The Purge: Anarchy” is the least scary. Because of this, and it’s recent arrival on Netflix, I decided to be brave and watch it. The Purge: Anarchy was released in 2014 and has been categorised as an American, dystopian, action, horror film directed by James DeMonaco. Here is the trailer…

  • The Purge: Anarchy has a fairly cold colour palette. The colour palette is mainly focussed around colours such as blues and purples. These are colours often associated with negativity and sadness; this arguably sets the tone of the film as the audience are made to feel uncomfortable. However, some shots have a warm colour palette based on colours such as yellow and orange. These colours are used in the daylight when the purge has not yet commenced. Therefore, the warm colours display the safety in comparison to the dark and cold colours that display danger.
  • As the tension and action increases, so does the pace of the shots. Because of this, when the shots speed up, the audience know that something bad is going to happen. Therefore, whenever the shots speed up the audience feel tense and uncomfortable as they are unaware of the upcoming events. However, in some areas of the film, the slower paced shots also build large amounts of tension as it forebodes that something is not right and something bad is about to happen… the calm before the storm.
  • The whole storyline of The Purge: Anarchy is based on murder in a dystopian world. However, the fact that the film has been set in modern day America allows the audience to believe that the film is real and so allows them to empathise more with the characters as they feel nervous and uncomfortable also. The constant murder also allows the audience to feel on edge and uncomfortable throughout the entire film.
  • Masks are used throughout the film in order to create a sense of discomfort and fear. The masks themselves are scary however, the fact that the identity of that character is hidden allows you to feel much more nervous. This is because you are unaware of their capabilities and expressions. You can not clearly see their eyes and so actions made by these characters are highly unexpected which therefore makes the audience feel on edge throughout the whole film.
  • The isolation on the streets is emphasised by the empty buildings and dimly lit streets. The audience feel sympathy for those trapped outside as their fate will most probably be the end of their lives. The fact that people on the inside of secure buildings are also unsafe allows the audience to feel fear as it creates a sense that they themselves are not safe.
  • Throughout the film, diegetic sounds such as news reports, a countdown, gunfire, screaming and shouting are all emphasised and amplified. This emphasises the fact that these people are isolated and also shocks the audience. The constant update of news reports adds a sense of reality to the film and leaves the audience wanting the time period to be over just as much as the characters within the film!
  • The non diegetic soundtrack matches the pace of the film throughout. Often, quiet music is used in order to create suspense and tension before a larger event. The faster paced music could resemble the fast heart rate of the characters, and maybe audience, and also keeps the audience hooked and full of adrenaline.

Although this film left me wondering what would actually happen if this became a reality, I really enjoyed it. I shall take notice of the various features and try to include them in my two minute opening in order to improve the quality of it.

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Silence of the Lambs Opening

Silence of the Lambs was released in 1991 and is about a psychopath called Buffalo Bill and his murderous ways. Directed by Jonathan Demme, the film can be categorised as a thriller.

00:00:00 – 00:00:10 : The film opening begins with the famous ‘Metro Goldwyn Mayer’ ident sequence. The ident involves the roar of a lion to link to the commonly recognised sequence. The sequence then fades to black.

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00:00:12 – 00:00:29 : The next sequence shows the logo for the company, ‘Orion’. Orion is “a constellation on the equator east of Taurus represented on charts by the figure of a hunter with belt and sword.” (Merriam-Webster). This shows that often the name of the company links directly to the theme of the ident. In the background to the sequence, a calm and melodic composition is playing. The sequence then fades to black.

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00:00:32 – 00:00:40 : Fade in to opening scene. The same composed score is playing, therefore linking the opening scene of the film with the previous idents. The scene shows a foggy, winters day in a forrest. In the bottom right the location, ‘Woods near Quantico, Va’, is displayed. This sets the scene clearly. Emphasised diegetic sounds such as chirping birds are played in order to set the scene further.

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00:00:41 – 00:00:45 : Nothing considering the shot, scene and location as the previous aspect changes. Both the diegetic, and the non diegetic sounds are still playing. However, the shot no longer shows the location in the bottom right corner but shows the production company in the centre… ‘A Strong Heart/Demme Production’.

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00:00:46 – 00:00:49 : Once again, the various aspects to the shot have not changed. However, this time the main character’s name is displayed, ‘Jodie Foster’. The picture then begins to move slowly in order to show more of the location.

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00:00:50 – 00:00:54 : The scene continues to move with the same sounds. However this time, a new name appears… ‘Anthony Hopkins’.

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00:00:55 – 00:00:59 : More of the scene is revealed as a new name, ‘Scott Glenn’, is revealed.

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00:01:00 – 00:01:05 : As the scene continues to reveal more of the forrest, the composed score remains calm. This calmness increases the suspense and tension. The title, ‘The Silence Of The Lambs’, then appears in the centre of the shot.

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00:01:06 – 00:01:14 : A wide shot now displays a part of the forest. Over the mud hill, a woman begins to climb over in a hurried fashion. The music intensifies and the sounds become more emphasised.

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00:01:15 – 00:01:24 : As this scene continues and the woman becomes closer to the camera, two more names appear. ‘Ted Levine’ and ‘Anthony Heald’.

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00:01:25 – 00:01:37 : The opening scene then shows the same woman jogging through the woods. She is shown to be taking part in an ‘FBI Academy’.

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00:01:38 – 00:01:50 :As the scene further continues, three further names are shown. ‘Brooke Smith’, ‘Diane Baker’ and ‘Kasi Lemmons’. Afterwards, three more names flash onto the screen. These include, ‘Charles Napier’, ‘Tracey Walter’ and ‘Roger Corman’.

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The opening scene of the woman running through the woods with the same soundtrack and emphasised sounds then continues… 

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