I made sure I watched several Alien scifi movies during this project; Contact, Paul, Aliens and the more resent War of the Worlds. I wanted to make sure I watched War of the Worlds specifically to take note of the sounds. I remember watching it a thinking how alien some of the noises where especially the thunder scene. Unfortunately i couldn’t find a clip with the sound, but it sounds like an electronic  panther , Very sharp and vicious sound and i’d like something similar just for the flashes of light in my clouds.

When i imaging my ship flying in a imagine it sounding like a low vibration similar to the sound of the machine in the clip below.

This scene was also intresting to see the effects they use for the beam. Having them evaporate into dust and just leaving the clouths intact i a really imaginitive idea.

One of the most compelling scence for me is when the bridge collapses, it is done very well

Watching the DVD extras it was intresting to see that in pre production they added lights to reflect later effects to be added in post production. For example, the scene where robbie is pulling away from his father during what looks like a battle, flashs of light were done with lights and not added in later. Also the flaming train scene, orange/ red lights were flashed on an off to simulate fire light, but the train was all added in CGI. This way the it looks more natural actually already being on the live action characters. (if that makes sense). Even the flickering laser light is a really light, I suppose this also helps the actors react of something real.

They used light to stylise the movie, giving it a misty grey look in the beginning of the movie, gradually becoming more colourful.

The VFX where run my Image, Light and Magic and i like the fact that some of the staff were actually on set. Something i hope my job will allow me to do.

I can see how important anamatics are for the development of storyboards and rough cuts. they used them a lot to illustrate timings movements and effects and these are so raw but do the job.

I also took a look at the transformers DVD I can see how much they actually use special effects instead of VFX and it has a really great impact when you then later add in all the extra VFX, in post, it makes for a great shot. So this is a big budget movie doing as much as they can the practical special effects way than leaving it to the VFX artists to add in post. Muzzle flashes are even done using blank flashes.

It was interesting to see how much training the actors go through to give a realistic performance, the actors playing the military guys were sent on actual military training. Unfortunately I couldn’t go through any training for my role in this film but it sure would have been fun to do a parachute jump out of a drop ship!