During the week of the February Brief we have also been given a task concerning vintage film genres and given the aim to create either a short film or 3 photography stills inspired by one of the genres shown below. Firstly we have been split into groups and i have been placed with Annabel, Callum and Claire, we shall meet to discuss whether we plan to split the research and then explain genres to eachother or whether we shall create independent research on all genres. From there we will discuss ideas on what context our film or stills with entail and then get onto the practical planning like whether we need props or costumes,and which new location we will be exploring. I will document all of these meetings for reference for work based learning, below is the brief for this task. I am personally drawn to British comedy because i love the Carry On films such as Carry on Matron and Carry on Camping.
Task: film genres
Students will be in teams and should briefly research the stylistic essence of all of the following : Film noire, British comedy ( Ealing comedy or Carry on ), British Hammer horror movies of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s. , B’movies, German Expressionist film, La Nouvelle Vague or “New Wave”.
However as you are working as a team you may want to research one or 2 styles each and present to others.
Then selecting just one of your preferred themes, as a group you should take a minimum of 3 stills or a short film ( with props or makeup if needed ) on location, responding to a new location as part of the creative process, encouraging you the student to look at your environment with a greater level of observation.
The aim is to help the groups bond, while introducing you to of both high and low popular / visual culture of the 20th Century, thus broadening your cultural and media understanding and appreciation. They could also be good talking points in portfolios demonstrating effective research application, team work and a bravery in stepping outside of your comfort zone, it could be an evening activity.
The film themes can be recorded on your contextual blogs as can the finished output plus the documentation of how you managed the task. This is not a big project that should take long to complete or manage and research is easily accessible both on line and through the library.
Group1 : Graphics Year 1 ( not going to Barcelona )
Group 2 : Year 2 Graphics ( Barcelona )
Group 3 : Year 2 Graphics (Not going to Barcelona)
Group 4: Sue, Karen, Chelsea, Vicky and Francis.
Group 5 : Hayley, Sylvester, April and Lewis.
Group 6 : Year 2 Photography and year 1 and 2 Fashion not going to Barcelona.
Group 7 : Fine Art not going to Barcelona.
Unit Learning Outcomes and Assessment Criteria are under the Unit information section of breo. If you would like a hard copy please see staff.
Our group have had a meeting on Thursday 23rd of January to discuss ideas and plan this project:
23rd January- 13:15-13:45
In attendance: Megan, Callum, Claire & Annabel
Aims of meeting: discuss ideas, possible locations, possible themes, necessary props and costumes and dedication of jobs.
We have each chosen one of the types of films to research, and there were two left so Callum and myself each volunteered to take one so we research 2 each. Callum will research Film Noire and German Expressionist films, I will research British Comedy (Carry on) and New Wave Cinema. Claire will research B-Movies and Annabel will research Hammer Horror films. We will create a power point slide on each type of film and explain the different Genres to eachother.
We then went onto discuss which Genre of film we would like to focus on, i provided some background knowledge on each type because i have already looked them up briefly the night before. We decided to create a short film of 4 minutes based on Hammer Horror, admittedly it would have been nice to explore the other genres before deciding but this was not to be. Hammer horror films look like cheesy horror films with bad props and shot on quite a low budget, due to this we decided to create one in the same way, making it cheesy and with a somewhat 80’s hammer horror vibe about it.
When we each research our types of films we will think of a possible location that would work for each genre, for the hammer horror we have decided upon an abandoned ruined church in the village of Clophill, it is a famous church because it is supposedly haunted, it was built the wrong way round because all churches are meant to face north and as it faces south it was thought to be used for demonic purposes and satanic rituals.
it looks very eerie, and we plan to shoot at night to add a creepy atmosphere. As we all got brainstorming together i came up with the idea of a witch craft themed short film, because of their popularity in the Hammer Horror movies and because there are 3 girls and 1 boy in our group, which makes for an excellent stereotypical horror movie where a guy is attacked by 3 evil witches.
This is my idea:
1) Callum is spotted creeping around the woods by the witches assistant (played by claire in very gruesome make up)
2) Switch to scene of Callum in a cauldron being cooked by witches and assistant, very tacky style
3)Switch to last scene, witches and assistant sitting around eating chicken (referencing callum) with his clothes and a pile of bones for dogs from pets at home in front of them
4) credits and all characters perform “Hammer Time- Cant Touch This” as a spoofy tacky ending
Props will be collected and all costumes prepared by wednesday 29th January, ready for shooting, A media student will assist us in the filming of the piece, which will take place at night at the location mentioned above. The film will be shot in black and white, reminiscent of Hammer Horror’s early films. It will also be a silent film, this is an idea we are toying with and we shall try it both ways.
