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SHAUN OF THE DEAD TRAILER

ANALYSIS

The trailer first begins with a flash transition from the Rogue Pictures logo
to a close up shot of the actors legs as he is shuffling forward and has the
diegetic sound of zombie like groans. This is then complemented by slow
and eerie non diegetic asynchrous music. By doing this, misleads the
audience into believing that this is a genuine scary horror movie as it
follows the conventions of zombies. This is then contrasted when the
camera pans upward to reveal that it is in fact the main character yawning
after waking up. This initially sets the comedic tone of the trailer and the
music switches to fast, upbeat music.

This is then rapidly cut to a sequence of fast close up shots of the


characters everyday life. This could be viewed as poking fun at action
movies as it is a convention of the genre, however, instead of
performing tasks that have a high sense of danger, the character is
doing boring tasks, but the use of editing makes them appear more
exciting than they actually are. This can be seen through the use of
rapid zoom ins and whip pans. Speeding up the sequence makes the
audience feel uncomfortable and on edge, which makes it extremely
effective. In this sequence, there are frequent uses of the colour red
(badge, jam, tie). This is a colour that connotes danger and violence,
which can be a form of proairetic coding, suggesting that these are
themes that will be seen throughout the film.

Throughout the next sequence, the audience is introduced to the protagonists


personality. His body language and facial expressions can suggest that he is a goofy
character blagging his way through life. His bad luck is also made clear in a scene where
we see him give his love interest flowers and a card, however, he has picked up a greeting
card that says mum on it. This can establish a more personal connection between the
audience and the character as he is a normal person, thus making him more relatable.
This can also be emphasised using slower jumpcuts and the introduction of dialogue from
him. Throughout this sequence, the narrator uses rhetorical questions such as do you do
the same dead end job every day? and is your love life dying on its feet?. The use of the
words dead and dying are effectively used as puns and foreshadows the main events of
the film. This then creates more humour within the trailer as it shows the audience the
apocalyptic theme which the characters are so oblivious to.
4.The narrator then reveals the punchline as he says Ever feel like
youre turning into azombie. This then makes the audience feel
that perhaps there is a serious aspect to the film as all the upbeat
music stops, changing into slow and eerie accompaniment. The
next scene takes place in a pub, which we can assume is a large
part of Ed and Shauns friendship. The camera then cuts to a
medium close up of someone, that we can assume is a zombie,
silhouetted behind a blurred window and can be seen banging on
the window. It then cuts away to a two shot of Ed and Shaun.
When the pair notice this strange situation, they initially have
facial expressions portraying shock. However, this dramatic build-
up of tension is dismissed when they begin to laugh and shake
their heads whilst remarking pisshead. This is an effective layout
as it makes the audience realise that there will be very few serious
scenes in the film due to the nature of Ed and Shauns relationship.
This scene also presents one of the films main themes which is
comparing the public to zombies.

The music and jump cuts then become faster, which can portray the
climax point of the trailer and keeps the audience intrigued and
entertained. Within this next scene, it cuts between several frantic
news reports explaining the current zombie apocalypse happening
around them that they are unaware of. The panic is also heightened
by editing the news report sequence to make it appear static and
cutting quickly between different scenes of chaos throughout the
town. This then creates an effective contrast as it cuts to a medium
shot of Ed and Shaun sat on the sofa watching the news, allowing the
chaos to unfold around them.

Intertitles are used to create an effect on the audience within


the trailer. This can be shown by the quote from his sofa. This
further reinforces the laziness of the characters and suggests
that they would be happy sat on the sofa doing nothing. The
intertitles then state that a hero must rise. This can create
humour using the verb rise as it can be interpreted quite
literally: he must rise from the sofa. It can also be viewed as
humorous as from what we have seen of Ed and Shaun up to
now in the trailer, they appear far from heroic, making the
audience intrigued to find out if they can actually rise to the
challenge and solve the zombie apocalypse.

The design of the intertitles is the same that is used in all of the
Shaun of the Dead advertisement campaigns. This creates
continuity throughout and makes it more recognisable for the
audience. The overall design is conventional of the horror genre
by using big, bold capitalised letters with weathered text effects.
Making it also suited to the dramatic apocalyptic genre of the
film.
The last scene is key in the trailer as it gives the audience the last bit of humour
that they will then remember. This effect is increased as the scene also
conforms to the convention of having the final scene in between the titles and
final credits. The scene consists of Ed and Shaun facing each other with a
zombie in between them being the major focus and giving the audience a
central point of view. The camera focus alters from Ed and Shaun to the zombie
whilst they take part in a comical musical duet. The two characters are in focus
when looking at each other and singing, but as soon as they turn their head it
focuses on the zombie who fills in the song by his moan. This dramatizes the
lead up to the zombies moan and adds to the humour of the scene, creating an
effect on the reader. The scene also has extreme low lighting and mist
surrounding the scene.

The scene is then cut to the final credits in which a fast and upbeat trumpet
track plays in the background. This accompaniment is contrapuntal when
considering the zombie horror theme, whereas is effective in portraying the
films comedy genre.

Overall, I feel that this film is extremely effective in


challenging and conforming to stereotypes of both the
zombie horror genre and the comedy genre. This is a reason
for its success in the film industry making it well-recognisable
around the world