The Beast

Overview

My video trailer recut project involved turning the popular children’s movie The Sandlot from a comedy into a horror film. All the aspects of a horror film were in the movie, but the director and editors decided to give it more of a comedy plot. This made the transition from a comedy to a horror film an easier task and also made the trailer more believable. Instead of using The Sandlot in my title, I decided to make the title of the recut trailer The Beast because in the original movie, the dog is called the Beast by all the kids. This makes the connection between the original and the recut stronger and more realistic.

Specific Links to Course Readings

I intended to offer up much of the plot of the movie to the audience unlike Ryan Gilbey’s take on how movie trailers should be formatted. He gives an example of when he saw the trailer for Spike Lee’s Inside Manfor the first time he said, “I screwed my eyes shut and clamped my hands over my ears… For me it was insurance to protect the day when I see

The real nature of “The Beast” in The Sandlot.

Inside Man. It may turn out that the film is dreadful, but at least my viewing experience will be unpolluted by knowing who did what to whom and why before I even bought my ticket” (Gilbey, 42). A problem that may occur with my trailer is that we see the beast and know what he looks like. I purposely did this, and leave the audience wondering what they are after, and how the chase between the Beast and Benny begins. The rest of the chase is still a mystery.

Bernard Dick talks about many, and possibly all, the cuts and styles of making a movie. We can easily translate these purposes into movie trailers as well. Two of the most common transitions I saw in other trailers, and also used in my recut, were fade-in and fade-out. I won’t go into much detail as they are very popular, however they were very useful in making the separate clips flow together. One of the more specific examples I used, and Dick mentions it, is the match cut. I tried to input multiple clips in succession so there “seems to be no break in continuity as far as time and space are concerned” (Dick, 15). The shots of the Beast and the dog house together are all separately placed in the movie. I cut them and put them together to have them seem like they are just different angles of the same shot. It gives the trailer a little more suspense leaving the audience wondering what is inside.

Frederick Kaufman compares and analyzes the common ground shared between pornography and the Food Network. His detailed analysis shows that they are a lot alike by concentrating on the same themes and move along similar storyboards. Even though The Sandlot is a comedy, the big scary dog next door is a horror that lived in many of us as kids. That’s where I saw the parallel between a horror movie and this children’s comedy. They do not seem to go together, but when analyzed more (like food vs. porn) they have many similarities. It was easy to manipulate the clips in the film to make a horror trailer because with just a few alterations it fits into the horror category perfectly.

Rationale for Creative Choices

I enjoyed this project because it really allowed me to do what I wanted with the film and create the movie trailer I thought would be best. My ultimately favorite part is the music I inserted along with the clips. I used the song, “Bad Moon Rising” by Creedence Clearwater Revival as it is relevant enough today to be known by the audience, but also sounding old enough to be places in the time of The Sandlot. Another favorite aspect of the trailer is when Smalls says he is going to go get the ball back. I added him hitting the home run, then going to get it with the other boys screaming and pulling him off the fence. I made the scenes black in and out while the audio keeps playing the boys screaming to begin the horror portion of the trailer. If I were to do things differently, I would try to make the transitions between scenes flow a little better. I had a lot of trouble with the transitions and getting them to work properly but I still think I did a good job for my first video trailer project and using Adobe Premier for the first time.

Frustrations, Difficulties, and Solutions

I had trouble making the audio and video smoothly transition into each other. I think this was due to the fact that I made a horror trailer and from my research horror trailers tend to have quick transitions in their trailers. Samples of scenes are played for one second at most and then it moves to the next one. I believe I did a good job attempting to do this but to do it professionally takes a lot of practice and work. Also working with the different audio from clip to clip was difficult to work with depending on if there was music in the background or not. I took this problem away by making the clips with music in it already have no sound and used my own cover music for the entire trailer. I began this project a while in advance and it ended up not being too problematic for me and was actually very enjoyable. I would highly suggest starting the project early like professor Delwiche says because it gives you time to mess around with the video and really make a good project.

References

Bernard Dick (2002). “Film, space, and image,” excerpt from Anatomy of Film. Boston: Bedford / St. Martin’s.

Frederick Kaufman (2005). “Debbie does salad: The Food Network at the frontiers of pornography,” Harper’s Magazine, October.

Ryan Gilbey (2006). “Trailer Trash,” Newstatesman, March.

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