Objectives

Effective sound design.

Walter Murch mixing Apocalypse Now!

“Never before in history, before the invention of recorded sound, had people possessed the ability to manipulate sound the way they’d manipulated color or shapes. We were limited to manipulating sound in music, which is a highly abstract medium. But with recorded material you can manipulate sound effects—the sound of the world—to great effect. In the same way that painting, or looking at paintings, makes you see the world in a different way, listening to interestingly arranged sounds makes you hear differently.”

Walter Murch, interview transcribed at http://www2.yk.psu.edu/~jmj3/murchfq.htm (accessed 02/03/2014)

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My stated aim for The Fourth is to construct a near future science fiction dystopia that uses sound design and several cultural touchstones to create a recognisable but unique story world. The idea is that through the use of appropriate atmospheric audio and sound effects, I can create a film that rises above the production values of standard film student fare and evoke a believable sci-fi world within the limited time and budget afforded to me for this project.

Obviously the idea of producing a ‘believable’ film opens itself up to questions of subjectivity, and as such the only way to guage how effective my working methods are in achieving my aim is to guage empirical feedback from as many viewers as possible. To that end the completed film will be available online with a link to an audience survey, from which I will be able to ascertain a broad view of how succesful I have been from both a technical viewpoint (in terms of the clarity of the audio, the mixing and the general quality of production) and from a story perspective (how the sound served the story, how immersive the story was). These results will contribute greatly towards my own critical reflection of the project, from which I will hope to achieve a higher level of understanding of the processes involved in filmmaking.

From a personal point of view a further objective with the film, should it be good enough, is entry into the 2014 London Sci-Fi film festival.

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