Monday, 20 February 2012

House Location

We researched the locations of films in terms of the homes of the protagonists. As a number of successful horror films are American, the scale of the houses is much larger than achievable in England, but the same theory applies.

In 'The Exorcism of Emily Rose', the house is large with large grounds. The house is colourful with pale walls and a red roof, creating a sense of normality and welcome about the house which will be subverted during the events of the film. The house does not appear threatening in any way, which will again be contrasted later on during the events of the film in order to better shock the audience.

The house in 'The Haunting in Connecticut' is similar in that it is also of a large scale. It also appears very normal with pale yellow/cream walls that make it appear welcoming. The trees surrounding the house appear natural and welcoming at the beginning of the film, although during the events of the film they could be considered to lend to the feelings of imprisonment and helplessness as the house seems to turn against them. The house appears wide and open with the large windows, which will again be subverted later when it turns into a negative place.

The inside of a girl's room in 'Sorority Row' shows it to be large, with pale colours making it appear more open and neutral. It contains personal items such as images on the walls and mirrors, showing it to be a comfortable place for the girls to be. It is tidy and appears organised, suggesting a level of normality to their lives. The features are well kept and detailed, suggesting a wealthy character that can afford a nice room and furniture.

Through researching the home locations of the protagonists it is clear that they need to have large spacious houses in order to appear aspirational in their wealth and success so that audiences are more drawn into the narrative. Using a large house would also support the characters being wealthy and able to attend a boarding or private school. It is also clearly important that the house suggests a level of normality at the beginning of the film, which will then be subverted when events occur and the house becomes a threatening prison. This will make it appear more shocking and also make the audience feel more intense feelings of fear as it is suggested that even comfortable and secure places can become sources of concern. The normality can be created by the use of neutral colours inside, and personal touches that reflect its supposed security. If the house is tidy and has nice features and furniture, it also suggests that the family is normal while suggesting wealth. As well as suggesting that the family is normal, the stylish interiors can also support their wealth.

 This is the interior of the room that will be shown during the party and seance scene, and it is the room of which most of the furnishings are seen, as in later shots there is low lighting and they are mid shot or close up. These rooms are suitable for the girls as they are large and open with pale walls and large windows that make it appear welcoming and normal. There are a number of personal items and decorations around the room, which is also very tidy and organised. It presents a perfect representation of the girl who lives there as wealthy and normal, and makes the house appear a nice and comfortable place to live. This will be subverted in later shots as they
become darker and less of the rooms can be seen, making the house feel smaller and present the idea of imprisonment and confinement within the walls. The lighting will also act to make it appear threatening through the use of shadows, making the walls appear dark as opposed to light and open.


Also see... House Mise En Scene and Boarding School Location

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