Analysis of Genre
The introduction of the film starts with photographs, appearing on screen, that are black and white. The audience realises that this film will be set before colour photographs, so around the 1960’s.
The sound in the opening is quite eerie to the audience because of the piano used in the opening theme; this sort of music is used in the horror genre to make the audience feel tension for example, the theme tune of the “Halloween” movies. The pictures are mainly of children and houses and later on in the movie these pictures are owned by Michael Hanlon, one of the seven heroes (Propp). The pictures of children are shown because the whole movie is based around children and family. The photos are held together by red slots; red is an intimidating colour and is often used in horror movies. The final picture contains a theatre with the movie showing “I am a teenage werewolf” and there are old cars parked outside but the picture fades out, becomes animated and sets a modern day scene as the cars and the theatre become modernised. This tells the audience that the time is now after the photos.
“Stephen King’s IT” does not follow a classical narrative structure because it starts in the middle, then the beginning and finishes with the end. This is also a few seconds of equilibrium at the beginning of the movie.The camera pans upwards to show the weather and sky as a huge lightening bolt jolts across giving more tension to the audience causing some disequilibrium. One of the main questions of the film is “what are you afraid of?” Perhaps the bolt jolting across is a reflection upon the fact that some people are afraid of lightening. This weather also indicates something bad is going to happen. Wind is used for the same purpose and diagetic sounds of wind howls are used to make the audience feel alarmed.
The movie begins as a child sings a nursery rhyme, “insy winsy spider”, while riding a tricycle. The rhyme has some significance as the demon in the movie climbs up the pipes to get the children, the demon also lives in the drains. Later on in the movie the actual real demon happens to be a spider, this is sort of a secret message for the audience. Spiders are another fear that humans have. The use of a nursery rhyme scares the audience because it is quite spooky and an example of this used in another movie is “Nightmare on Elm Street” where the children sing “Freddie’s coming for you.
The child’s bike is creaky and picking up these tiny conventions the audience knows that something bad is going to happen to this sweet, little innocent girl. The girl picks up a spooky doll, another fear that some people have, and the doll gives a really creepy laugh.There is a close up of the toy which serves as an enigma code for the audience when Michael Hanlon finds the doll. For the first time now the audience hears the demon, a clown that kidnaps and eats children. The fact a clown is used is fairly ambiguous because people expect clowns to be friendly and entertain children. This makes the audience question if children are really safe around people they think are safe.
Non diagetic music of clown whistles, circus type of music is used to scare the audience. Within the first two minutes of the film the disequilibrium point occurs. The clown moves towards the child and the screen fades out into black a typical way of showing death without showing the killing. The mother of the child comes out but confusingly the wheel on the child’s tricycle is spinning by itself to make the scene more spooky and mysterious. There is a close up of the rusty wheel on the bike when the mother screams; the rust almost seems like dry blood.The next scene is a murder mystery set where forensic scientists and police officers are running around the set.
A man in a long brown coat and black hat appears and we obviously know he is a detective; a detective is a convention of the mystery genre. We also presume that this detective could be the hero of the story but in fact this is not true. The camera pans out and focuses on a black man, Michael Hanlon, who is also wearing the same sort of clothing to a detective. We know that he is a protagonist who has something major to do with the plot of the narrative. The weather again is significant in the scene because someone has died and it’s starting to rain.Water is used a lot through-out the movie because water is related to the demon.
The demon could be said to be the villain of the story. The clip continues and we find out there are six other mysterious numbers that the protagonists question but we know what has happened to these other children. Michael finds a picture of George who is the brother of another hero in the story, however George was killed by “It” in the past before the time the movie is in at the moment. We realise that this picture has a major significance to the story but for Michael it serves a different purpose. For him the picture makes him believe that “it” is back, the picture is a cause effect chain.
In the next scene we are introduced to Bill another protagonist who plays the role of one of the ensemble of heroes in the movie. Bill is typing away at his computer and his thoughts are heard to the audience to show what he is writing. This has been put in because what he is writing is significant “A shadowy figure lurches into frame dripping with foul water and dark oozing mood” we are led to think that something like this would happen later on in the movie. Also this is an opening, for us, to what sort of character Bill is and what his professions are.