In The Dark

I created a four-minute fight scene for my Senior Practicum. But this wasn’t just any fight scene; other than the last two shots, the entire sequence was done in pitch-black darkness. The viewer had to rely on audio cues and illuminated objects (the window, the alarm clock, etc.) to follow along. Like Dana, they are in the dark.

I had taken a Hitchcock class the semester before, and I was bugged by the concept of “pure cinema.” Pure cinema is purely visual, and Hitchcock’s attempts at it were all highly visual, nearly silent sequences. (For example, Scotty’s first day following Madeline in Vertigo.) There is no dialogue, and atmospheric sound is kept to a bare minimum. In the Dark is the opposite; the visuals are sparse, and the narrative is moved along almost entirely by the audio.

In the Dark had its premiere screening Wednesday, May 1, 2002 at the Urban Word Cafe. It got a good reception, but I’m told it was hard to follow. Perhaps in a better director’s hands this might make more sense, but I think cutting out most of the visuals in a visual medium makes for some interesting, challenging work.

Dana Janine Miscia
Josh Matt Weeks
Camera Jim Lopezzo
Director Mike Mariano

In The Dark opening credit Dana’s silhouette Josh’s cell phone