Thursday, 28 January 2010

RESEARCH:How is suspense created in the film The Stepfather

In class we watched “The Stepfather” which is a thriller film and consists of many suspenseful scenes and tense situations such as;

Example one: 
The first suspenseful moment I saw was from the beginning of the movie where we see “David” transform his appearance by altering his hair colour and from having a fully grown beard to a very clean shave. This is shown by several numbers of close ups, the first thing we see is his tools as the camera slowly panes across it, this creates suspense for the audience and makes them think. We are also shown quite a lot of close ups of the different parts of his body, for instance when he shaves and accidently slips and cuts himself, another example would be when he puts on the blue coloured contact lenses on. The audience are shown these specifics to make them think what this man is up to and raise questions in their head building the tension. I also believe that the non digetic sound/s have the same affect because it sounds spooky and mysterious it all adds up to the suspense.

As he then comes downstairs the song "silent night" is played. He makes breakfast and all seems good until we see the camera tilt on to a little dead boy sitting on a chair with his head on the table. This to me shows the contrast of the sweet calm song to the terrible murder of the boy. We then are exposed to more dead bodies.
Finally just before he leaves the house he has a flash back and the audience can see a girl screaming and sadly that is all we see leaving the audience to figure he is a murderer.

Example 2:
 The second suspenseful moment would be when Mrs Cutter the old vulnerable lady was murdered this shot is through her point of view which makes us jump when we see the cat jump out of the blue. We see what she sees which adds to the effect as well, this point of view shot makes Mrs Cutter vulnerable and makes it seem likes she is being watched, we are automatically expecting this to be David, and sadly we are right as he stands behind Mrs Cutter while she shuts the storage door and we see him in the mirror this is an over the shoulder shot. We see her struggle to get away from him, unfortunately she is pushed down the basement and then is suffocated to death.    

Example 3:
The final suspenseful moment for me was towards the end when Susan enters the kitchen and asks him what's going on and why he is shouting. He tells her that he can't take it anymore and wanted her to be Mrs. Grady Andrews, to which she asks him what he said. He then realizes his slip-up and says I meant David Harris, and she screams as she sees him grab a knife. He chases her through the house, as she is screaming Michael is down in the basement struggling to get out. Susan heads into the bathroom and slashes David in the throat with a piece of glass that David throws at her. It looks like he is dead as he falls into the shower and she heads out, backing away and hugs Michael and Kelly. This whole sequence is chaotic with so much happening adding to the suspense.

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