Friday, 15 November 2013

Thriller synopses research

Thriller synopses research

The definition of a movie synopses is "Brief condensation, outline, or summary of the main points of an articles, book, or plan. Unlike an abstract, a synopsis maintains the point by point sequence of the salient ideas." 
Therefor thriller synopses are just brief summarisations of the movies main events and critical points/themes that help the reader to understand the overall direction and meaning of a film in terms of not only conventions and sub genre. There are many thriller synopses i have decided to analyse silence of the lambs as it's sub genre's include psychological, horror and mystery.

The Silence of the Lambs

  • A psychopath known as Buffalo Bill is kidnapping and murdering young women across the Midwest. Believing it takes one to know one, the F.B.I. sends Agent Clarice Starling to interview a demented prisoner who may provide psychological insight and clues to the killer's actions. The prisoner is psychiatrist, Dr. Hannibal Lector, a brilliant, murderous cannibal who will only help Starling if she feeds his morbid curiosity with details about her own complicated life. This twisted relationship forces Starling not only to confront her psychological demons, but leads her to face with a demented, heinous killer, an incarceration of evil so powerful, that she may not have the courage -- or strength -- to stop him!
    Written by Robert Lynch <>
Taken from the IMDB site-

From this synopsis we can see that there are many important thriller conventions used, for example plot lines about 'psychopath murder' and 'psychological demons' all demonstrate the mental aspect (suspense/ tension) of the film. We can clearly see the sub genre's highlighted are the ones I mentioned in the introduction. The audience for this kind of film is also not likely to be a very young audience younger than 15 possibly as it may scare them, the film is clearly intended for young adults as it is about one and furthermore the themes displayed would be interesting mostly to this age range.

Next i would like to analyse a movie called "The Sixth Sense" as it is a very popular and interesting thriller movie.

The Sixth Sense

Child psychologist Malcom Crowe is one night visited by an ex-patient named Vincent, angry, enraged. He wounds Crowe, then kills himself. A few months later, Crowe is visited by a 9-year old boy named Cole. He sees dead people who do not know they are dead. Because of this, he is called a freak in school. Crowe, at first thinks he is seeing things, but after spending a lot of time with Cole (much to his wife's dismay), he discovers Cole may be seeing dead people after all.
Used from IMBD also address:

The sixth sense is very psychological also as it possibly looks into a mental illness/ alternative reality that is scary and tense, the connotations of death and dead people are mainly scary, shocking and horrific. This kind of thriller is different from many others as it has no action, however the use of flashbacks is another convention, as it disorientates space and time confusing the audience furthermore there is a large use of obtrusive edits which add to the feeling of tension as they further unsettle peoples psychological understanding of movie events, thrilling them.
In terms of audiences the young boy would imply that young children can watch this movie, however they are likely to be very scared by this movie, so the appropriate classification of 15 is given to this movie, meaning mainly young adults would be the largest demographic for this movie of many sub genre's including mystery, psychological and weak horror mainly.

For my final analysis of film synopses i would like to research a different sub-genre of thriller, the disaster thriller, which has conventions of 'the end of the world plot lines' with survivalist concepts, furthermore they are likely to contain the first person view of someone who experiences and tackles the obstacle of the end of the world, either individually or with a group who often have to work together to survive. The movie that i have chosen which fits this sub-genre and contains all the conventions noted above is called 'The Day After Tomorrow' which i will analyse.

The Day After Tommorrow

  • As Paleoclimatologist named Jack Hall is in Antartica, he discovers that a huge ice sheet has sheared off. But what he does not know is that this event will trigger a massive climate shift that will affect the world population. Meanwhile, his son Sam is with friends in New York to attend an event. There they discover that it has been raining non-stop for the past 3 weeks, and after a series of weather-related disasters begin to occur over the world, everybody realizes the world is entering a new Ice Age and the world population begins trying to evacuate to the warmer climates of the south. Jack makes a daring attempt to rescue his son and his friends who are stuck in New York and who have managed to survive not only a massive wave but also freezing cold temperatures that could possibly kill them.
    Written by John Wiggins

IMBD address:

This movie is very different to the first two that i have discussed as the 'thrill' is in a different feeling category- this is more of an adrenaline building, instinctual, survival situation rather than psychological perplexion. In this thriller the conventions displayed are like i mentioned earlier of the survival plot lines and with individualistic point of view on life, with a positive message to help others. The sub-genre fits in very tightly to the disaster sub genre and audiences for this type vary greatly as well, but may be more appealing to a further audience of older and younger ages than the first two. It is more appropriate for a younger audience and is a PG, meaning all ages can see it, in my opinion children older than 8 would also enjoy this movie. On the other side of the spectrum this film might also be appealing to an older audience as disaster and survival is a universal topic interesting to older people as well whatever age.

-David Ziolkowski

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