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Here is the outside panel of my digipak album cover.

Here is the outside panel of my digipak album cover.

Here is the inside panel of my digipak album cover.

Here is the inside panel of my digipak album cover.

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Monday, 5 September 2016

Hw 2c - Sound in film openings (DYM)


The Dark Knight (2008) Film Opening Analysis (0:00-2:20)

  • Silence as studio title cards play through neon blue light; establishes comic book genre, whilst also hinting through the omission of upbeat 'heroic' soundtrack that the tone of the film will be darker than the average movie inn the comic book genre.
  • Long, drawn out screech of a cello is heard over a zoom towards a glass building; establishes an eerie tone to the city, even though the visuals show us nothing out of the ordinary; non diegetic music builds tension and hints to the audience that something bad is about to happen.
  • Ticking sound is added to the soundtrack which adds to the foreboding of the opening shot.
  • Music is interrupted with the sound of a smashing glass as the zooming shot ends with one of the windows being blown out with a harpoon; the non diegetic music creates a voyeurism (the audience feels like a spectator outside the movie), then the diegetic sound effect instantaneously sucks the audience into being 'involved' with the movie. 
  • As the 'clown goon' sets up the harpoon, the methodical clicking of the machine and the sound of the harpoon firing are heard. The sound effects are not 'everyday' sounds, and this unfamiliarity couples well with the omission of familiar human faces, which are covered by clown masks; this pulls the audience into the world of these criminals and introduces us into seeing the opening from their perspective.
  • The cello music returns as the film cuts to a long shot of a man standing on the curb of a street turned away from the camera as it zooms in on the clown mask he is holding. The sound of the cello is now established from the opening shot as being a non diegetic signal for something bad; the audience thus gets an uneasy feeling about this character. The grating, out of place texture of the cello screech also foregrounds the absurdity of the mask on the ordinary street to add to the audience's intrigue of the opening of the story (Who are these people? What are they going to do? Why do they wear the masks?)
  • Again, the cello screech is interrupted by the screech of car tyres - the interruption of diegetic sounds over the non diegetic soundtrack could be described as an action code for this film (something the audience learns to expect)
  • The soundtrack grows in texture with the addition of drums; this adds further tension onto the scene.
  • Dialogue begins inside the car with the three clown goons, who discuss (over the top of the sounds of guns being loaded and the wheels of the car) the number of shares they are going to have; this sets up the story details and hints at the bank heist to follow and establishes a crime-drama genre. The sound effects on top provide more intrigue into the world of these criminals for the audience; these sounds are beginning to sound common place.
  • "Don't forget the guy who planned the job." "He thinks he can sit it out and still take a slice. I know why they call him the Joker." - the dialogue is our first introduction to the film's antagonist. It establishes that at the beginning of the film, the Joker is not well respected by the people in the film. However, there is intertextuality in hearing the name 'Joker' as he is an infamous pop culture villain; by introducing the antagonist through dialogue rather than a visual introduction relies on the audience's pre-gathered knowledge of the character to incite tension - tension that is achieved whenever the character's mention the Joker.
  • More dialogue from the goons on the roof to establish the Joker: "[he wears makeup] to scare people. You know, war paint." This provides story detail later down the line for the reveal of the Joker at the end of the scene.
  • The soundtrack is low in volume, foregrounding the sounds of the door to the bank opening, the rushed footsteps of the goons on the floor - both of which are commonplace to the audience - before the loud bang of a gun being fired and the yells of the bankers breaks the familiarity of the soundscape; this does not necessarily cause shock to the audience, as the opening has been devoted solely to the criminal's perspective, but it does however cause the audience to re-evaluate whose side they're on. This is a major story point in the film, as the film challenges who the enemy really is.
  • Over a soundscape of screaming, a goon shout "Alright everybody, hands up, heads down"; the command sounds very routine, establishing that Gotham city is often subjected to terror attacks of this nature and has grown akin to the interruptions of criminals (just like the audience has been)
Director: Christopher Nolan

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