Analyis/ Reflection 2 – “Sound Design”

Clown Train – Sound Design

The sound design used in the film Clown Train creates an eerie, somewhat disturbing feeling whilst developing anticipation over the sequence of shots. The use of diegetic sounds such as a train drawing to an end as well as sounds associated to mechanical failure draw attention to the characters’ presence inside the train. The camera work also contributes to reiterating the space of the train by filming from the outside of the train and looking in on the characters. The sound is also altered to appear as though you are looking into the train when the camera is outside of the train. Additionally, an electric zapping sound is used to build anticipation as well as division between shots – where the clown repositions himself closer to the other character when the zapping sound occurs and the train lights falter. The zapping sound forms a motif throughout the shot sequence and the viewer expects for the clown to move in on the other character whenever the sound strikes.

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The Ring also enhances sounds within its filmic space to build anticipation and an element of fear. A scene comes to mind where a character is in his warehouse apartment and nothing particularly out of the ordinary is happening – however the soundscape draws attention to his presence within the apartment and creates anticipation within the scene through enhancing focal and field sounds.


Below is an excerpt from The Ring from a notably ‘chilling’ scene that has been edited to have no sound. I find that watching the excerpt without sound looses the sequence’s intensity and it becomes evident how important sound is in creating anticipation and an awareness of fear.

This also relates back to what Alten suggests in his paper, ‘Creating the Sound Design’ when he tells that sound in film can have the ability to “Affect aural perception” (6).


Rolling, Student Film – Analysis

The student film, Rolling seemed to work well within the limitations of the constrained task. The film used a simple yet effective plot with appropriate casting that carried the film’s narrative. The film had a good selection of locations that was feasible for the production of the project. Another aspect that I found worked well was that the dialog was minimal and many things were conveyed through acting or camera work. Having watched the short film a few weeks ago now, my memory isn’t too sharp on the specifics; however, I remember thinking some of the camera angles weren’t consistent e.g. the space above the character’s heads differed. All in all, I think the short film was entertaining, well rounded and that the students worked well within the set perimeters.


Creating the Sound – Reading Reflection

Creating the sound design. In Alten, S. Audio in media, (p.266-286). Belmont: Wadsworth, 1994.

Alten’s article titled, ‘Creating the Sound Design’, informs how sound can assist in conveying the narrative by preloading what is to come (7). In the article, Alten speaks of how countless aspects of sound recording can have implications on the narrative. Additionally, Alten speaks of how the sound producer may design the sound in various mediums to convey a number of feelings. Alten also highlights the extensive detail and consideration sound designer emplace to convey meaning.


The Rebirth of Vampires in Contemporary Media and Their Cultural Implications

Vampires have made a media revival in recent years with popular television shows, films and novels including True blood, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The Vampire Diaries and Twilight and heap more. Additionally, the dominant fan-base for the modern vampire genre has shifted to teenagers. They can’t get enough of the stuff. However, the resurgence of the well-liked vampire genre raises questions about the cultural implications on their primary audience.

Dracula meme


So what is it about teenagers and vampires?


The positioning of vampires in modern media shows them trying to integrate themselves into society – resisting their blood thirst to kill and generally just trying to fit in at Forks High or Merlotte’s Bar and Grill. Within these fictitious yet relatable settings, the vampire’s hunger for true love prevails along with their desire as a minority to be accepted in their community. In this light, it is notable that the primary motivations for the vampire antagonists form parallels with teenager’s desires for romance and to be accepted for themselves.


The highly sexually charged narratives also focus on vampires enforcing self-control in order to resist their intense and instinctive blood lust to kill (which would ultimately end in devastation). Could this not be a metaphor for teenagers to resist their firsthand sexual desires in order to avoid catastrophe? Or in Twilight’s case, until after your Mormon wedding…

Twiilight wedding Image sourced from:

 A research paper titled, ‘The Resurgence of Vampires and Vampires in Fan Discourse in Contemporary Popular Culture’ tells, “Despite the characters’ love and desire for their mortal beloved, their protracted struggle to suppress the desire and resist the temptation of bloodlust to protect their partners from harm is implicitly encouraging teenagers who are experiencing their first stirrings of desires, to employ self-control on dangerous sexual and aggressive impulses”.


Another present similarity between vampires and their teenage fans is the longing to break away from their disguise or protective shell to be accepted, fit in amoungst their peers whilst maintaining their own identity within society.


It is all just a self recognising, coming of age, sexy blood bath really.


Anyway, here is Buffy kicking Edward’s stone cold but.

Buffy vs Edward: Twiilight Remix (original version)

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