Friday, 18 February 2011

CC- Plot

We have decided to do a blog about the plot of our film as people after seeing our rough cut seem to be confused about what is happening.
To start with this is done on purpose as the main character is supposed to be disorientated and in a dream world as he sees visions of what has happened to him or what he has done to someone else.

The plot is that the character has apparently killed someone or maybe more than one person and he doesn't know why, where, when etc he has killed this person and who this person is. This leads to the character going on a search for truth to find out what he has done or if he has even done it.

We wanted our film to be confusing to add mystery to the circumstances that has led to the character seeing these horrific images of what has happened.

People seemed most confused about the end of the opening when the character wakes up in bed, this is supposed to be confusing and for the audience to determine what reason it holds themselves but the reason he does wake up is to show that he was dreaming. This further shows whether or not what the character has seen is even real.

BH- Initial feedback on the 2nd roughcut

Torment: Dreamscape Roughcut 2 from Benji Hudson on Vimeo.

The first thing that was noted was the fact thhat we still need to add titles to the intital shots, we are currently lacking them in this version of the rough cut.
Another thing to note is the pacing of the intoduction, it has a varying pace with the introduction slowing down and speeding up, with very few establishing shots before we see the main character., also the initial long shot seems to be not far enough, we should fade gentley into a slightly closer shot of the house similar to the film Psycho by Alfred Hitchcock.

Another thing noted was the slight wobble when the character hammers down upon the keyboard- because the camera was resting upon the desk, and as such it caused the camera to wobble slightly.

The variation of the shots also was said to need some improvement, at the moment, we just have shots of him going downstairs with very few shots that interupt it, also we have some quite long shots, they are on screen for far too long and we could have used some additional shots to break it up.Also with the small flashbacks we need to show additional distress to the main character, he doesn't show enough emotional reaction to what is going on, he seems rather passive and calm throughout and the flashbacks appear with little audio cue, so we need the sound to be much stronger and with more distortion, to make the idea stand out as much as we can and scare the audience as much as we can.
Also small touches to the characters enviroment may be needed, maybe a photograph that indicates some form of past tragedy so we can give the sense that the character is a bit older than he appears to be.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

CC- Our films ratings BBFC

According to the BBFC we must follow these guidelines to create a 15 rated film

Suitable only for 15 years and over

No one younger than 15 may see a ‘15’ film in a cinema. No one younger than 15 may rent or buy a ‘15’ rated video work.


Drug taking may be shown but the film as a whole must not promote or encourage drug misuse.


Strong threat and menace are permitted unless sadistic or sexualised.

Imitable behaviour

Dangerous behaviour (for example suicide and self-harming) should not dwell on detail which could be copied. Easily accessible weapons should not be glamorised.


There may be frequent use of strong language.


Sexual activity may be portrayed without strong detail. There may be strong verbal references to sexual behaviour, but the strongest references are unlikely to be acceptable unless justified by context.


No theme is prohibited, provided the treatment is appropriate for 15 year olds.


Violence may be strong but should not dwell on the infliction of pain or injury. Strong sadistic or sexualised violence is also unlikely to be acceptable. There may be detailed verbal references to sexual violence but any portrayal of sexual violence must be discreet and have a strong contextual justification.

Our film follows the guidelines of the BBFC rating system for a 15. Use of blood in our film is strong but we never show any acts of violence as the film is more about the psychological health of our main character rather than showing violence. There is no imitable behaviour in our film due to its surreal nature and there is no language barriers as we don't ever swear in the film.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

BH - Intertextuality in re-shoot

Another aspect concerning intertextuality in our re-shoot is that of the incorporation of the books American Psycho by Brett Easton-Ellis and Fight Club by Chuck Palahnuik. We chose to subtly include these books in the background of typical teenager because they have both had a strong influence on how we chose to film and what we chose to film about. The books, and indeed the film variants of them both include strong psychological aspects, but they also include elements of violence that we have tried to capture in our film.

A screenshot from iMovie of American Psycho being present in the main character's room. 

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

CC - Updates to filming

We have decided to film some more shots for our opening so that we can hopefully give our film more content, add surrealism and to make some shots look cleaner. We are also filming any shots we see as unsteady. The reason for this reshooting is in our audience feedback of our rough cut we were told that the flashback/dream sequence didn't make sense so we are going to try to make sense of it to the  audience.

BH - Lost Highway Deconstruction

Dir: David Lynch
Budget: $15,000,000
Gross: $3,796,699
BBFC rating: 18
IMDB Rating: 7.6/10

Lost Highway by David Lynch is a strong influence upon our film, it features a wide range of talents and techniques to create a prolonged sense of dread, that lasts throughout the film. 

The introduction opens with some titles in yellow font, over a scrolling road which lasts for 2 mins 13 seconds, and then opens into the films first scene, which is a close up of Bill Pullmans character smoking a cigarette in the dark at 2 mins 17 seconds, with only the cigarette lighting up the scene and only Bill Pullmans mouth and hand smoking visible. The screen fades out and then a mid-range/close up of Bill Pullman is shown while he smokes again, the smoke clinging to the air. 

At 2 mins 40 seconds the screen lights up again to show Bill Pullman clearly. 

