Last Updated 07 Jul 2020

Compare the opening of the novel ‘Jaws’ with the opening of the film

Category Novel
Essay type Film Analysis
Words 1125 (4 pages)
Views 375

The opening of the novel is at the beginning very quiet and kind of strange, it describes the shark 'Jaws' as the great fish and it describes how it moves 'propelled by short sweeps of it's crescent tail. It raises a kind of tension already because you don't yet know what is going to happen and that is quiet scary in itself. It makes out that it is a very dark environment and that makes it more scary as well. It said that the fish survived only by moving and it was bearing water through it's gills, the graphic of what the shark is doing and how it is moving is very detailed.

We do not know where it is yet but we can guess because it is a fish so it must be in the sea, the sea is described as the night water so that emphasises the darkness of the sea which creates more tension. When the woman says she is going for a swim the audience doesn't want her to because they know something is going to happen to her because of the opening scene of the shark underwater. When she does go in and keeps going deeper, you know that something bad is going to happen to her. Even if she doesn't know that, and because the novel says that she can't swim very well, you get worried that she won't be able to get away from danger.

The tension rises when danger gets closer and when it hits the graphic of the situation is very, very detailed. 'Her groping fingers had found a nub of bone and tattered flesh' it says, after that the lady dies and the man is asleep, being very vulnerable. Give a detailed description of the opening of the film. Explain what media / film devices Steven Spielberg uses and what affect they have upon the audience. At the beginning of the film there is a dolphin like sound then the 'Jaws' theme music, it is a scary type of music, it could make tension in a different scene, but not at the beginning because nothing is happening.

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Stephen Spielberg put the view in the sharks perspective, it is an underwater view of the great fish swimming along. He bit after that changes to a nice, calm scene of a beach party, there is a lot of people there so that shows safety, everyone is safe there. It shows everyone having a good time and it has lively, fun music on too, the camera then turns to look at a man, then the lady, then the man. The man goes over to the lady and they start talking, the lady gets up and goes over to the sea to have a swim, the man follows, this raises a bit of tension because the lady is going into the sea which is unwelcoming, dark and sinister.

The camera pans out to a big picture of the sea that looks very evil. The man on the beach falls to sleep because he was drunk but the lady is still in the sea. She swims deeper and then you see a big picture of the sea and the lady swimming and she puts her leg in the air and then goes underwater, I think Stephen Spielberg did this to represent the dorsal fin of a shark, the tension is still rising at this point as you can feel her getting closer to danger.

The view suddenly turns to the fish's perspective again and the same scary, weird music is put on, it shows the fish looking up at the swimming lady from below, after a few more seconds it goes back to the view of the lady and she takes a deep breath very quickly, she gasps a few times then starts screaming, the music is even loader now and the fish pulls her across, she grabs onto a buoy and it rings loader than it had been, she gets dragged along the water a few more times then she dies. The drunken man had fallen asleep on the beach, knowing nothing about what had just gone on, a very vulnerable man.

The camera shot goes back to the man, asleep on the beach with the sun just coming up beside him and the tips of the waves surrounding him. Similarities about the novel and film At the start of the film the first simile is that it is obvious that the girls name is Christie and it is in the film too. He man falls asleep in both of them although they both seem very different when you are reading and watching them. As, as before the man doesn't have a name in the novel or film, at the beginning and near when Christie gets killed it is in the sharks perspective.

As in the book, the shark is described a great fish, this rises the tension a bit as well. At the end of the opening sequences returns a sense of calm, both novel and film have symbolic uses of dark and light. Again, both the novel and film are alternate between the shark and the woman - the camera shots in the film and the paragraphs in the novel get shorter and speed up. The perspective and style of the attack is similar because the woman is pulled and dragged in the water. Differences between the novel 'Jaws' and the film

As you would find out if you read the novel you will see that the graphic of the attack at the beginning is outstanding, it is scary and maybe terrifying. In the film there is not as much graphic and it is not as scary because of that. When the attack is taking place in the film the buoy is an important feature because it symbolises that no-one can hear her and that she is in great danger. In the film there is a larger group at the beach party, this symbolises safety in numbers and in the novel there is only two people at the beach.

Because there is a lot of people in the film it adds to the honour and there is a lot of potential resources. This also lets the audience identify themselves with the scene. The novel seems and most properly is colder and more scientific than the film because the film can't make use of the writing that the novel has. In the film the music adds to the mounting of tension and suspense but in the novel you have to use your imagination. In the film the music tone is threatening and sinister. In the novel, the house and lights in it represent hope and security but in the film it is the fire and the beach party.

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Compare the opening of the novel ‘Jaws’ with the opening of the film. (2017, Dec 11). Retrieved from https://phdessay.com/compare-opening-novel-jaws-opening-film/

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