Hi, I'm an AS Media student, and this blog contains research into the different aspects of film and media, specializing in the Slasher genre. The research has all been put towards the development of my coursework production 'Camp Ivy', which I co-produced with Poppy and Millie. Our coursework has been influenced by the rural locations and mise-en-scene in Friday the 13th and Eden Lake.

Friday, 1 February 2013

Slasher Overview Vodcast Notes

Psycho (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960)
40 shots in 50 seconds. Early example of archetypes - sexually confused killer, scream queen, 'slasher' refers to killing of knife.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Redefined genre. Violence starts instantly, compared to psycho. Realistic violence, more gore and nudity, low budget (+Last House on the Left)

Black Christmas.
Pays for one location - shrinks budget. First film John Saxon appears in - unknown to go on to Nightmare on Elm St. Halloween influenced by BC. Use of camera as killers pov, audience becomes killer. Technique also used in Peeping Tom. Motivation is never revealed - narrative enigma.

BC, TCM and Psycho -all had remakes. TCM + Psycho have sequels.

Little blood or graphic violence. Compared to Saw and Psycho = contrast. No major stars were featured. Jamie Lee Curtis also stars in Terror Train and Prom Night - post Halloween films. Her mother was the scream queen in Psycho.

Friday the 13th
Sequels released - 12 films altogether.

Carole Clover devised the final girl concept.

Sydeny Prescott in Scream, childish bedroom and clothing and is doing her homework which signifies academia.

Physiological effects - raising heartbeat, subconciously holding breath.
Increase fear and tension. Commutation test - imagine shower scene in Psycho - would it be scary without music? No music would dull the scene. Auter theory.
Peeping Tom (Michael Powell, 1960)
Proto-slasher. Audience view the killers view (pov).

Post modern - New Nightmare (Wes Craven), Scream, Scary Movie
  • Intertextuality taken to the extreme.
  • Hybrids.
New Nightmare - slasher about a slasher (Self-referential).

Different genres attract different people. Primary and secondary target audience. Death of a Stranger rated 12 - puts people off as they want to see gory, violent films. Mature youth (primary audience) - 25-34. Secondary audience - 15-24, 35+?, lanugage is appropriate, older characters are useless.
Halloween is an exception to Todorovs equilibrium theory (no new equilibrium), sequel is a follow on from the previous events.
False scares partially demonstrate hybridity - comedy/slasher genre.

50's and 60's most horror was gothic or creature features (universal). Hammer Horror dominant worldwide in the 60's - main characters were upper-class, mature adults. Theatrical/stagey whereas Last House on the Left, Black Christmas, TCM were filmed with portable cameras - shakey camera work and ultra realistic design.
Peeping Tom and Psycho in 1960 - PT runied career of Michael Powell as people though it was 'sick' so the slasher genre didnt catch on until the 70's with films like Halloween and TCM.

Blair Witch Project - early example of viral marketing. Started a new genre - 'found footage'.

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