In all production tools of filmmaking, using sound effects is a fundamental factor in capturing a film’s escapist experience and the audience’s reactions. Although sound is not seen on-screen, it does play a crucial role in how films work, and in how it progresses narrative, develops characters and addresses significance. John Williams is an example of a composer whose work has established the importance of music within cinema, and how they play a fundamental role in the entire experience.
It may be fair to first point out that the question of this article has always been a conflicting issue that continuously floats around in the film industry. People often perceive the growing medium of cinema as a device for entertainment or as a brief, escapist distraction from society’s painful realities. This experience has impacted on how people think and behave within society, and Hollywood continue to question the extent to which films influence reality.
Like all social groups, people with disability have been portrayed in diverse ways in Hollywood, from stereotypical representations in horror to genuine inspirations in melodramas. Disability is represented as a metaphor through imagery or characters’ features, or as a direct subject within the narrative. The entire concept of genre is recycled from elements within society, and the relevant features of each specifically labels the disabled into a certain character type.
Since 1989, when Batman became a mainstream film series for DC, and in 2002 when Spider-Man kicked off Marvel’s campaign, the legacy of the superhero on the silver screen has progressively grown. Particularly throughout the 21st century and through to the 2010s decade, superhero adaptations and the science fiction genre have practically dominated the Hollywood film industry, with the vast majority becoming massive commercial triumphs. We have seen a number of films released each year, and in 2016 we are awaiting a variety of superhero/comic book adaptations from Marvel, DC and others.
There are a number of directors that have distinguished their own unique imagination into Hollywood and reflected it on the big screen. Directors who are considered ‘auteurs’ have the creative ability to make feature films that are based on their own imagination, are part of their personalities, or which they find as a genuine interest. One such example is Tim Burton, the eccentric filmmaker who broke through as an animator and storyboard artist in the 1970s to progressively becoming one of cinema’s most recognised directors.
Like a variety of genres in Hollywood, animation is a growing field that has been significant in various forms of media. There have been successful corporations across the globe that are not only skilled in putting hand-drawings and computer graphics to motion, but are also creative in their storytelling. Pixar Animation Studios is a vital example of an exceedingly successful animation company with an abundance of projects that have become cultural favourites.
With technological developments taking hold in Hollywood, perhaps the most prominent has been the use of motion capture. Motion capture is a technology that syndicates computer-generated effects with human performance. The idea, particularly within the science fiction and fantasy genres, is to produce further realism on part of an actor’s approach to a role and how they portray it.
A central attribute to a film’s success or failure is the performances of its stars as certain characters. Now, while it is usually the adult actors or the adult actresses who are the stand-out stars in a feature film, there are also roles where it is the child that puts a new perspective on the approach to and execution of acting. Like adults, the child stars can adapt from supporting roles to leading.