Megan: witches hat and plain black clothing
Annabel: witches hat and plain black clothing
Claire: dark coloured clothing, filo pastry and egg white will be used to create a loose disgusting skin effect
Callum: oldish looking clothes, perhaps inspired by an era from hammer horror
Set props: cauldron (big plastic plant pot?) tea lights to set the scene when the witches are cooking, chicken, bones for dogs, anything else we can think of
Date for creation : Wednesday 29th January
Date for editing: Monday 3rd February
Showing: 13th February at presentation
Below are my slides from the slide show 🙂 i have designed the background etc and created the introduction for our presentation so the others can just add on their slides:
Today we went to shoot our film, we originally decided on Clophill church because of its creepy history, but we were disappointed to arrive and find it all in scaffolding and unable to be used:
So we drove around and discovered a church in Ridgemont that suited much better, we were very lucky to find this and it was empty so perfect for filming in 🙂
this Church was called All Saints, ironically we have a church in Dunstable called that too!
here is some background information on the church, it is closed and just a public walking site now which meant we didnt need to seek permission from a vicar or anyone to film in it, we were still respectful of the church and didnt make any mess or make alot of noise.
Once we had discovered our location we needed to gather the props, we decided to keep it cheap and cheerful like conventional hammer horror films that normally had quite a low budget. We used bin bags for witches capes and went to KFC and ate chicken and kept the bones for human bones, we also bought some dog bones in pets at home to bulk it out a bit. For the witches costumes we had hats and plain black dresses, we also did over the top 80’s style make up like the woman in the hammer horror films, i did claires hair and makeup quite wild and messy to make her look like a crazy person, she actually plays just sort of the assistant to the witches. Callum was playing the victim so he could be dressed as a regular person, we decided on no logo’s clothing though and kept his costume just simple. below is a collage of our getting ready, getting ready in the car was quite challenging as it was too windy outside to do it!
We shot our film in a series of scenes, we wanted to keep our film under 3 minutes but make the maximum impact so we divided it into scenes, this was a really fun task to do and we all had a laugh whilst filming. We did make one mistake which is we shot it in a combination of portrait and landscape styles, this was down to the excitement of the scenes it didnt cross our mind til in the evening when i began editing the films. Unfortunately there is nothing i can do to change the shape of the scenes without losing material so it does look a little home made but for our first film i hope the entertaining context makes up for the mistake! When editing the film I turned it black and white for the old horror film effect and added a simple title and credit sequence. we decided upon a silent film because it draws more attention to the acting and the surroundings, rather than our constant laughter or the noise of the road outside.
our film is below 🙂 hope its enjoyable, i very much enjoyed this task and we created a power point presentation of research, my slides are above.
For this task for the Contextual week we were asked in small groups to create a short film or a series of film stills inspired by one of the following genres: Film noir, Hammer Horror, British Comedy, New Wave cinema, German Expressionist Cinema or “B” Movies. We as a group researched a category or 2 each for a presentation and then chose from what we learn there. In our group was myself, Callum, Claire and Annabel. I felt my creativity and that of Callum and Claire’s was stifled in this task because immediately as it was announced Annabel had decided that we were doing Hammer Horror, as she was quite insistent this is what we ended up doing. If I could choose again I would have liked to try British Comedy as it was not attempted by any of the groups and comedy is more of a challenge than horror, which is quite a simple genre with obvious plot lines. Although our decision was pre made, I came up with a plot line with the idea of witchcraft which is prominent in 1980’s hammer horror films and with cheesy horror films reminiscent of hammer horror. Hammer Horror films were also cheap budget with simple props and costumes, this made it easy for us to acquire props and costumes and we decided to run with this storyline: Callum is a passer by, walking near an abandoned church when he is followed by Claire, playing a minion of two cannibalistic witches. He is chased into the abandoned church and ambushed, and locked in a dungeon, which we conveniently sourced a church with what appears to be a rustic dungeon in it. The final scene shows bones and his clothes in a pile, inferring he has been eaten. It was a simple but effective plot line and we decided to shoot in black and white and in silent, because the surrounding area had traffic noises which would have made our film less authentic to the time. I was pleased with the planning of this task, we had a meeting once our genre had been decided and assigned tasks, I would like to say people pulled their weight evenly but Callum and I had to do most of the research ourselves. This task was though fun to shoot and we had a good day sourcing a church, because the original church we had envisioned was in scaffolding. It was a good laugh and we bonded well as a team, it took one day to gather all the footage for the film and then I spent the night editing it. It was disappointing to have to edit the entire thing myself, but I found it an interesting task nevertheless. If I were to do this task again we would ensure that we all shot the scenes with the camera in portrait mode not landscape but overall I think the practical elements of this task went very well and we produced a film that had the tacky cheap quality of hammer horror films and also some unintentional comedy that turned out very well.