I have been lucky enough to have this year's Halloween film, No Diggin' Here - a film about M.R. James, Aldeburgh and A Warning To The Curious - premiered on the BFI's website. It was a Halloween treat that, until I saw it happen in full, I didn't quite believe, but I count myself incredibly … Continue reading Short Film – No Diggin’ Here.
There are few writers that figure more prominently in everything I do than the teller of beautiful Edwardian ghost stories, M.R. James. Alongside W.G. Sebald, J.G. Ballard, Alan Garner and Virginia Woolf, his writing holds a great power over me with its familiar yet unfamiliar worlds. His writing preys upon my mind at regular intervals, … Continue reading Trailer – No Diggin’ Here.
Salthouse Marshes began life in a strange way. Having chatted about adapting Algernon Blackwood's The Willows with Robert Macfarlane (who had wanted to re-set it in England), there was always to be a "haunted waterway" film on the cards. But, after constant reading of the narrative of The Willows, the thought of organising the filming … Continue reading Short Film – Salthouse Marshes
With the ideas of the Folk Horror Chain starting to seem incomplete as the sub-genre grows in popularity and is more analysed, it's about time further facets, themes, ideas and traits were added to the conversation. This will be the first in a number of pieces about other traits not accounted for or addressed in … Continue reading The Ritual Of Craft In Folk Horror.
Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Part 4. Part 5. Part 6. Part 7. Part 8. Conclusions. "If its central characteristics remained immune to change, the ghost story did keep pace with the times through progressive modernization of settings and language." - Cox (xix, 1991). From analysis of the BBC Ghost Stories, it is clear … Continue reading The Aural Aesthetics Of Ghosts in BBC Ghost Stories – Part 9 (Conclusions).
Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Part 4. Part 5. Part 6. "The Ghost In The Machine": The Haunting Nature Of Unnatural Diegetic Sound. "M.R. James' objects are imbued with our deepest fears, deepest terrors and resonances. The whistle can bring up a storm or bring a monster from the deep. The crown, that if … Continue reading The Aural Aesthetics Of Ghosts In BBC Ghost Stories – Part 7 (Haunted Objects).
Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Part 4. Part 5. Human Interaction With The Landscape And Its Soundscape. "The wind was bitter from the north, but was at his back when he set out for the Globe. He quickly rattled and clashed through the shingle and gained the sand, upon which, but for the groynes … Continue reading The Aural Aesthetics of Ghosts in BBC Ghost Stories – Part 6 (Excavation).
(Watch in at least 480p.) I've been sitting on this ghost story for a while having finished it late in the summer. Even though I was excited to get something out there that I was actually happy with, it just didn't feel right putting out a ghost story when it was still warm outside. The … Continue reading Short Film – The Coastal Path.
Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Nondiegetic Musical Themes And Textures. "Indeed, the celestial voices of film music do resemble a phantom in several significant ways. They are ephemeral, they are not 'substantial' or do not constitute part of what audiences cognise as important in the film, and have an effect that is not apparent." … Continue reading The Aural Aesthetics of Ghosts in BBC Ghost Stories – Part 4 (Music).
Part 1. Part 2. A "Disembodied Voice" of some form is a clear norm for representing a creature that, by its very definition, is now bodiless. This means that, as an aural technique, it is used frequently throughout many other ghost stories as well. In Lawrence Gordon Clark's films, the aural trait occurs several times … Continue reading The Aural Aesthetics of Ghosts in BBC Ghost Stories – Part 3 (William Ager).