The opening sequence of the film Scream

The opening sequence of a film is important because it makes the audience interested and makes them want to keep watching but to do this the director needs to develop a good teen introduction to the film. In a teen horror film the audience would expect the first impressions of the characters to be formed, the typical teen horror movies plot to be introduced. Also the location, tone and the genre of a scary movie to be established.

The audience would usually expect a chase in some part of the opening to take place with a vulnerable victim and psychopathic killer in a tense atmosphere. There are two characters in the opening sequence: the typical teenage girl Kaci and the voice of a mystery man introduced over the phone. The first impression we get of Kaci is a typical teenage girl; we get this impression by the way she is portrayed. Kaci is shown in a cosy beige jumper and casual light blue jeans, this shows she’s having a relaxed day in.

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Kaci is also shown wearing red lipstick, this shows us that shes trying to look older, its as if she wants to impress someone. Kaci has short blonde hair, shows she’s a sweet and innocent girl but she also wears red lipstick, which tells us that she’s probably quite flirtatious, which we see later on in the opening and can get the audience tense. We can also get an impression of her by what she’s doing and her behaviour, at the start of the sequence we see her making popcorn as if she’s expecting someone over.

Her behaviour gradually changes as soon as the phone calls come in. Kaci gets too occupied and caught up by the phone calls and seems to forget about the popcorn, which at the same time the making of the popcorn in reflecting on her conversation witch the mystery man on the phone. Kaci’s behaviour of the phone call is quite casual, she gets into the conversation and seems to get quite flirtatious, but by something he says in the conversation she gets suspicious and quite panicky. The conversation gets tense and Kaci gets scared, frustrated and starts to panic a lot.

From her behaviour we can say the impression the audience will get is that Kaci is quite friendly and easily gets miss-lead in a conversation and needs to be more careful or she can give people the wrong impression by flirting. The voice of the man over the phone brings her a fake sense of security and she’s bit slow for not realising that. The mysterious man making a random phone call to her house phone introduces him. The impression we get of this mystery man at first is that his voice sounds a little mysterious yet relaxed, he starts off by starting a friendly and flirtatious conversation with Kaci.

Gradually his tone changes to be weird and making threatening comments, as if he wants to do something. This gives the audience the impression that he’s obsessive because he keeps phoning her, also that his a scary, threatening and creepy character as he demands her and starts to talk to her in a harsh, threatening tone. The characters in the opening sequence tell us it’s a typical teenage movie. The genre of this film is a horror film. The genre is introduced by first of all, the house being located in a suburb area, which is deserted.

The house is also shown as being big, with large windows and no curtains, which tells us that anyone can look into the isolated house, specially at night and that’s the time of day the film was introduced. The characters also play a big part in establishing the genre. This is shown when the man on the phone keeps calling back, which creates a mystery also by the costumes of the characters e. g. Kaci’s clothes are what a typical teenager from a scary movie would wear.

The music can help create by playing scary music, which changes its pace once tension is created, also to create tension and help establish the genre there’s a contrast between high and low notes. The events that take place also help build the genre e. g. the phone call from a mystery man, which later on occurs in the opening. So events, location, characters and music all help and create the genre of the film. Atmosphere makes the opening sequence of scream effective by creating a scary and tense atmosphere. This is done by the music e. g. when its slow and quite, this creates a fake sense of security and relaxes the audience.

Or when the music is fast and loud this makes the audience tense and creates a sense of action. Lighting creates atmosphere like when there’s a lot of light in the house this makes the audience feel safe and relaxed. Also when the lightings dim this creates a warm and cosy atmosphere and when there’s darkness, this frightens the audience and makes them feel as if something is going to happen to Kaci. The location helps create atmosphere because the house is isolated so there’s no escape, as if Kaci’s stuck in one place, also her house is big so it makes the audience feel scared because the mystery man can hide anywhere.

The atmosphere is developed to be effective. The pace of editing is made effective by how the shots are taken. At the beginning of the opening there are calmer shots so you don’t know what’s to come, also there are longer shots, which make the audience feel more relaxed. Gradually the shots get shorter, which breaks the tension and long tracking shots are used, which makes out she’s being watched captured by someone, it also helps create atmosphere as if someone’s moving but there not seen. The pace of the music through out the film reflects upon the conversation.

At the beginning of the scene the music is quite and slow, which makes us feel quite relaxed. Then gradually as he keeps phoning back the pace of the music gets louder. As Kaci gets more engaged in the conversation the music stays at a steady pace. As soon as the mystery man says something to make Kaci suspicious and panicky the music builds up and gets faster and louder to get the audience tense. After Kaci had locked everything and is hiding in one spot the music comes to a halt, which makes us think something is going to happen, which makes the audience more tense and frightened.

The music in the opening sequence makes it effective by creating atmosphere and tension. Enigmas in the opening sequence keeps the audience watching and help create tension; they want to know what’s going to happen next? The enigmas, which are raised in the opening sequence, are who is the man on the phone? Who’s looking at her? This affects the audience by making them suspicious also making them tense. The audience is curious to know and makes them look out for clues, which encourages them more to keep on watching the film.

The director of this film had made the opening sequence effective by using a range of techniques such as enigmas. This makes an impact by keeping the audience tense, which makes them carrying on watching. Furthermore the amount of camera angles used makes the film effective e. g. the tracking shot while she’s running. This makes the audience feel involved in the scene, as if someone’s watching her, which makes us feel scared and frightened for her. I think all the techniques he has used are successful and the scene was developed well with all the different techniques used.