Tag Archives: Thriller

Decision To Start Again…

Emelia and I were hugely grateful for the various comments made when we showed our original rough cut to our classmates. However, we have together come to the decision to refilm. We have come to this decision for various reasons. Some of these include…

  • Firstly, we have decided to refilm the entire opening as we previously made some critical mistakes, such as breaking the 180 Degree Rule, that we can not include in our final product. Although we could simply refilm these specific parts of the opening, this is not an option for us as our original location is no longer available!
  • We also believe that the original location was a bit too dark and our lighting needed improvement in order for our film to seem legitimate and professional. In order to get over this issue, we plan to film in a much more open house with many more windows!
  • Due to problems with the SD cards, Emelia and I previously had to resort to filming much of the opening on my phone. Although this was not a huge issue, we feel as though our opening could be a whole lot better with improved quality and continuity. Many of our original shots were blurry and not in focus. This could have been due to the fact that we were inexperienced with the equipment, but could also be because of our pushed time limit and inclination to rush. In order to get over this problem, I shall invest in new SD cards and make sure that they are ready for filming the night before.
  • When watching our original footage, Emelia and I noticed that in many you could actually see us! These pieces of footage can not be used and so we have decided that when refilming, we need to be fully aware of shiny and reflective surfaces!
  • Emelia and I had not originally filmed the outdoors scene and so believed that if we were to refilm and do it all on the same day, the continuity of our opening would be a whole lot better.
  • Due to problems with equipment, Emelia and I had no sound for our original footage. Recreating the sounds needed in post production may have worked, but it would have included many hours of effort for an end product that would not fit perfectly in sync. Because of this, we feel as though it would be much better to have another go at filming the whole opening and having sound that fits perfectly with what is happening in the picture!

Overall, Emelia and I have chosen to refilm because we feel as though we could achieve a much better film. We had higher expectations for our opening and would like to meet these as best as we can. Some of the problems that we have encountered are impossible to rectify without refilming that certain shot. However, due to the lack of access to our previous location, the continuity of our opening would be a whole lot better if Emelia and I were to simply refilm the entire opening. Something that Emelia and I have to consider first, before rushing ahead, is what we are going to change…

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.

Colour Palette

In order to make our film opening as realistic as possible we decided to do a survey on SurveyMonkey to see what most people would expect from a thriller movie. We think that having a strong colour palette is extremely important because it will help to portray the right atmosphere and emotions in our film.
The results from the survey say that most people would expect the colour palette to be either cold colours (such as blue and grey) or dark colours (such as black and brown.)

Using a cold colour palette would help to show the iciness and intensity that we are trying to portray. Considering that our setting is going to be a frosty field this would be an excellent choice because it would make the frost seem even more intense and threatening, especially considering how the young girl will be shown alone outside.
On the other hand, using a dark colour palette would enhance the thriller aspect to our film and make it seem scarier. We think this would be a good idea because we want to make the thriller genre really evident in our film so that we can fulfil the task properly. This could also make the film seem a lot more intense because the darkness will add to the fear of the unknown.
After carefully considering both options we have decided to use a mixture of both cold and dark colours. We have chosen this decision because we feel like it would enhance the atmosphere that we are trying to portray and help to make our film seem more like a thriller.

Here are a few examples of the colour palettes that we intent to use in our film…

Rough Ideas for Idents…

It was now time for Emelia and I to begin designing and creating a set of idents for our film opening. Ideally, Emelia and I would like to animate one ident, using the software Motion, and to film one in real life. We would like to do a mix of the two as we feel that it will display more method and skill.

The first thing that Emelia and I thought about was how to link our idents into our chosen genre, thriller. Due to this being our genre, we thought that an ident involving an aesthetically pleasing, simple event would fit nicely. We also tried to incorporate some sort of event that would forebode a bad thing happening in the upcoming film. The first ident idea that we came up with was of a simple dandelion. We would animate this particular ident and have the seeds blowing in the wind over our chosen title. Our next idea for an animated ident involved a forest of trees with one falling down in the centre to reveal the title. We then began to think of more simple ideas, we came up with the idea of a door being slammed shut in a dark film; this would be easy to film. We then branched off this simple idea and came up with the idea of some candles flickering in the dark and then blowing out to reveal the title; this has a simple yet slightly sinister tone to it and we can imagine it being fairly aesthetic. Emelia and I then tried to think of ideas for an ident that links to our chosen genre of a thriller. We wanted to film a pair of eyes and then would add an effect to make the screen flicker to reveal eyes with the colour completely washed out and then flicker back to normal. We then had the idea to have a rocking chair in a simple and dingy room that would gradually gain pace; this could be either animated or filmed and so gives us some leeway. Here are our first six rough ideas for an ident… 16667218_696549787193012_1002824851_o.jpgEmelia and I plan to use two or three idents in our end product and so our next stage was to  pick out our favourite three. In the end, we picked the dandelion, eyes and candles. We chose these three as we believe that they will best suit our storyline and pace of the film. We also feel as though they are possible to create in our limited time frame. Now that we have our three favourites, Emelia and I need to plan how to film them and what to call them. For the dandelion ident we have thought about the name “Covet Productions”. The word covet means to yearn to possess something, especially something belonging to another. We liked how it sounded and although it does not link directly to the dandelion on the ident, it could link to our storyline. We liked the sound of “Flicker Pictures” for our ident based on the eyes. This would directly link to the actions occurring in the ident and sounds rather catchy. Here are our three final chosen idents… 16651346_696561747191816_1007018293_o.jpg

