Analysis of Opening Title Sequences The Ring Titles used Gore Verbinski 2002 How are the titles presented? There aren’t any titles in the opening scene. How are they supported by the soundtrack?
Mise en scene What is the first shot? How is the narrative introduced? During the company logos, instead of the usual animation, something from the film is worked into it and the ‘D’ from ‘Dreamworks’ flashes into a ring for a moment, in the style of the ring on the front cover. Apart from the logos of the companies that made the movie, the first shot is of the outside of a house, as the camera slowly zooms in. There is a tree in the left hand side of the shot, which is bare, implying the thriller aspect already. The narrative is introduced through the outside of the window. The girl starts by telling us “I hate television. It gives me headaches.” Then the shot is brought inside the house. She then continues to speak about the conspiracies of the television, before the other character is introduced and says “Here, you pick something, I don’t care.” What elements of the location/setting in the first scene indicate the genre? How is the atmosphere created? How is this a typical thriller film? The first shot appears outside at night. In the shot there is a bare tree, which is often used in thriller movies to highlight that the tree is not alive, and is a symbol for others around it. It is also raining, and the pathetic fallacy of this tells us that things are about to go wrong. We then go to a shot inside someone's bedroom, where two young, teenage girls are watching TV. The lighting is very dull and does not connote the stereotypes of what teenage girls usually do, which tells us something is wrong. The atmosphere is created through the rain in the background. There is absolutely no sound apart from the rain. It is also generated through the hushed tones they speak in, its not the normal volume that you’d speak to your friends. What does the first scene tell us about the character(s)? The first scene is clearly meant to show these two girls are both best friends. The one on the left of the screen starts by telling us all this scientific information about waves travelling when watching TV; we can tell she's intelligent. The other one doesn’t seem to care, and is more interested in hearing what the girl did with her boyfriend over the weekend. This not only shows us that they are close friends, but it shows us that they have opposite personalities. The girl on the left then tries to trick her friend by telling her that she watched the tape, then pretends to die. This shows us that she’s not afraid to have a laugh.
Camera shots, angles and movement Incorporating the theme into the company logo Low shot of the house from outside Middle shot of the two girls Close up of girls face Slow zoom from middle shot Shot-reverse-shot Slow zoom from shot-reverse-shot – illustrates audience is intrigued Close up of phone, long shot down hallway blurred while phone in focus Long shot of hallway as phone blurs and hallway becomes in focus
Sound Track Music Dialogue Sound Effects There is an on-going sound effect coming from the rain outside. This creates the illusion that it is raining, if you hadn’t already guessed! This is a common aspect in Thriller films because it is seen as bad weather. As the camera transition from outdoors to indoors, there is a high pitched almost whispering sound which makes it seem very eerie. There are a lot of sound effects in the opening sequence, a lot of little ones, including the sound of the television switching on and off, the sound of things hitting the floor and the sound of water dripping. They all play a part in making the film have a weird and eerie sense. There is a continuing dialogue throughout the scene, apart from some brief moments where the scene becomes all tense. It is used mostly with turn-taking to make the scene look as natural as they could make it, because they are trying to portray the friendship between the two girls. There is no music.