With my last post I explained about the new direction I was taking with my project, since I started I had to figure out what film I was going to create. In a journal I hold many stories that I have thought of over the years, these can come from spur of the moment ideas, to discussions I will be having with someone that day. Nether the less these ideas are always there in my time of need. Although I never use the stories exactly how they are written down, I take different aspects from two or three, normally this makes somewhat of a Frankenstein’s monster film, built from many ideas.
This film was no different.
Coming away with around 3 different films I had figured a somewhat of a coherent story, when discussing it with Aden I think I made his head spin a little, as with each day I would be coming up with plot changes or new ideas. This is usual for me but I can imagine a little unusual for other people. The story seemed to me always lacking something so I was forever going back, changing ideas and trying to make ends meet in regards to plot details. I am happy to say now however that I have come to something that I am very proud of, here is a short synopsis of the film without me having to explain it in full:
Hearing is Believing
William, a 42-year-old sound recordist that quietly seems to be out-of-place, half to
choice, the other to an alienation that comes from something a lot deeper than social
popularity or acceptance. It’s in fact understanding or more so hoping there is
something else out there, answers that go beyond human understanding. Living in a
world that is run by a singular cooperation known as the State, who see fit to control
every aspect of your life, William will finally meet what he is looking for one night
alone in his flat. However what he meets isn’t from this world nor doesn’t play by
There are to major aspects to my film that I will be looking at, one is going towards my overall module out come, the other being more of a personal project/test. For the module it will be sound, I had great difficulty when it came to writing the script. My main protocol when writing the script is that I have the look/colors/camera shots already in my head, so when I write I imagine sitting watching the story unfold. With this script I had to come from a different yet more interesting angle. I had to look at it through sound, not only the feeling but how to include it so it became important if not more important than the visuals. I have always made it aware that when choosing sound I didn’t want to be looking directly at the technical aspect side too heavily, I wanted to incorporate it in my directorial style. I have spoken heavily on this need/want to understand my own personal style, and to do this I would look at image system, sound is just another part of this.
Going with this idea of sound I really had to break away any idea of visuals and trust my ears. In a way this was an easy process as I knew I had both Rob. S & Rob. M as well as Ciara looking after how the visuals would look, I felt the film, visually was in good hands. This really freed up some time with how I would go about it.
Understanding the story and overall feeling I knew this film would be built up with intensity, it would require both use of sound and not using it, understanding this I really had to keep a rhythm going through my script. Amping up the terror through sound as time went by. This took a lot of time, I felt the need to try to give as little as possible without spoiling the audience or being to secretive.
I guess the way I feel about it is if you give them a strong/revealing starting point you have to progress with more, so to go in strong would only hinder my ability to create tension. Besides this isn’t your typical jump scare at loud noise sort of deal.
(Friday the 13th, 1980)
Although it would have been easy to include tons of audio techniques within my film I had to realize that the film had to be
- Had to be done in a certain amount of time.
- Had to be exciting for the audience.
I am a great believer that less is more.
The other side I wanted to look at, that isn’t for any brief/module but for my own interests is the fine line between comedy & tragedy. When I first came to writing this script it was originally a horror. For a while now I have wanted to create an anthology of horror films under ‘A Midnight Special’. As the script progressed however the character of William seemed tragically funny, it was easy to be both fearful for him, as well as having the ability to laugh at him. With this came a new twist on the script. Looking back I started studying other films that had dealt with such a genre, the only problem I had was fitting this in 20-30 minutes.
(Shaun of the Dead, 2004)
It seemed to dawn on me just how massive this project was becoming, excitement was their alongside terror that I couldn’t get it done. Maybe my life is a fine line of comedy and tragedy? Or maybe I am just dramatic? All seem to be viable options.
Frankenstein. (1931). [film] USA: James Whale.
Friday the 13th. (1980). [film] USA: Sean S. Cunningham.
Shaun of the Dead. (2004). [film] United Kingdom: Edgar Wright.