My film assigned to me specifically for sound purposes was spy game. After I do a breakdown of the formal elements involved with sound, I have to compare the sound design the High Noon and to Star Wars IV
These are my notes for the first 27 minutes ====
Shrill violin, sounds asian. This accompanies the su chou prison. Once we see those words that it is a prison, there are heavy drums underneath the digestic sounds. The violin wailing comes back over top of the drums. It has a fast tempo, though it is quite soft. Once we enter into the room for imjections the music goes away. However once there is a close up of Tom Bishop face a softer. Eerier music comes in. It underlines the scene in which the proisoners are asking for injections. This music builds once Bishop electrocutes himself. It cieses once his co workers try to revive him. But it amps back up before the guards of the prison gets there. Then a heavinly creepy sound comes as he is pronounced dead and we see that he is very much alive. The music gets very low and direct as Muir begins to move about the room. There is random bursts of frumming that build as Bishop goes into the depths of the prison searching for something. Another element gets added, an asian sounding instrument. The music calms once he makes a connection with a girl- and a base line comes in, almost americanizing the score. The drums and heaviness reappear when we go back to the workers trying to fix the electrical unit. Once he says “Get Out Now” the music matche sthe chaos in the prison, because the electricity is back. There is heavy drumming, and jarring low noted instuments in the score. There are also some high shrills. But then we are moved to the ambulance where Bishop is in the back seat. The music is calm, slow, but something is off. Music builds majorly as Bishop thinks he’s safe. But a crescendo of music allows the audience to realize that something bad is about to happen. The drumming is back as guns get pointed everywhere and men are dragged across floors. All of this music stops once we whirl through Asia and reach hongkong and the title card is finally introduced.
Music is bassy and has electric guitars as we are transported to langley virginia. There is still drumming but the Asia style has ceased. The music mellows out as we are inside of the C.I.A. Building and we meet the other main character. Mr. Muir There are stringed chords that go underneath this scene but once we enter the cubicle area there are these triumphant chords, maybe showing us that we can trust this guy. The bassy and drum filled sound once we see that the problem is in Hong Kong.
No music underscoring Mure and theother guys scene until he says “Good Luck with Your retirement.” Maybe it’s awakward because it’s obvious that these two don’t like eachother. Muirgets out some papers from a secret file on bishop and the music comes back. The drums and the triumphant but eerie schore. Bada-cha-chaaaa. Crsecendos as he enters back into the cubicle area but stops once he is inside of it.
Then we go back into the conference room. Muir seems to try to reconnect to some of the old members of the task force. However no one is speaking to him at all. There is no score in the beginning. When the man says that tom bishop has been arrested for espianage, the eerie violin sound comes back into the scene. Everytime there is a time scene shown- this being 8:02 am- a loud whooshing bam comes in and startles the feeling. The violin is joined by some other instruments, and is almost soothing. Once he accuses the team of being afraid of something, the music turns and gets dark. It’s soft, but dark.
He describes who bishop was. Says “Spring of 75”- electric guitar chords come in. Sounds like a rock ballad of in fact 75. There are lyrics ac/dc ish that accompany it as well as helicopter noises, diegetic with in the scent. The americanized music because this was an American War stops once Muir and another army member engage in conversation. Bishop meets Muir. Once Muir describes what Bishops mission is, the asian styled music and drumming reenters. There are wooshes that match the shats. A woosh for a close up. Once the gun men have the targets in range, sounds of joy come back. Then a hellicopter comes over head drums, and a wammy guitar come back in. It is fast and uncomfortable. Very modern, and less asian stlyed- perhaps because an american is about to shoot a vietnamese general.
The guitars drop out as we get down to a raw and strangely timed drum song. It’s like the drums are battling, which matches what is going on in the film. The strings come back in as the two characters are trying to run away safely from the helicopter. Once the helicopter goes down, there is a huge explosion, but the amricans are ok.
