Essay on What Is the Importance of Sound in Tv or Film, and How Can It Be Used Creatively in Driving the Narrative Forward?

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What is the importance of sound in TV or Film, and how can it be used creatively in driving the narrative forward?

‘More than half a century after the coming of sound, film criticism and theory still remain resolutely image-bound. Early filmmaker’s scepticism about the value of sound has been indirectly perpetuated by generations of critics for whom the cinema is an essentially visual art, sound serving as little more than a superfluous accompaniment.’ (Altman 1980 Pg 45) In this essay I will analyse why sound is important in film and how it is used to drive a narrative forward. I will start with an introduction to sound history and progress to the fundamental element that sound is in the film industry and how music, sound effects and
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Dialogue is one of the most important factors in driving a narrative, with dialogue the characters can say exactly what their thoughts and feelings are and the audience doesn’t have to try and figure it out.

A recent example of a film which uses sound to support why I believe sound is important is Hugo which was made in 2011, by Martin Scorsese. Which is a film set in 1930’s about a young boy named Hugo who lives in a train station after his dad passed away, and how he uncovers the mystery around his father’s automaton.
The opening of the film begins with the sound of rhythmic tick tock of clock clogs before we see the clogs in motion. This is an example of sound creating a rhythm before going into an orchestrated piece of music. When panning through the train station the music continues but you start to hear the sound of trains, whistles and people talking. This is an effect that Orson Wells liked to use in his films so that the audience could enjoy the music but self consciously hear the background ambiance. The music then changes to the music that is being played in the station that the characters would hear in that location; this is represented by people dancing. There is a scene when Hugo tries to steal a toy the music is very tense in the build up to him getting the toy, it then stops abruptly as he gets caught. This is an example of where music can make the audience