Response from Pitch…

Here is the video of our pitch…

Emelia and I tried to keep our pitch as close to the 30-60second time period as we could; however, we found it difficult to fit in the specific details in this time period and so over ran. We are happy with how our pitch went in that the audience could picture our opening clearly in their heads and understood what we were trying to put across; this was clear to us as there were no questions at the end. Also, we were happy with the flow as we had practised a couple of times before and so knew when we had to come in to speak. On the other hand, if Emelia and I were to perform our pitch again we would try doing it without the cue cards and by doing so would be more inclined to look up and make eye contact with the audience; this would help with our nerves.

Although Emelia and I had no questions or points of criticism raised after our pitch, when beginning our intricate planning we had a discussion with our teacher and have altered our storyline slightly….

Rather than beginning with a shot of a young girl in her bedroom, Emelia and I have decided to begin with an establishing shot of the icy, isolated field. We have decided to do this as we belief it creates the mysterious tone that we are aiming for and we have also noticed that in various other thriller films they begin with an isolated shot in order to display that the characters are alone. We also believe that it will add aesthetic to our opening. From here, we shall then cut to a shot showing a girl (around the age of 5)  in her bedroom. We shall still then show her looking out of her bedroom window into the icy field. Once again, we shall keep the next shot the same as we show the young girl playing with her toys. However, instead of the young girl calling for her mum, we have decided to have the phone ring and for the young girl to notice her mothers absence through the phone call. She shall call for her mum when the person on the phone asks to speak to her and the from here we shall show her looking round the house calling for her mum. After this, we shall show the young girl pulling on her wellington boots and opening the backdoor. She shall then begin to walk/skip towards the field. We shall then cut to the same dolly shot in order to reveal the dead and icy foot of her mother. From here, we shall show the motionless body of the mother and tilt up to show the young girl looking down on her mother with a shocked, confused and upset expression on her face. We have decided to stick with the tilt and to tilt further upwards to show a mysterious man towering over the young girl. To finish off our opening sequence, we shall tilt further upwards to show the title in the sky.

We have altered our storyline slightly as we believe that this improved version shall flow better and will help our film to create a mysterious tone. We also believe that our new storyline allows our opening to fit within the thriller genre better as it features more aspects that we have seen in thriller films watched such as Dead Silence.

Screenplay Version 2…

For the second version of our screenplay, Emelia and I took on board the various points of feedback from our friends, family and teacher. We altered our punctuation, including apostrophes, and some of our wording that before did not make sense. Emelia and I have also decided to go along with our teacher’s idea of using ‘Teddy Bear’s Picnic’ as a song for our character to sing rather than ‘Row Row Row Your Boat’ as it is creepier and will fit with the genre and mood of our film better. The largest difference between our first and second version is the length. Our version two is somewhat longer; this is because Emelia and I included the various pieces of plot that we had previously forgotten. With the added plot, we had to once again get feedback from our friends, family and teachers. For this version, our feedback was much more positive. People said that they could imagine our film opening clearly. They also agreed with the route that we had chosen for our characters. Emelia and I were happy with our version two but still did not have a title for our film. We planned to compose our own score but time pressures have led us to reconsider this idea…



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Research into Conventions of a Script

So that Emelia and I could create a realistic and professional looking script, we looked into the codes and conventions of a script/screenplay. Here is what Emelia found…

In order to have the best possible script we decided to research the codes and conventions of a professional script. We found the website writersstore.com extremely helpful in learning the format of a script because it clearly shows how everything should be later out and what everything means.
However, when we first tried to write a script we didn’t particularly research because we thought that it wouldn’t be as important as some other things that we had to do. This led to a terrible first version of the script that included nothing but dialogue. When we asked people about this the overall feedback was that it was confusing and they didn’t understand what was going in with the story.
After that feedback we decided to try again and make it a bit more complicated. We researched film scripts and looked at a few real life scripts from movies that we had seen and so we decided to try and mimic these as much as possible. These were better and people understood them more but it still didn’t look like we had made a film script. So we decided that version 2 wasn’t as good as it could be so we decided to do further research about exactly how film scripts are made.
We spent a long time looking at different diagrams that showed what scripts should look like but we couldn’t really replicate it. Then we discovered a website called WriterDuet in which we can both be on different computers and collaborate with each other on the script. Not only did this make it easier but WriterDuet also has features that make it much easier to write a professional screenplay and so we decided to use this. Along with the information from writersstore.com we think we successfully researched all the codes and conventions of a script and we are happy with the way our screenplay turned out.

“Codes and Conventions Of A Screenplay:
Dialogue, what the characters say is the main aspect of the script, must be exact

Stage directions, must be short and concise and will tell the actors exactly what their character is doing

Order, the script must start with a title, then an explanation of the scene, then a brief summary of the characters

Enter/Exit, all entrances and exits must be clearly shown

INT/EXT, stand for interior and exterior, they show where the scene is taking place, inside or outside

They are just a few of the main things we learned in our research about the conventions of a script.”