Analysis Part Deux
“Clown Train” was brilliant in its use of diegetic sounds to create a super tense and uneasy atmosphere. The beginning especially with the uncomfortable screeching of the train’s brakes allowed for a good set up. There was quite a lack of non-diegetic sound, the sound of the lights flickering also within the world of the film. Silence and long pauses also boosted the tense unease Clown Train brought to its audience. A great example of this kind of horror is any classic Japanese horror film or just classic J-horror in general. One example that comes to mind is a television series titled “Ghost Stories From Japan” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3tcIhrs1ifw). They always use a dead silence before a scare, that’s how you know something is about to happen.
The whole reading on sound was an instant hit right away. I’ve always thought sound to be the most important part of a film. The reading titled “Creating the Sound design” I was smacked immediately with this common sensical truth bomb across the face; “one sound can be added to another without displacement.” and it’s so true. Film can be overwhelming to people sometimes, most people attribute it to the phenomenon of an ‘influx of visual stimuli”. The truth is, is that to get a clear picture of something you need to get rid of the image directly preceding it first and you can’t say the same for sound. An example that pops into mind right now is the 1971 “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” in the scene where they take the boat through that tripshow of a tunnel. There are a quick flash of images but that’s the extent that image can bring to enhance this clearly frantic moment. It’s the quick non-diegetic strings, the diegetic screams and protests of the passengers and finally Wonka’s totally insane monologue about misdirection. Sound can’t be blocked out, you can close your eyes but if you shut your ears, you can always still hear something. And that’s why I love sound.
I’m going to assume the Rolling short was the one with the toilet paper? If so I really liked a lot of things about it but like everything, nothing is perfect. First of all, the writing was very well done, 95% of the dialogue was necessary without stringing along too much. The set up to the punch line was pleasant drop. The establishing shot of all the toilet paper and finally the build up to the punch line was written in good order. Another thing I liked about it was the lead actor, he captured the overall tone and really understood what character trait he needed to adopt to get the right tone as the specific type of writing, I feel could’ve only been executed one way. On the opposite end of the scale the actress/love interest was a little gawky. I felt like she was over-acting a little and her bubbly, very smiley stares seemed to contradict to her eagerness to come into the protagonists apartment, which is a trait to usually quirkier characters. I also think more shots could’ve been taken, the shot variation was also quite bland. I think they could’ve added more angles and sped up the editing a little.