When we think of film, we associate it with a visual experience as we sit in the darkness and watch images emerge on the screen. What we often don’t realise is how equally vital the role of sound plays as it stimulates one of our main senses. Human voices, gripping sound effects, and music all contribute as to why we get to enjoy movies so much.
A great example of how sound plays with our emotions can be found in the Omaha beach scene of Saving Private Ryan. This scene splits between moments above and below the water as the camera naturally bobs. Through the sound, viewers get a perspective of the struggle for survival found in a world of chaos just above the water. Your heart races and your senses grow anxious. When the view and sounds shift below the surface, suddenly it’s as if a duplicate world is exposed. Now it’s a gentle, simplistic, peaceful, and filtered melody of calm.
The Sound of Saving Private Ryan
When Ben Affleck directed Argo, the three diverse locations for filming made for three equally diverse realms of sound style and mixing, allowing the audience to really delve into each experience. In the scenes in Los Angeles, a more traditional sound mix is heard. For the scenes in Iran, the Tehran atmosphere has a distinctly aggressive mix, with raw, edgy overtones. While in Washington, the sounds keep tensions high for the audience. Transitions between the three are abrupt and notable. However, you’re so in tune with what’s happening that you don’t think about it, you just feel the shifts.
The Sound of Argo
Hugo uses sound to take viewers back to a different time in such a special way that even those who have never experienced Paris feel like they are there. The ticking arms of a clock, the tapping nails of a dog chasing quickly behind you, and the squealing rails of trains in and out of the station all make us immerse ourselves in the magical story. Even calculated moments of silence bring to life the powerful sound of this incredible film.
The Sound of Hugo
Peter Jackson’s 2005 King Kong remake is proof of the transformation sound brings to the big screen when mixed with visual effects. Among the three Academy awards this movie received, two were for best sound editing and best sound mixing. In comparison to the original 1933 film, it’s an example of the evolution that sound effects have taken over a seven-decade time span.
King Kong 1933 vs King Kong 2005
Sounds are manufactured
Go behind the scene and discover how sound are being created by Foley Artists