In conventional Ghost stories and horror films Tense music and spooky sounds and lighting are expected to make the film more scary and jumpy for the viewer. We expect to see blood and gory scenes of violence and hate. The usage of music and lighting also makes the movie much more scary. Music is used if a ghost or baddy is creeping up on a victim. It makes the viewer get very tense and on edge with the build up of dragged on slow music. Also, if a ghost jumps out on a victim, the music has a sudden scream or gush of loud sharp music. Lights are also used to make a ghost story scarier.
If a victim is in cellar or somewhere scary like that, he will usually be in the lighter areas and the ghosts (monsters) will usually be in the darker areas, however, we, the viewers can always see the ghost creeping about well before the victim. This is done to try to get us on edge and get us thinking what could happen next. In English media we have been studying the use of camera tricks and the use of sound and lighting in the film “The 6^th sense”, this film is not a conventional ghost or horror movie because music and lighting have Not been used to make the 2 scenes that I am studying in any way.
The two scenes I am studying in this film, are, the scene where Malcolm is at Cole’s House, and the scene where Malcolm goes to meet his wife at the posh restaurant. I am studying these two scenes because both of them have been deliberately made to fool the viewer into thinking that Malcolm Crow is actually alive. The main characters in this film are. Cole, a young boy who can see and interact with ghosts but is afraid to tell anybody because he will be bullied and called a freak. Malcolm Crow is a Psychiatrist who was shot in is apartment at the start of the film and is now a ghost, but he doesn’t et know this until the end of the film.
This scene opens with Malcolm and Cole’s Mother sitting in the front room. Obviously Cole’s Mother dose not know Malcolm is there because she cannot see ghosts. But the angle of the camera makes it look as if they had been talking and are now waiting for Cole to get home from school. As Cole comes in, Malcolm and Coles Mum both look at Cole. This makes us think that Malcolm is alive because he is interacting with surrounding people and so we just assume that he is not dead. As Cole arrives, he and his mother discuss their day together.
Cole says hat he was chosen first for recess and his class mates lifted him up on they’re shoulders and cheered for him, this is not actually what happened, this is what Cole wants to happen. After they talk, Coles mother says, you have got an hour; we are made to think that she is saying you’ve got an hour with Malcolm, but she really means, you have an hour until tea is ready. In this whole scene, we are lead to believe that Cole’s mother has invited Malcolm round to see Cole. Next, Malcolm plays a mind game with Cole to try to get him to sit down and talk. Cole wins and he can go out and play.
In the next scene I have to evaluate, Malcolm has just arrived late for his anniversary. As he enters the restaurant, he says, “sorry I am late, I thought you meant the other restaurant” as Malcolm sits down, it appears that his wife is looking at him but she is actually looking at the waiter who is bringing her the bill for the meal, and we can tell that she is pretty annoyed and Malcolm is late because his wife has just finished her meal and is drinking her cup of coffee and getting ready to leave. When Malcolm is talking to her, it appears that she is listening to him but is not going to answer him.
As the waiter puts the bill on the table, Malcolm goes to pay it but she pulls it towards her, this looks like she is showing her anger for him being late, but really she can not even see him. As Malcolm’s wife leaves the table. She says “happy anniversary Malcolm” we are lead to think she is saying it to show that she is angry, but she is upset that Malcolm cant be there with her. The director has made these 2 scenes very alike in terms of making Malcolm appear to be alive. The ways Malcolm interacts with the surroundings in these 2 scenes show no areas of him being dead.
Apart rom the fact that in the second scene, Malcolm’s wife is wearing red, and in the 6^th sense, people wearing red are the people who have been touched with death. I think that the scene where Malcolm is at Cole’s house makes him look more alive because Cole is actually talking to him, whereas in the restaurant, his wife doesn’t, because she can’t. I think that the director has achieved what he wanted us to think in this film because everybody I have asked had no clue at all that Malcolm, was a ghost until the end where he goes home to speak to his wife in her sleep and he realises he has no wedding ring on.
These two scenes are important to the rest of the film because in all of the other scenes with ghosts in, music and lighting is used to make the ghosts very scary and so in the scenes with Malcolm in, there is no scary music or lighting so we just assume that he isn’t a ghost. Thought the film, camera tricks and different camera positions have been used to make Malcolm look more real and to make him appear to be interacting with the living world more. So overall, I think that this film has accomplished its aim to fool the viewer and I the first time I saw it, I believed that Malcolm was not a ghost too.