The music is sad and full of strings, which follows the Americans search for the lost members. Muir apologizes to the other man, about the deceased, and the music gets heavy with a constant beat, which has the sad but sweet strings over top of it. They found their men, and it is very happy. I believe a harp was weaved in the score somewhere.
He ended it. yes, this is the second time he has ended it.
I feel like absolute shit. I never seem to be a serious prospect for anyone and I feel as though I never will be. I told him that and he told me that that wasn’t true, and I shouldn’t think that… but how can I not think that when it’s always proven this way?
We are still going to be friends…I enjoy him other than just the physical stuff, but I feel so empty and so lonely right now. It makes sense why he wanted to end it…but I wish he didn’t have conscious in this case… because now that I’ve had something consistently that I wanted I feel deprived with out it. I keep asking myself what am I going to do…
I don’t know. I don’t know if I can look him in the eye right now without wanting to run the other direction. I don’t know why… because I’m not angry… I’m just sad. I’m alone. I’ve successfully ruined other chances of mine and there is nothing I can do to make up for that.
My show is over. I have nothing to look foward to. Soon I’m going to have to bust my ass at a gym in order to get into shape for next semester’s project and I can’t think about that right now. Who will I be working my ass off for then? Certainly not me. However, maybe if I was hot, maybe then I’d be serious enough to be considered for a real relationship.
I want to go home. I want to curl up in my bed with my dog and never get up.
I can’t keep thinking this way. I asked him if it was me. He said not at all. But it is. I’ve had to have done something. I could keep typing away at my pathetic thoughts on here or I could take a nap on this couch that I’m sitting on.
I guess I’m going to do that. Since I could say things that could get me in trouble on here. I just need to express my thoughts… and no one reads this- hopefully. soooo it’s safe.
I don’t want to tell anyone about it, because it’s insane for me to be going through such strong emotions about this anyway. I’m going to miss what was—-even if it never meant anything in the whole scheme of things… it will always mean something to me.
I feel as though my body is going to explode. I know that I’ve talked about this before but I need to say it again. I am at school more than I am at my actual home. Today I have a theater history midterm, and they are supposed to be ridiculously hard. I have never failed anything, but today might be a different story. I should probably be studying but I am so stressed out. I feel the need to strangle someone. Last night I got some major stress out of the way, so that was a good break from everything for a night. I definitely need more of that. Ugh, back to studying I guess.
and honestly if THEATER DURING THE WARS was going to be a huge topic, than we should have went over it in the class more.
WHEN YOU READ THIS DON’T FOCUS ON THE VOLCANO’S DIALOGUE UNTIL THE LAST LINE. IN PRODUCTION THE VOLCANO WILL NOT SPEAK AT ALL UNTIL THE LAST LINE. I USED THIS AS A WRITING TOOL AND BECAUSE THIS IS A ROUGH DRAFT I HAVE DECIDED TO LEAVE IT IN.
LUCKY (runs on stage crying.)
Oh my god. Oh my god. Oh my- Do you see this? Volcano are you looking at me? Look at my tail.
VOLCANO What are you talking about What’s wrong with it?
LUCKY (still crying)
It came off!
VOLCANO Where is it?
LUCKY (points off stage)
On the couch! That’s where my tail is. God damned defense mechanism. Of course, I just had to be born a gecko didn’t I? I wish I could have been like you volcano. At least you aren’t alive. You just sit there all day and night. I have to live trapped literally in a cage. I have no friends, well there is you, volcano. But why do I keep kidding myself? You aren’t real. You’re made out of plastic just like the top of this god awful cage. And yet, you seem to be all that I will ever have.(beat.) You know that once a gecko drops their tale they die.
VOLCANO That’s not true, Lucky. You can regrow it. That’s why it’s called a defense mechanism.
LUCKY (the sadness is turning to anger.)
I know that’s why it’s called a defense mechanism. Who’s the gecko here? Yeah, it could grow back, but that doesn’t mean that it’s going to. (beat) I am sick all the time as it is. I can’t go out of the cage and leave the heating lamp for more than one minute with out shaking and twitching and- I know this is it. That’s all that I’m saying. So say goodbye now. I guess that would make more sense if you could actually talk.
