The Grudge Essay Example
The Grudge Essay Example

The Grudge Essay Example

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Are the openings of 'Sleepy Hollow' and 'The Grudge' effective openings for Horror films?'The Grudge' and 'Sleepy hollow' are both films which fall under the genre of horror.

The director of the grudge was Sam Raimi but he also received help from Takeshi Shinizu the director from the original Grudge in which they have used the same house in which 'The Grudge' was based in. Sam Raimi has directed many horror movies before such as 'Darkman' and the classical horror 'Evil dead' so this movie was not the first horror movie he had done before. In 'The Grudge' Sarah Michelle Geller plays the role of the main character 'Karen Davis'. Sarah Michelle Geller is more associated with the horror genre especially after her hit TV series 'Buffy The Vampire Slayer' which ran for 7 seasons.


For People who new Sarah Michelle Geller from 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' and had not seen the original grudge would build up the superstition of thinking that the plot to the movie would revel her to kill the 'Monster' because she was a monster killer in 'Buffy The Vampire Slayer'.

I think that she was good for this role because she is well know to be fighting monsters and wining but this time she would be fighting monsters but to die towards the end which would be a contrast to her usual role..'Sleepy Hollow' was directed by Tim Burton who had recently directed two films 'Corpse Bride' and 'Charlie and the chocolate factory. With all three movies starring Johnny Depp as main characters.

Tim Burton tends to stick to hiring the same actors such as Johnny Depp who was firs

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hired by him when he was only a child. Johnny Depp has stared in many of his films like 'Edward sicssorhands' and of course 'Sleepy Hollow'.What make's horror movies frightening is sound and it's editing techniques. I mean you can close your eye's in which you are trying to 'hide' from the movie but u can still hear the sound of some one screaming and being attacked which can be very terrifying. Not only is it the sound effects that makes a horror movie scary but the music can add to the horror of the movie for example the horror pieces jaws and physco are remembered because it scared a generation with its sound's. Not only is the sound effective but the editing techniques is too for example in 'Freddy Vs.

Jason' by using a jump cut to a close up of Jason's face made many people jump out of their seats in sudden shock. I think that horror movies are aimed at teenagers who would go to the cinema, and they would get more of a thrillfrom it more than adults. Horror movies historically have been made in times of trouble such as in the 60's when a lot of horror movies were being made such as Frankenstein. Horror movies historically are not only made during times of trouble but they reflects on major things at the time for example when the mummy of king Tutankhamun was found a lot of horror movie were made then such as 'The curse of the mummy'.

I am going to show that the openings of 'The Grudge' and 'Sleepy Hollow' are both very effective beginnings for horror films

because they both use the conventions associated with this type of movie.I am going to look and judge how the openings make the audience feel in the two movies.The very begging of 'Sleepy Hollow' starts with the opening credits with eerie music which is slow laced with high pitched noise which appears to be a women's voice which is very effective for this genre because it creates a 'chilling' feeling with in the audience. The opening credit is very effective by using the technique of writing in white on black showed up on smoke and then fades away. I think that this is a good way of presenting the opening the credits because it adds coldness and creepiness to the already creepy mood.In 'The Grudge' the way the opening credits where showed where also a very good and effective way to show the credits.

By having writing appear and then as it appears it then highlights the 'emotive' word in the sentence make the audience concentrate on that word and makes them ask questions on why have they highlighted that word? Is it significant? For example in an opening sentence the 'emotive' word highlighted is 'curse' which is highlighted in red which symbolises blood and is generally related to horror genre. It starts with a establishing shot of the city as it pans to a man looking out on balcony with the diagetic sound of traffic and people from there it then cuts to a medium close up of a women waking up in bed. It then cuts back to the man looking around and then using a jump cut t goes back to the

women lying in bed. From there it cuts back again to the man whilst he looks a bit shifty which represents that there's something wrong with him which is the start of Barthes Ingmar theory and cuts back to the woman at a medium shot who is asking "what's wrong?" .It then cuts back to a long shot of the room and shows the man jumping over the balcony and then straight into a POV (point of view) shot of the man falling from the balcony.

This then places the audience into the man's view of falling with the diagetic sound of a impacting thud as he hits the floor. It then jumps to the POV of the woman who is looking over the balcony to the dead body of the man who is on the floor dead; this is an extreme long shot. The non-diagetic music is from here introduced as there is a pan of the now dead man in which it goes to fade. This opening sequence of the grudge uses Barthes enigma theory for this opening makes the audience ask questions such as who was that man? Why did he jump off the balcony and kill himself? Most horror movies start off by making the audience ask loads of questions as this is an effective way to get the audience engaged from the beginning.

Near enough all horror movie's start by using Barthes enigma theory.The second part of the opening in 'Sleepy Hollow' uses Barthes enigma theory in which it shows the signing of a document (A will). But after this it show Van Garret in a coach. The bit which

I will analyse will be the part just before he runs through the corn fields because this shows well how an opening can build suspense and an audience's expectations successfully.

I will start from when the coach driver looks rather worried and concerned about something (Barthes enigma theory) and starts to speed up. From here cuts to Van Garret in the coach look away from the carriage window as a silowet of a man oh a horse goes by this gives the audience a what was that question in the mind. (Yet another case of Barthes enigma theory) The audience can now hear diagetic horse noises and then the noise of a sword unsheathing and then the coach driver starts making a bumping noise.It now starts a jaw like theme tune which is non-diagetic.

By doing this it builds up the audience's expectations of something bad to happen but the audience don't quite know when or what.It cuts to an mls of a headless driver as Van Garret Pokes his head out the coach and looks at a headless driver. The cuts now start to speed up in this section of the opening or the part called 'The corn field' so that it helps to build tension and expectations and shows the confusion and the hurrying of the moment because many things are happening. So it then cuts to Van Garret jumping out of the coach and then cuts to him rolling and back to the driver and cut back to Van Garret in the corn field. Now there's a tracking shot of van Garret this basically helps us to share this quite scary moment

with Van Garret. It then goes to a cut of Van Garrets POV which pans fast to represent the confusion and fear which Van Garret is feeling and allows the audience to feel the same.

From there it Cuts to a low angle (LA) shot of the scare crow which makes it look very big and a HA POV of the scare crow which makes Van Garret to appear very small. Van Garret now has a look of relief on his face in which it the cuts to a POV of u as some or the suspected villain who is watching Van Garret and then the diagetic sound of a sword unsheathed and then cut to a ECU of Scarecrow and then the lightning and the blood splatter across the face of the scarecrow and then lightning to end the scene.Both films were classified as a 15 in the U.K although I may agree with this but in some country's these films were classified as 18's.

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