The Reel Sounds of Violence

Friday, March 02, 2012


Most of us have been lucky enough to never witness someone's innards being spliced out of their body. Or someone's head being smashed into a wall. But in an action or horror film, we often believe that that's what actual violence sounds like. Deep in the Hollywood studios, sound editors have to create these sounds. How do they know what gruesome violence really sounds like? Brooke talks with Slate senior editor Daniel Engber who wrote about the battle between the real and created sound of violence.

Comments [4]

keirra levier

When real sound effects are being misconstrued by technology it creates us as individuals to question what real sounds are. Because of this people are beginning to see things that aren't even there. For example you know the sound of someone being punched but once you see movies it makes you question more what a real punch sound is. Listening to that sound over and over again you would forget what a real punch sound, sounds like. So now when you do hear the real sound it like amateur to you.

Mar. 05 2012 06:53 PM

thats crazy

Mar. 05 2012 06:01 PM

As someone who thrives on attention to sensory detail, this piece was right up my alley. I really enjoyed how this piece was formatted; the weaving of sounds from movies coupled with Mr. Engber's analysis was a treat to listen to, and his unique insight into the progression of sound design in cinema was very thought-provoking. Wonderful!

Mar. 04 2012 08:13 PM
Hugh from Olney, MD

I found the discussion of movie sounds of violence very interesting. It started me wondering whether the sights and sounds of violence in movies are involved in a race to the Grotesque. Could it be that the sights and sounds are escalating because the former ones are not getting the same reactions. What does this say about us moviegoers?

Mar. 03 2012 07:21 AM

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