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February 1995, Week 5


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Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Leo Bankersen <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 28 Feb 1995 16:14:50 CST
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
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----------------------------Original message----------------------------
On 24 Feb 1995 MR BILL A TUSCHALL writes:
>I feel sound is as much an artistic part of
>a film as much as any other. Whether or not the filmmaker
>tries to create a sense of realism, or uses the sound to
>create something else, it is such an integral part.
>For example, there is nothing like the complete sound of a
>thunderstorm in surround sound, or THX. Or the sound of
>bullets flying over one's head in the theater (...)
I didn't mean to suggest that sound isn't an integral part of the
film experience. I was just guessing at an explanation for the
fact that surround-sound sometimes can create disturbing
effects. I mainly had plot-related sounds in mind, like dialoge
or footsteps. Obviously, music is much easier accepted in a
surround-sound-situation. Flying bullets might be an intermediate
To make things more complicated: maybe we should discern two
aspects of a film. Plain old storytelling (with or without
music), and the creation of an almost physical experience for the
viewer. Surround-sound clearly can contribute to this experience,
though I still have my doubts about the contribution to the
>As far as realism, I have yet to have an
>experience where a complete orchestra plays in the
>background as I ride off into the sunset with the heroine!
Come to think of it, it's curious indeed how easily we accept
this 'nonrealistic' music to accompany the image :-)
Are we just used to it, or is there a reason? Even when there is
a *real* orchestra present in the cinema, it's hardly a problem.
Leo Bankersen
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