This is for Industrial Media assignment.
In the film Clown Train, its sound makes very considerable contributions to the atmosphere. In the beginning of the short film, I merely hear the sound of a train but no visual image, that makes me pay attention to use ears figuring out where the story begins. Then sound-effects come up, also I hear the voices from characters. Great opening! It sets a basic tone which audiences feel dark, and cold. In addition, ambient sounds of this film appear so properly in both terms of psychology and technology. I can feel thrill due to these ambient sounds are merged in right time, and used perfectly to match up the cut joints. The use of sound combination is quite mature, and it makes me recall some pretty good low budget horror films, such as Conjuring and Saw by Jams Wan, or Japanese horror films like Ju-On and Ringu. I am also very interested in the use of silence. In the film Clown Train, there is no music used, and silence is inserted in some parts. Sometimes I think using silence beautifully is much harder than use of sound. We all recognize that music and ambient sounds help a lot of getting a mood. However, in some case, silence enable to reinforce tones like nerves, creepy feeling, peace, reality, or a feeling inside the role. I referred some movies, and found that the art of silence is widely used in various genres. For instance, in the 1998 war movie Saving Private Ryan, captain Miller is blown up and briefly deaf. He watches soldiers engulfed in flame, a man retrieving his arm and we hear: “ what now, sir?” I recalled the cunningest scene in the action movie Mission: Impossible, which Ethan Hunt is hung to take a disc, and audiences can’t hear nothing. I found that the art of silence is used in most of Martin Scorsese’s films such as Hugo, The Departed, and Raging Bull.
Considering this is a low budget project, the capturing of voices from characters is great. I notice how good it is. In the early this semester, we used sound mixer and Sony Z5 in course industrial media, and after having made some mistakes, we found that collecting sound do need skills and concentration.
Take the visual aspects. This short film looks quite professional in term of framing. The angles of shots are diverse, and that can relief visual fatigue and foster the images dynamic. Lighting is dull and its source are mainly form train itself, which builds sense of inauspicious. It successfully makes me feel creepy. Clown Train’s color is gray, low contrast, and low saturation, for a horror film that is exactly suitable for. Finally, as a 5 minutes short film by students, the story is simple, manageable but professional. The capabilities of students are shown by one turing point, a set and one event.