Conventions Question

In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?

The three media products that we have produced for this unit both follow and subvert the conventions of real media products. I think that because we have included most of the conventions that we can see in real media products that are around at the moment. We have also tried to include most of the conventions that we could possibly do to make the trailer, website and poster as realistic as possible.

The Trailer

There are some aspects that are included within our trailer that are in direct relation to that of trailers within the real film industry. Things such as camera effects/angles and some of the shot transitions are relatively the same as well.

Furthermore because the trailer has been made for this project we have included our production logo in the opening scene which is common is most films regardless of the genre.

Start Of Trailer

Start Of Trailer

We have also included the green film rating part at the beginning of the film. This actually isn’t a convention because it is needed in order for it to be viewed by the public but we thought that we would add this into the film because it makes the trailer more realistic and believable for the audience of this film and this is the same for current trailers who have the rating at the beginning of the trailer to let the audience viewing it that it has been accepted as an appropriate film for the genre intended for.

Usually with good and effective horror trailer there is always some sort of phrase or sentence that gets the audience thinking about the contents of the film. I think that we have followed this convention because we have included the phrase “Tense? Nervous? You’ll Remember This Trip…” at the end of our trailer as a sort of cliff hanger. Furthermore we have a small clip in the film where the main character says “follow the sound of my voice!” which instantly entices the audience into thinking “What’s happened?” or “Whose missing?” Therefore this gets the viewers glued into the storyline, just like real trailers do and we have followed this convention.

You'll Remember This Trip....Tense? Nervous?

However there are some aspects which suggest that we have subverted the typical conventions used by horror trailers. A trailer such as The Evil Dead for example uses very quick and sharp transitions to make the viewers jump out of their seats and create fear/danger when watching those scenes. But with our trailer we have used slow and long transitions along with a build up of tension to try and catch the audience off guard and throw something unsuspecting at them such as quick scare. For example there is a section of the trailer where it is all quite and calm with them walking through the forest and then it suddenly changes pace with the camera moving quickly and the sound building up with different music over the top.

Sound Effect Used

Sound Effect Used

Another significant convention that has been subverted is the fact that we have used a bit more text than normal. This is because when looking at a trailer such as Paranormal Activity for example there is text spread out other the length of the video/trailer (shown on various scenes) however this is totally different for our trailer. There is one part that goes on for about 10 – 20 seconds where it is just purely text based and they are “Don’t Underestimate The Forest / From The Producers / Of “A Day In The Life” and this is something that we decide to do because through our understanding of the research, we found that the text is spaced out and gives the audience clips of the trailer but we decided to subvert this convention.

Furthermore this use of text hasn’t been used to separate the trailer into two ways at all. In fact it has been used as a sound bridge because the suspenseful music is being played in the background throughout the whole film to carry the suspense/tension right the way through to the end of the trailer.

Overall, the trailer that we have created follows typical horror trailer to a degree of certainty but there are areas which subvert as well. I actually believe that subverting conventions of a horror trailer is good because it gives the audience something else too remember the product by If the trailer followed and was the same as other trailers then people aren’t going to watch it because they would have seen it all before whereas the subversion or conventions is something that will hopefully stick in their minds because of what the trailer consisted of.

The Website

With regards to the website there is only one real outcome and this will be that the website has followed conventions and there a lot of things that need to be done in order to function correctly. In this case all websites need to include a menu in order for the user to navigate through the website and to get to the other areas/content for the website, several titles for the user to identify the specific page that they are on and what they are reading, along with other various pieces of information.

However for our website we have displayed the titles in different ways and gone for a fixed, drop down menu. The menu is also fixed in place which means that it doesn’t move when the page is scrolled and the pages are being navigated. A typical convention that is so common for horror websites is the use of darks colours that we have tried to use on all of our pieces of work. The colour schemes are there to keep the feel of the film, the evil/danger involved and the terror that is so often in horror films. As a result this is another convention that has been followed for this website for Forest Of The Unknown. The colours used are there to represent the evil nature of the film and the danger that will be involved for the characters included.

However another convention typically seen is the use of multiple tabs/pages for the user to navigate through. But for our website there is one main “home” page that has been created but it has been separated into different sections which are linked in the fixed menu on the left side of the page. Furthermore this is something that we have challenged because we wanted the website to be different in its own way in order to stand out from normal websites and this makes it easier to navigate as well because there are no loading times to find and get the next page ready, instead it just moves up or down depending on the page selected.

Overall, as with the trailer, a large amount of the conventions have been followed to make sure that it works well for the targeted audience. Furthermore there are a number of conventions that have been subverted because it will make it stand out more in the eyes of the viewers. Not only this but having the website layed out in a way that is different than other common horror websites will give us a better advantage because it will stick in the minds of the viewers for longer because of what we did differently. It will also enhance the users experience when browsing on the internet because of the overall look and feel of it.

The Poster

For the poster we wanted to make sure that we followed the conventions that are associated with horror film posters such as Friday The 13th. Furthermore we tried to achieve this by having the location of the poster in an isolated location such as a forest. For most of the comparisons, I wanted to go with Friday the 13th because this poster was very effective for the type of the horror film that where going for. Not only this but the dark colour scheme has been used because this is very common with horror especially red because this is showing the danger, evil and even the use of blood is going to be apparent within the trailer.

Furthermore another convention that we have followed is the use of the credits at the bottom of the posters. What this does is that it shows the actors that are involved but also the production company and the filming company involved with the trailer. Now even though this isn’t a convention specifically for horror, it is for all posters as whole and so we included this because this would have made the poster as realistic as possible to entice the audience into watching the trailer and viewing the poster as well. Along with this we have made the masthead slightly larger than normal. This because we really wanted the title to stand out and be there in front of the audience for them to see clearly. Another convention that we have followed is the colour scheme for the title.

Friday The 13th also has the same colour as our poster but originally this wasn’t going to be the colour. This was because a colour that was supposed to resemble blood was originally intended but when printed off it was too dark and completely out of focused. And so as a result we went for the basic red and this was a risk because I thought that this was going to be childish and not serious enough but actually it turned out really well.

Overall we have tried to follow as many of the conventions as possible because the poster is going to the fundamental piece of ancillary work that is going to draw the attention of the audience into watching this trailer/film. Furthermore we were trying to make the poster as realistic as possible and so we were always looking at examples such as Friday The 13th and Drag Me To Hell to base out poster upon to make sure that we got the conventions correct or the audience to look at .

Real-life poster

Real-life poster

Final Poster

Final Poster

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