The genre is related to a culmination of technical, aesthetic, and narrative components like a romantic comedy, war movie, and so on. Different numbers of factors combine and create the definition of the genre.

This is an audience-led which Gratification Theory underlines. The genre codes and conventions are in a constant state of development, but only so long as new content is created. We talk about the genre as audience-led because the opinion of the people is fundamental to this.

If it’s a western we aspect to see a western. This doesn’t necessarily mean that we don’t use modern VFX aesthetics to create the illusion that is required though. VFX in most cases is not simply postproduction, is part of the overall piece.

A lot of genre work has an element that VFX artists were very part of the film.

Considerations for VFX producers:

  1. Practical production conventions directly impact VFX aesthetics
  2. Meaning cannot be supplanted or overshadowed by post-content
  3. Consistency in aesthetic is more important in genre films since audience spots issues with aesthetic continuity
  4. On-set involvement is vital. VFX in genre films is a full-stack workflow
  5. Frequency of set-piece needs to be consistent

In Once upon a time in the West, Sergio Leone used slow-motion as VFX, which perfectly marries his usual visual languages such as extreme close-ups and wide shots.

Comparative analysis between two movies

In this task, I am asked to compare two movies. My point is not to prove that all other genres are wrong, it is to show the values of the genre Thriller. The movies I chose are Parasite by Bong Joon Ho and Gone Girl by D. Fincher.

What happens when the movie you are watching turns into something completely different?

*Remember: Genre consists of four elements or parts: character, story, plot, and setting. An equation for remembering the genre is: Story (Action) + Plot + Character + Setting = Genre* 

Parasite by Bong Joon Ho (Korea, 2019)

Parasite, poster

Story (Action)

Just when you had a grasp of the character, plot, and themes, the floor falls out from underneath you. Parasite and its feel are upended. It has many tones shifts between comedy and menacing thriller.

The parasite is all about Power, those who have it (Park Family), and those who don’t (The Kims).

The Kim family has conned their way into becoming servants for the Parks. In the first half of the film, the tone is generally light and charming but then the director manages to change the genre and the tone along with the film shifting between a Comedy genre and Thriller.


The Kim family lives in a semi-basement and struggles to keep food on the table. Ki-woo, the son, received a scholar’s stone from a friend and a recommendation for a tutoring job with a wealthy family. So, Ki-woo and his sister forge credentials for the job. Thus begins the scam that sees each member of the Kim family infiltrating the upper-class Park family one by one.


Our first hint that something is wrong comes with the arrival of the ousted housekeeper and her presence is immediately unnerving. She’s soaked in rain; her face swollen; the grainy monitor; the unflattering angle and so on. All of this portrays her with a creepy appearance. At first, when she enters the room, the former housekeeper seems to be a comic character even though Bong Joon Ho immediately shifts the tone emphasizing her maniac expression. When she finally goes downstairs, the camera, the audience, and the character are all caught off guard. The gags and comedic tone of the first half are eventually replaced with high-stakes power shifts and horrific violence. The Kim family may be below the Parks in status, but even they can look down on Moon-gwang and her husband. This secret basement reveals an even lower level of status below what we had thought was the floor with the Kims.

Apart from that, something we need to underline about the Kims is the characters’ duplicity and manipulative skills that draw our attention also to the movie title “Parasite”.


Parasite shows the two faces of Seoul. The first one is related to Kim’s accommodation, nasty, dirty, and poorish. The second instead is represented by the Parks which is the exact opposite: clean, fancy, and extremely rich.

Gone Girl by David Fincher (U.S, 2014)

Gone Girl, scene

Even in this case, do we know what happens when the movie you are watching turns into something completely different?

Story (Action)

Also, Gone Girl has a climax that the audience never expected.

Unlike Parasite, Gone Girl does not share a comic tone and everything appears to be dark and suspicious since the very first shot. Although the film has this slight difference, the manipulative factor and the plot twist recur even here.


On the occasion of his fifth wedding anniversary, Nick Dunne reports that his wife, Amy, has gone missing. Under pressure from the police and a growing media frenzy, Nick’s portrait of a blissful union begins to crumble. Soon his lies, deceits, and strange behavior have everyone asking the same dark question: Did Nick Dunne kill his wife?


Nick: Amy’s husband. He comes from a poor working-class family with an emotionally distant and verbally abusive father. Nick ends up repressing his emotions so that people will like him keeping up the good guy persona he built for himself. Nick needs to be the good guy and always in control. However, this is his Achille’s heel. Because he is afraid of showing negative emotions and drawing attention, he gives the appearance of not caring, of being cold and distant. When Amy begins to criticize Nick for not being the person she thought he was, he begins to shut her out and act in a passive-aggressive manner till Nick starts having an affair.

Amy: Nick’s wife. Amy grew up wealthy with parents who were famous for writing children’s book series. She is a chameleon. She tries on different personalities as women try on different dresses, and matches these personalities to the people she interacts with. For Nick, Amy adopts what she calls the Cool Girl persona. According to Amy, a Cool Girl is someone who becomes whatever the partner wants her to be. Amy has been a master of retribution since childhood, and she uses lies and manipulation to make people pay without ever getting caught.


The Midwest is about as far from the big city as you can get. Nick and Amy moved to Nick’s hometown, North Carthage. North Carthage is quite much the most depressing place ever, but most importantly provides a symbolic portrait of what their marriage has become. When they start ending communication, fighting, and getting depressed, the city becomes marked by economic devastation during a time of financial hardship, leading North Carthage to be a good place to set a story about a failing relationship.

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