Saturday, 14 November 2009

Synoptic treatment for Judgement

Horror has dramatically changed over the years, going from classic films that have deep meanings that the audience can connect with, to gruesome ‘slasher’ films that now dominate the market. One of the things our movie will aim to do is bridge the gap between the old and new style, creating a gruesomely violent movie with a meaningful storyline which will inspire the audience and stay with them for long after they have watched it, making them want to watch it again.

Alex Winchester was a normal teen age girl with good friends and a great life, until the sudden and mysterious death of her best friend changed everything. Following Barthes' enigma code theory we will see Alex desperately try to find answers for her friend’s death but it becomes obvious that no-one will talk to her about it; in fact to her it appears that they are too caught up in their grief to even acknowledge her existence, but she refuses to give up. In the night time Alex will be plagued with terrible dreams of a car crash which she can’t ever remember happening and at the very end she will see the face of an old woman. More and more of her friends will start dying around her and she will be witness to one of these deaths where she will see a mysterious evil figure that she cannot make out completely. She then will realise that the car crash from her dream is real and everyone who was in the car is being killed off. She starts to believe it is the ghost of the old woman, who we find out died, and realises she’s next. She will get chased into a grave yard by the evil creature and trip over a grave but when she turns round to look at the tomb stone she will see that it is her own. She realises that she also died in the car crash and is killing off her friends because she blames them for her death. She will turn round and see herself and they will get into a conversation before she finally accepts that she can’t change what she’s done and, following Todorov's theory of equlibrium being restored after a moment of harmony, both versions of her find peace.

This movie will be a horror/ psychological thriller taking inspiration from two different styles of film. The idea that the main character is dead but does not realise it will be taken from classic movies like The Sixth Sense (1999) and The Others (2001) where both the main characters have dealings with the supernatural but do not realise that they are dead themselves. The idea that the main character will have multiple personalities and not realise it is actually them committing the crimes is like that of Fight Club (1999), an old movie, and The Uninvited (2009), a reasonably new movie based on an older Japanese film. In these movies both characters have split personalities, however what will be different in this movie is that the main character never interacts with their split personality as a friend, they will only have one encounter and that will be at the very end of the movie. The movie will take a few different aspects from a few well loved films but it will put its own unique spin on things so that it will remembered in its own right as movie unlike others out there.

Two directors that could be used are Charles and Thomas Guard. They are brothers who direct movies together and all though they are fairly new to the movie business they have directed some good movies. They actually directed The uninvited so they would not be strangers to this type of movie genre/ style. Another good director would be M. Night Shyamalan as he is good at creating a sense of tension and terror in all his horror movies; he has directed movies like The Village (2004), The Happening (2008) and The Sixth Sense. Both these directors would be good for creating the type of dark, depressing and creepy undertone appropriate for this movie.

There will be a few underlying themes in this movie. One will be social alienation, trying to find out if humans need friends and physical contact, after all the main character will feel alienated from her friends and need them in her time of grief, or are human beings better off alone; are we smarter, stronger and better at surviving without attachments and things to drag us down. Another theme will be is there life after death? This theme will be explored by Alex before she finds out about her own death, whether or not it is a ghost killing her friends or if it is just some deranged killer, and if things that are dead are defiantly evil or just misunderstood.

The title Judgement is a working title however it fits the movie well, Alex will be effectively be the judge, juror and executioner to all the people she believes killed her. It could also apply to her misjudgement of whom/ what is killing her friends and the reason behind it, or even the misjudgement of herself and what she is truly capable of.

This movie will be released on October 13th 2011 as it gives plenty of time to shoot and edit but. The time of its release is close to Halloween but far enough away from the day so that it will not be a typical Halloween style movie that is only good for cheap thrills one night a year. Because this movie does not centre around Halloween it should be watchable all year round but Halloween is a good time to release it as it is peak time for horror movies. The movie will have a certificate of eighteen to account for the gore, violence and terrifying psychological elements in the film.

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