A Man Escaped - the Distinctive Functionality of Film Sound – Movie Review Example

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The paper “ A Man Escaped - the Distinctive Functionality of Film Sound” is a  meaty example of a movie review on music. The movie: “ A Man Escaped” , directed by Robert Bresson, depicts the manner for which musical sounds can be employed within a film to promote different sound techniques. The plot of the film unfolds in France in the early 1940s. Fontaine, who happens to be a resistant fighter and has been arrested by the Germans, has just been imprisoned and condemned to be executed in a later period.

While still serving time and thus, waiting for the commencement of his execution, he devises an escape plan by way of loosening some of the boards covering his cell door and, also generating some useful ropes. Just as Fontaine, the main character, is about to plan his action another boy dubbed Jost is immediately also assigned to his cell. He goes ahead to plan with him and they both manage to escape. Research indicates that film music can depict a psychological aspect that is far much better than dialogue can stipulate its application (Burt, 1994).

The utilization of film music is most crucial and effective especially in the case where it is planned in advance- when the film is within the scripting phase. It can be efficiently used to provoke the emotions of an audience so that they can relate to the events of the film at hand. Consequently, it has the influence to transform aspects of naturalism within the films into reality (Burt, 1994). In essence, the musical contribution to a given film should be set to generate a supra-reality; which portrays a situation whereby the aspects of literary naturalism are perceptually changed.

In this manner, the audience to a film can showcase distinctive insights into a different set of behaviors and motivations that is somehow not possible with the aegis of naturalism (Burt, 1994). Following this line of argument, it can thus be said that film music can thus enter into a plot of a given film in a way that adds a third perspective to both visuals and words. The portrayal of music in this manner sets to generate the supra-reality of a rather many-faceted perspective of character behavior that should be formulated in a way that motivates the composer in the course of selecting scenes that should be executed and thus, those that can be left in a silent manner.

While it is important to understand that film music does not possess a catalytic capacity to alter the audiences’ perception of both visuals and words, it, however; depicts a significant level of corollary, which defines the effect of image and words upon the music (Burt, 1994).   Film Music Analysis: “ A Man Escaped” Throughout the entire film, the aspect of musical sounds has been adopted to portray different crucial functionalities.

In essence, most of Bresson’ s films put much emphasis on soundtrack since he believes that sound might play a cinematic role just in a similar way as images. In fact, in specific scenes of this film, the director adopts the aspect of sound technique in a much higher position in comparison to the images compelling the audiences to listen carefully and relate with the unfolding of the entire theme. The following are ways through which music sounds have been employed in the film and their meanings.  



Burt, G. 1994. The art of film music. Northeastern University Press, Boston, MA

Bullerjahn, C & Guldenring, M. 1994. An empirical investigation of the effects of film music using qualitative content analysis. Psychomusicology, 13, pp.99-118

Boltz, M 2001. Musical soundtracks as a schematic influence on the cognitive processing of filmed events, Music Perception, 18, 4: pp. 427-454.

Prendergast, R, M 1992. A critical study of music in films, 2nd Ed. Norton & Company, New York

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