Clean, quiet, scary movies: The Others
in Alejandro Amenábar
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The Others began as a small-scale, art film project for the European market. The intended setting was Chile, Amenábar's birthplace. For Amenábar the original impulse to write La casa arose in early 1998 during the marketing campaign for Abre los ojos. Panicked by the complexity of his second film and fearing the worst from the national box-office and his fans, he began developing an idea with a much simpler, more restrained, linear narrative. This chapter considers briefly the issue of deal making between the Spanish and American co-pro partners. It looks at aspects of performance and film technique, including mise-en-scene and sound, particularly Amenabar's score for the film. And after a brief comment on narrative and the 'surprise ending', the chapter discusses the film in relation to some of its main intertexts and also as a product which benefits from the late-1990s counter-trend in DIY, minimalist 'quiet horror'.

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