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Spaced Out Forum > Spaced > Spaced: Above and Beyond > Shaun of the Dead
hey guys!

Im a media student who is starting preperations for her dissertation. on the effects of referencing in films, specifically shaun...

So my topic is the numerous references in shaun and how you as fans feel that effects your enjoyment.

Basically, i think personally that when i get a nod to another film/director or whatever that the film becomes more personal to me.

Any thoughts would be greatly appriciated
I don't know that I'd say it makes a film more personal to me, but more personable, certainly.

When you catch a Romero, or a Fulci reference, or what have you, not only do you get the initial enjoyment of the gag, but you get a nice, smug sensation of being in on the joke. It taps into a primitive area of the brain that directly influences the general sense of superiority nerds and film buffs alike feel over Joe Matinee and his popcorn-speckled ilk.

It doesn't break the fourth wall, but it acknowledges it, and helps draw you in.
When I watch a movie for the first time, generally speaking, I go into a bit of a trance and I almost never pick up those kinds of subtle references unless they hit me over the head like a blunt object because I'm engrossed in the storytelling.

When I first saw Shaun, I didn't pick up even half of the references. Then, when I watched the Shaun easter egg where they subtitled with trivia, I was blown away. I mean, I caught some of it first time around, but I wasn't prepared for exactly HOW layered the film was with references, homages and inside jokes. I so wish I was British so I could have laughed at the Cornetto joke. It's brilliant. I love it. I agree with omniscia. It's like a shout-out to all their homies -- but if you don't get the references, that's OK, too. They're not excluding you from the joke because the whole movie is an homage and so, if you like this movie, you might go back and watch others or other Edgar Wright stuff ... as I did. They are inviting you to participate. I watched Shaun again after watching Spaced and the movie took on a WHOLE other level.

It's very much like watching Star Wars. Every time I watch them (any of them, including Phantom Menace ... LOL!) I see references that Lucas is making to other films AND his own films. Edgar Wright is tops among that cinematic tradition.
Having recently ordered Goddard's Tout Va Bien it got me thinking. The opening titles in SOTD, could be said to mimic some of the scenes in TVB. In particular, there is the supermarket scene; the camera panning slowly from left to right.
Goddard uses this as a repeated motif in the film and as a device for the alienation technique; whereby the director wants to let the auidence know they're watching a film. Kind of like a knowing look by an actor to the camera when there's been an in-joke, or something.
Whether or not this was a deliberate referencing of Goddard's work, I don't know, but there are parallels.
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