Texas Chainsaw Massacre Trailer Analysis

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Information about Texas Chainsaw Massacre Trailer Analysis
Education

Published on March 13, 2014

Author: Uzzynator

Source: slideshare.net

Trailer Analysis: Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2013 Usman Sabir

Shots: 0:00 – 1:00 • The trailer firstly starts off with the Motion Picture Association of America certificate with listed film rating similar to the BBFC Certificate in Britain. • The trailer commences with non digetic music with the showing of Lionsgate and Millennium films, distributors and production companies. • The non digetic music (Johnny Cash The Beast in Me) gives a soothing tone until the lyrics start and suggest the genre as the lyrics are linked to the trailer. The trailer and music have a link as when the Man in black says “the beast in me is caged by frail and fragile bars” the trailer in matched synchronisation shows black bars that protect the house. This already hints to the idea this is a slasher film due to the haunted house references and an untamed horror the group of teens are about to experience. • Note that the car is shot at a high angle shot suggesting that the group of teens are vulnerable and inferior to whatever inhabits the area behind the black gates already suggesting that they are prey for the killer. • The fact that the final girl is with her friends automatically uses Vladimir Propps Fairytale narrative as her friends are the group of benefactors as stated in the narrative criteria. • Note that the codes and conventions of Slashers within the first 30 seconds of the film trailer can be applied as there are the typical teens having a “good time” some of which suggest sexual activity as shown by the girl wearing a pink bra within the beginning seconds of the film, the generic haunted house and stalker. The trailer is looking formulaic and generic to conventional slashers within the genre. • The teens have left home also which allows the Fairytale narrative of Vladimir Propps theory to be applied showing how formulaic this trailer is turning out to be.

Shots: 0:00 – 1:00 • The next shots uses Mise En Scene as using composition and the theory of “everything on scene” we can tell the teens are imprisoned or incarcerated in this house as the staircase barriers represent jail bars and the camera is already in a stalker like position hiding behind cover. This shot is a voyeuristic type as the teens can be seen but the camera/killer can not, this hints to the fact that this may be a Point of View shot to show the killer perspective and bring on empathy for the teens as they are being observed in a predator like fashion from a high angle shot which suggests that they are the weaker beings when they enter the house of the kller/leatherface. This use of Mise En scene is a referential code in which it informs or explains the narrative to the audience according to Roland Barthes narrative codes. • The film then utilises a major attention grabber in the cast and hints to the demographic of the film which is teenagers as Trey Songz a R&B artist plays as Ryan this is a marketing type of shot as the artist is clearly recognisable and there are film goers who will purchase tickets of a film purely due to the cast e.g. Tom Cruise or Johnny Depp. This technique of using singers and celebrities in film is not new as Paris Hilton a major celebrity was in the film “The House Of Wax” which generated over $70,000,000. Using that statistic it is clear why director use a star studded cast as teenagers will pay up to see a favourite singer etc. • There is also social questioning at play here in the following shots as of the teens suggest they are clearly ready to capitalise of of Heather’s grandmas assets regardless of blood relation or not and also there is a shot of Nikki smoking, this is starting social debate and questioning of teens carelessness and parasitical nature in terms of materialism etc e.g Money, big houses but not determined enough to earn it themselves (not all but some) this is shown when characters later in the film decide to try and steal Heather possessions in the house.

Shots 0:00 - 1:00 • The audience then realise parts of the narrative as using matched composition in the painting we see that heather is related to the owners of the house. • Then the non digetic music stops, using Tzeylan Todorov’s theory of Equilibrium this suggests a disruption in the established equilibrium and the beginning of a unbalanced equilibrium. We are now beginning to see the action code (Roland Barthes) as we see the trespasser get killed by Leatherface. The action code depicts the events which take place within the narrative. It could also be an enigma code which sets up a potential mystery for Heather to solve leading unto finally its resolution. • In the next shot captions appear stating “in 1974 a legend was born” with a black fade out between each caption, this is formulaic with slasher trailers. There are sharp white lens flashes to shock the viewers due to the high contrast of colours, typical of slashers to invoke shock in the viewer and usually prepares audience for a fastened tone within the trailer as we see in the following. • We can already hear a digetic chainsaw which follows onward to show how typical or formulaic this film is when compared to similar slashers as there is a masked killer which preys on the fear of the unknown and an improvised weapon, one which was manufactured without killing in mind hence why these types of weapons are feared within the audience as the killer uses the environment as his/hers weapon not predictable arms like Guns for example. • Using the date of the orignal film and clearly showing Leatherface, the trailer also appeals to fans of the original film and the new widened audience of 2013 via the reboot.

Shots 1:01 – 2:16 • The shots eventually speed up with a distinct flicker sound of a chainsaw being repeatedly looped in gory moments with the non digetic music moving up in pitch to create suspense and anticipation • The next fast series of shots involve a reverse tracking shot used on Heather which is a very subjective shot as it focuses on one person and cuts out or eliminates any background, this can be used to really amplify the expressions or emotions of one character. This is also known as the “Hitchcock zoom”. • One of the shots clearly state as a caption “This January”, this is a good marketing technique as it gets the release month embedded in the viewer as the trailer has already got their attention. • In a space of 9 seconds after that one shot is allocated to each second of the trailer amplifying and exaggerating the pace of the trailer, something I have seen consistently throughout my analysis of slasher trailers as a convention • The action or gory shots use the distinct chainsaw buzz sound which the audience already knows what that means upon auditory recognition, this is used for each gory shot onwards with all other ambience or digetic sound cancelled out except the victim’s screams which works well to generate suspense and get the viewers in grossed into the trailer to find out what happens next. • The trailer concludes with the title, production and distribution card but not an ending card and uses marketing and web 2.0 and the word of mouth effect to maximise profit via the website and facebook page link.

Shots 1:01 – 2:16 • The shots eventually speed up with a distinct flicker sound of a chainsaw being repeatedly looped in gory moments with the non digetic music moving up in pitch to create suspense and anticipation • The next fast series of shots involve a reverse tracking shot used on Heather which is a very subjective shot as it focuses on one person and cuts out or eliminates any background, this can be used to really amplify the expressions or emotions of one character. This is also known as the “Hitchcock zoom”. • One of the shots clearly state as a caption “This January”, this is a good marketing technique as it gets the release month embedded in the viewer as the trailer has already got their attention. • In a space of 9 seconds after that one shot is allocated to each second of the trailer amplifying and exaggerating the pace of the trailer, something I have seen consistently throughout my analysis of slasher trailers as a convention • The action or gory shots use the distinct chainsaw buzz sound which the audience already knows what that means upon auditory recognition, this is used for each gory shot onwards with all other ambience or digetic sound cancelled out except the victim’s screams which works well to generate suspense and get the viewers in grossed into the trailer to find out what happens next. • The trailer concludes with the title, production and distribution card but not an ending card and uses marketing and web 2.0 and the word of mouth effect to maximise profit via the website and facebook page link.

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