Jaws Tension

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Jaws is set on the once calm shores of Amity Island. It was a tourist destination with tourists flocking there every year for the beaches, but disaster stuck when a shark decides to use its calm water as a feeding ground. Stephen Spielberg’s movie Jaws was an R rated tension building movie, which shocked and terrified the people of the 70’s.Stephan Spielberg Builds up tension by what you can see, camera shots/angles and what you can hear.

The thing that builds up tension the most is the title sequence were the camera seems to be swimming in the murky water. The slow dramatic music builds up tension as the tempo gets faster and faster so it seems you are the shark that is approaching his prey. Then the music suddenly stops as if he has caught his prey. Then it switches scene from scary music to calm harmonica playing around a fire on the Shore of Amity Island. The fire creates a sense of safeness and the proximity from the water makes you think the youths aren’t going to be attacked. Until one girl (Chrissie) gets up and runs along the shore towards the water and the drunken boy follows her but passes out on the shore. The girl swims out far you can tell this because you can see a boy next to her. The tension builds up when you think she is being attacked when she sinks in to the water, but she raises also the water is black so you do no what is under her. You then get a view from below her and the music starts playing, so you know she is going to get attacked. The shark bites her leg a drags her around in the water, a close up shows the terror on her face, before the shark pulls her under. The technique he uses is camera angles and lighting. The next day chief Brodie gets called out and meets the boy who was with Chrissie, then they hear a whistle so they run towards it. The tension builds when it shows a on the police mans face who blew the whistle. He looks upset and shocked then the chief find Chrissies mangled arm buried in the sand.

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