VOLCANO stop it. This isn’t it. You have so much to do. Remember when you wanted to be an actor?
LUCKY Shut up! I STILL want to be an actor. I will always want to be an actor. I mean, it’s not like I’ve ever seen any other options. From the time I was born I was kept in a cage. How humane is that? Of course I know that I’m a lizard. These glass show me my reflection every single day. But I’ll never be able to break free from here. And now my tail is useless, it’s gone. It’s not like Austin could stitch it back on to me. Ha, that would be a lovely scene. Let’s say he attached it back to me somehow, and I managed to stay alive for another year. Well eventually my tail would begin to grow back. So by the time that’s finished I will be that gecko with two tails…more of a freak than I was to begin with.
(sits down turned away from VOLCANO)
So how could I ever be an actor? I’m not even a gecko anymore. I’m a halfassed lizard… literally. Don’t laugh There is no part of this that is even remotely funny. Even if I wanted to be an actor there aren’t any positions. I don’t live in the wild where there are those gecko artists colonies. I don’t even know if they exist. I mean, I heard them talking about it once before Austin took me in, but those geckos were all captive fucks anyways.
(Goes to the edge of the cage to look out)
Oh my god. The tail is still there. It’s still on the god damned couch.Oh the brat is coming to get it now What is he going to do with it? Throw it away? That’s my body. Fuck. Well it’s gone now, Bye tail.(pause)
(Sits back down facing away from the volcano)
I wonder if he’ll do the same to me when I die?
VOLCANO Stop it Lucky, you are depressing me.
LUCKY oh I’m sorry volcano. I’m depressing you? Well, isn’t that sad. I mean I’m the one who’s about to die but I should stop complaining about my tailless and meaningless existence because you are getting sad. I sincerely apologize. I really do. (pause.) You know, I’ve never seen my tail not on me? I’ve seen it in the reflection of the glass but that image doesn’t do it justice. It was really beautiful wasn’t it? Specks of purple and black dotted all over it-it was so long and elegant- slender. It really was beautiful wasn’t it? I am not an attractive gecko by any means, but that tail redeemed my appearance somewhat. Now I’m a deformed freak. My head is too big. My mouth-it stretches all the way around my face. I”m way , way too thin. Jesus, my scales stick out a lot more than they should… And now I’m physically deformed. I am actually deformed. I look like I have always felt on the inside. A freak.
VOLCANO oh be quiet. Your just not going to die. And you don’t have that bad of a life.
LUCKY Not that bad of a life? Is that what you jut said? I must have a fantastic life, I mean I’m sharing my last problems with a toy VOLCANO that is made out of plastic. These conversations that we have- they mean nothing. You don’t even listen. You are my only friend and you can’t process anything that I’ve ever said.
VOLCANO I understand you.
LUCKY There is no way in hell you understand me volcano. The only things that understand me are those god awful crickets. They come in here once a week and I try and talk to them, because they can actually talk back. I can communicate honestly for once to someone, to anyone. But then I get hungry… If I could eat my own shit instead of them I would, but I can’t. So I end up eating the only creatures that I can share anything with. I eat my only friends. ,
(LUCKY starts to cry again)
LUCKY (CONT’D) Austin doesn’t understand me. He tells me he loves me, but that boy doesn’t know what love is… he is eight years old. He thinks love is stroking my spine. That’s not love. (pause) It usually hurts anyways.
(LUCKY feels his behind where the tail would have been. He looks at his hand and sighs. He craws over to the other side of the volcano and leans on it. He looks out of the cage for a while following the actions of the people on the outside of the cage.)
VOLCANO So are you done? Are you going to continue prophesiing about your life.
LUCKY I wasn’t going to continue prophesizing. I’m just going to lay here and wait .
VOLCANO Does it even hurt?
