Monday, 26 September 2011

Myth and The Movies...

I know I've already posted this on my blog but it's really relevant to this project too. This was one of the books recommended by Alan in our brief and it's been a really great source for narratives in particular genres.

Here are the notes I've made from it:

There are 3 types of story to the horror and science fiction/fantasy genres. In horror these are:

  1. "Man battles an outside monster that has come to pay a visit."
    1. These include demons, vampires, diseases, aliens, monster sharks e.g. Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Jaws.
  2. "Man creates the monster, seemingly with good intentions, that gets out of hand and must be destroyed."
    1. These include genetic experimentation and inventions that turn disastrous e.g. The Fly.
  3. "Man is monster."
    1. These address the wickedness of man.
    2. Man confronts the dark side of his nature.
    3. Hero faces the shadow within himself or the evil may be personified or externalised e.g. Halloween, Silence of the Lambs.
"Each of these stories provides a central thrust of action that propels us to the end of the film.  Horror thrills aren't enough to make a successful film, those terrifying sequences need to be structured around the central action."

The stories in Science Fiction and Fantasy genre are:
  1. "An Ordinary Hero enters a fantastic world." 
    1. An imaginary/fabled world e.g. Alice in Wonderland, Wizard of Oz
    2. Lost civilisation based on earthly reality is found e.g. Journey to the Centre of the Earth, the Lost World.
    3. The Hero finds a portal/makes a time machine e.g. Back to the Future, Time Bandits.
  2. "A fantastic being enters the Hero's Ordinary World."
    1. The creature is stuck, the films journey is its safe return e.g. E.T
    2. The creature arrives with a quest e.g. Terminator 2, War of the Worlds
    3. It arrives to pull the hero into its world e.g. Close Encounter of the Third Kind, Invasion of the Body Snatchers.
  3. "The Hero exists within a fantastic Ordinary World armed with awareness of its Science and mythology."
    1. The hero needs to solve a problem and great adventures follow e.g. Star Wars films
    2. Quest Journey shows the hero being manipulated by a greater power, such as gods/fate/magic e.g. Jason and the Argonauts, the Sinbad films.
    3. These can involve space travel adventures e.g. 2001: A Space Odyssey.
Voytilla, Stuart (1999) Myth and the Movies: Discovering the Mythic Structure of 50 Unforgettable Films. Canada: Michael Wiese Productions. Pages 75 and 261.

I thought that having these as a guide on this blog would be useful as we can all access it quickly with no fuss! :)

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