However at 3 mins 5 seconds the door buzzer goes to indicate someone is at the door, the character gets up to listen to the message. 

At 3 mins 21, a close up of the door buzzer and the characters finger pressing 'LISTEN' is shown. Then at 3 mins 37, we hear an ominous voice saying "Dick Laurent is dead."

At 3 mins 33 seconds the the camera pulls out to a mid-shot, with the character silhouetted against the light, he then walks closer towards the camera and as he does so the camera pans to follow him, as he goes to a window to investigate who has left the message, in the background we can hear police sirens.

At 3 mins 56 seconds, the camera shifts to a point of view shot, to show the character surveying the scene- checking if anyone is outside- however he can't see anyone so he goes to see if he can get a better view.

As the camera pans we have the character looking around, confused and unsure about what has happened, and finally we have a final exterior shot of the outside of the house.  

Lost Highway Intro from Benji Hudson on Vimeo.

This introduction links in strongly to the ending, which has several call backs to the intro as Bill Pullmans character is coming outside the front of the house and he comes to the door and says 'Dick Laurant is Dead" Giving a certain sense of ambiguity to the entire events of the plot, we don't know what has happened to the time frame of the plot for this to happen, and as the film draws to a close we have the final shots of Bill Pullmans character driving away along a dark highway.

Lost Highway Ending Scene from Benji Hudson on Vimeo.

This means that the entire plot is rather ambiguous in its nature, a rather traditional aspect of the psychological thriller. This is because often the endings of thrillers are left up to the audience to decide what happened.

Thursday, 3 February 2011

BH - Poster Design STAGE 1

Thinking ahead to target audience and marketing, I've spent afew hours desiging and creating posters of diffrent design, exploring the use of fonts to create a relevant poster, I wanted something simplistic that really gave a clear message to the audience, something that would attract viewers, so to start with I played around with some fonts in Microsoft Paint, downloading them from

So heres what I came up with at first:

  • However I thought that the 'Torment' font looked too horror esq and maybe too gothic for a psychological thriller. So I worked again on the fonts, searching and in the end I chose to use the font I used for the 'Dreamscape' for the 'Torment' aswell, a serif font gives the implication of horror quite strongly as a title font.
  • So with my fonts sorted and decided upon I scoured google with something I could use as a place-holder image, something I could use just to check how it looked in reality on diffrent backgrounds.
heres my first attempt:

  • It's simple and the knife gives a slight hint at the plot, the text is easy to read with a nice clear white background, however my initial thoughts where it seemed horror esq, however initial feedback given via Facebook seemed to be posative, aside from the fact it appears the knife is lodged in bread. Here is some initial feedback...from the poster the genre was correctly guessed.

  • So for my next attempt I decided to try something more complex and psychological in focus rather than physical.

So using some art from the band TOOL I  produced this:

  • However I was unhappy with the level of detail in this image so I got hold of a higher resolution version, once again to test how it might look, checking diffrent image types to see how we might compare and emulate them in the final finished poster.

My next attempt:

  • I did like the image, but I felt that it was too dark and it lacked the appear and 'look at me' nature of the initial blood splatter and knife poster so I managed to make one final attempt on the poster design.

 Here it is:

I personally liked this poster design however initial feedback from the target audience on it was slightly less warm:

CO - Vodcast Feedback

Our first vodcast was tried and tested on different people to gather a few different reactions. Here were some of them

  • The spot could have been better, as there isn't much space, influencing the shot. Also, we filmed it in a fairly public place, meaning a few people entered the vicinity during our shooting, causing a disruption

  • The audio could have been louder, because at some points, the speaker is too quiet as we were quite far away from the camera

  • We could have focussed more, and we get distracted a few times

  • However, there were some very interesting points made concerning our influences and inspirations

  • This informative dialogue was relevant to our production

ALL - Vodcast 1

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

CC - Idents are complete

The two idents for our group have now been completed, Experimental Studios and Weathered productions.

For the Weathered productions ident we chose to have a fog background and a serif font. For the audio we chose a heavy rain soundtrack and for the last second or so a loud thunder clap, we chose to do this because it related the name of the production company.

For Experimental studios we used a very metal audio like clanging and bashing, we chose this to simulate a frequent audio in psychological thrillers when the main character is descending into madness. In the background we also had sharp sci fi themed background.

CC - First vodcast shot

We have just finished shooting our first vodcast in which we discuss our influences in filming such as American Psycho, Donnie Darko and The Shining. We talked about the themes in the films and why we have taken influence from the films. We plan to upload the footage tomorrow.

CC, CO, BH - Music Additions

As a group we have decided that we want to add in music to our rough cut and our first vodcast.

For our vodcast we have added the song Djent Satisfaction by Monarchist, we used this music because there are no vocals so it provides some adequate background music while we talk about our influences.

For our roughcut we have been brainstorming the following songs as we think they are suitable for a psychological thriller

  • Ripe with Decay by Nine Inch Nails
  • Rammstein by Rammstein
  • Driver Down by Trent Reznor
  • Samsara by Parkway Drive
  • Djent Satisfaction by Monarchist
  • Jetpacks was Yes! by Periphery
  • Auto Rock by Mogwai