LUCKY NO, It doesn’t hurt. Your not getting this at all are you? I lost my tail. MY TAIL! That tail is what defines me. Tails and lizards… they go hand in hand. Without it what am I? You can’t even classify me as an animal. There isn’t a name for the species that I have become. Ok let me give you a visual here. You know that commercial that always comes on. The one that I freak out about- yeah, the one for GEICO. Well you saw that gecko. Yes I know he’s australian. But the point is he has a tail.-Yes, and he’s an actor too. He’s the only one. He is the guy next door gecko who wants to save you money. Who care’s though? Well besides me. It’s not like there is any way that I could ever make it like he has. God, who am I kidding? I can’t even speak englsih! If I could than I wouldn’t have lost my tail in the first place. I would have said, “Austin, I’m cold. Can you put me back?” and he would have and my tail would still be my tail. As a matter of fact if I could speak Austin could have brought me to the beach with him and I could have gotten out of this cage for once. But… what …. what do I do now?
VOLCANO You could be happy and just go on with your day.
LUCKY How do you expect me to just go on with my day? My day is over. All of my days are over. Even if I wasn’t going to die in a few hours, which I am undoubtably going to, why would I want to continue this? I feel like I am trapped in a sick twisted version of hell. It’s like I’m in one of those cages at the zoo, but there is no on to talk to. I’ve never thought about what I do in this cage all day until right now. I don’t do anything. I lay here, I talk to you, I pray that Austin isn’t going to talk to me, and when he does I spend a portion of my day recovering from my outing.
VOLCANO Don’t you feel any connection-an appreciation for austin?
LUCKY Don’t get me wrong I like Austin. I know that his actions towards me aren’t done to annoy or bother me. But they do. And even when I think back to the days at the Petco- What would have happened to me if I just stayed there? What would have happened if no one ever bought me? Would they have just put me out of my misery if all of the kids thought I was ugly or something ? I should have just stayed still, played dead, no one would have bought me. And I don’t know that they would have killed me. I could have stayed there bonding with the other geckos.
VOLCANO Do you honestly think that that life would have been better?
LUCKY I don’t know if it would have been better that way. It certainly would have been different. I mean, I only know this. I do the same thing every god damned day. Maybe it’s about time that I die. It would show Austin a whole other side to life. And he really does need to grow up. VOLCANO you can’t just off yourself because of a tail.
LUCKY I’m not going to off myself. I’m going to die no matter what. I’m just saying that if I had a choice right now… I think that I would kill myself anyways. By doing that, I could really show Austin a something he’s never seen, and that he’s going to experience anyways. And maybe that’s a good thing. This will just be a minor setback for him.
VOLCANO He will never forget this.
LUCKY Good, I don’t want him to forget this. I don’t want him to forget me. And being the first thing in his life that gives him true sadness, a true pain will guarentee me a spot in his memory forever.
VOLCANO For the last time you aren’t going to die.
LUCKY My feet are going numb. Say what your going to say to me now. Or better yet I’ll imagine it since that’s what I’ve been doing this whole time anyways. You would tell me first off that I’m not going to die. I’d just ignore you. And then once you realized that I wasn’t lying you would tell me that I have been a great friend. I have brought you back great stories and that I’m really not as dumb as I think I am. You would say that not only my tail was beautiful but everything about me was. Maybe not physically but yes, on the inside. You would say, “I know you were never given a chance but I know you could have gone on to do even better things than that Australian gecko” You would then tell me that you really did enjoy my company. Maybe I gave you things to think about? Maybe when I slept next to you, you were glad that you had someone by your side. So maybe this was coming at a good time. I lost my tail but I found my purpose. Well that’s all that I have to say. I think I’m done talking for now. I’m just gonna lay here until, well, the end.
(LUCKY lays down at the foot of the volcano. He touches where his tail once was, looks at his reflection in the cage and lays down on the floor.)
VOLCANO(voiced by a speaker) Lucky wake up. Get up. It’s not funny. Austin’s coming. Lucky! Luckyyy! Lucky?