This article investigates the emotive potency of horror soundtracks. The account
illuminates the potency of aural elements in horror cinema to engage spectators body
in the light of a philosophical framework of emotion, namely, the embodied appraisal
theories of emotion. The significance of aural elements in horror cinema has been
gaining recognition in film studies. Yet it still receives relatively scarce
attention in the philosophical accounts of film music and cinematic horror, which
tend to underappreciate the power of horror film sound and music in inducing
emotions. My investigation aims both to address the lacuna, and facilitate dialogue
between the two disciplines.
design and patterns of colour and scale. As regards sound, each chapter carefully distinguishes different components on a soundtrack, delineating diegetic from non-diegeticsound, and evaluating the roles of elements such as music, dialogue, voice-over, bodily sounds, performed and non-performed sounds. Attending to sound design, contributors address motifs, repetition and rhythm in both music and non-musical sound. Consideration is also given to the significance of quietness, the absence of sounds, and silence. Across the volume as a whole there is a tendency for
In television scholarship, sound and image have been attended to in different ways, but image has historically dominated. The chapters gathered here attend to both: they weigh the impact and significance of specific choices of sound and image, explore their interactions, and assess their roles in establishing meaning and style. The contributors address a wide range of technical and stylistic elements relating to the television image. They consider production design choices, the spatial organisation of the television frame and how camera movements position and reposition parts of the visible world. They explore mise-en-scène, landscapes and backgrounds, settings and scenery, and costumes and props. They attend to details of actors’ performances, as well as lighting design and patterns of colour and scale. As regards sound, each chapter distinguishes different components on a soundtrack, delineating diegetic from non-diegetic sound, and evaluating the roles of elements such as music, dialogue, voice-over, bodily sounds, performed and non-performed sounds. Attending to sound design, contributors address motifs, repetition and rhythm in both music and non-musical sound. Consideration is also given to the significance of quietness, the absence of sounds, and silence. Programmes studied comprise The Twilight Zone, Inspector Morse, Children of the Stones, Dancing on the Edge, Road, Twin Peaks: The Return, Bodyguard, The Walking Dead and Mad Men. Sound and image are evaluated across these examples from a wide range of television forms, formats and genres, which includes series, serial and one-off dramas, children’s programmes, science fiction, thrillers and detective shows.
about what they are seeing). Arguably cinema has more consistently explored sound's potential in terms of the latter function than television. Whereas film has its roots in spectacle, heightened by the affective promptings of non-diegeticsound, television drama has historically relied more on dialogue-driven narrative to engage audiences. This was attributable in part to television's status as the domestic successor to radio, in part to a commercial model predicated on a fast and repetitive production turnaround, and in part to technical limitations. However
it is this iconic image, usually accompanied by the diegeticsound either of a bell ringing (‘Service of All the Dead’, ‘The Wolvercote Tongue’, ‘Deadly Slumber’, ‘The Daughters of Cain’) or classical music being listened to by Morse (on his record player in ‘Last Seen Wearing’, at a live recital in ‘Twilight of the Gods’), that resonates for Sparks, since it works so effectively to establish the rarefied environment into which the viewer is about to be plunged ( Figure 2
silence. If there is any diegeticsound, it is used as a sound
effect or even as a musical element
the scenes recall silent-film aesthetics.
The scenes in the three films
containing transformative film-musical moments constitute what may be
labelled film-music dramas, which are narrated in a very different way
compared to other parts of the film. A look at Sawdust and Tinsel
provides an example. The scene in question is the extended flashback at
the beginning of the film. 23 The
these categories occurs in the Wallace and Gromit film The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005), as a character’s blood-curdling announcement about the power of the monstrous creature is followed by a series of crashing organ chords. The music’s instrumentation, pitch and volume recall a horror movie’s score and tempt the viewer to identify it confidently as non-diegeticsound; mischievously, however, the next shot proves it to be diegetic after all, generated by an overexcited organist who was initially off-screen (see Figure 10 ). If this snatch of music crosses
sound, as each subtly undercuts and challenges the supremacy of the other. Like Gene Vincent's song, ‘In the mood for dancing’ seems jarringly incongruous in the dilapidation of the room that forms the real life ‘set’ for the action. As the scene progresses, the relationship of diegetic and non-diegeticsound becomes indistinct as Clarke plays with (and sometimes erases) the boundary between these two states.
‘I'm in the mood for dancing’ reached number three in the UK charts in February 1980. Coming six years before the play's broadcast on
parts of Connemara. He begins with a shot of the valleys strewn with granite and
stagnant pools of water, moves to a shot of the mountains covered in mist, then
shows a high angle bird’s eye view shot of the Atlantic shoreline squeezed in by
wild grasses, and finally shows a thicket of verdant ferns amidst a grove of trees.
During this entire sequence, there are only diegeticsounds of the external shots,
which mostly consist of wind blowing through the leaves of the ash trees and
waves crashing upon the rocky shore. Not only do silence and space guide the
Sounds and images in The Twilight Zone, ‘The Invaders’
his closing narration at the end of the episode reflects on issues of physical scale (the ‘invaders’ are ‘tiny beings from the tiny place called Earth’) in a homily about the hubris of space exploration. So, a key aspect of this chapter's analysis is the manipulation of viewers’ knowledge in the episode, and the ways that visual style works with speech, diegeticsound and music to control this.
Format and experimentation
The Twilight Zone was an American anthology series of half-hour science fiction and