The Sounds of Halloween

It’s Halloween and you’re watching your favorite horror (scary) film today. Can you hear it? It’s the squeak (making a high-pitched sound) of an old door, a high-pitched (with high sounds) scream, the sound of thunder (loud crashing sound during storms). These are all sounds you may hear in popular horror movies thanks to Jack Foley.

Jack Foley (1891-1967) left his mark on (became well known and remembered for) the film industry by developing techniques for many popular sound effects (sounds heard in a movie, play, or TV show, but not made by the actors). He is best known for including environmental or ambient (in the surrounding area; happening around something) sounds into films. In fact, the people who do this type of work today are known as “Foley artists.”

Before Jack Foley’s techniques were invented, films usually used pre-recorded (created and captured earlier) sounds, which were added later. But Foley changed this by creating the sounds in real time (when they were needed in the films). The sounds could include anything from a telephone ring, a squeaky door, footsteps (the sound of one’s feet hitting the ground as one walks), to the sound of clothing rustling (sound of fabric moving) as people walk.

The sound effects are intended to enhance (improve; make better) the film, making it feel more realistic (similar to real life). Without those sound effects, films may feel too quiet and even uncomfortable for viewers. The best sound effects sound and feel seamless (without being separate or different), so the audience doesn’t realize that those sounds are not what the actors are actually producing.

Foley effects are especially important when films are dubbed in another language (with the dialogue being presented in another language), because when the dubbing replaces the original language, it also replaces all other sounds. As a result, those sounds must be added back in with each dubbed version.

So the next time you watch a film, listen for the work these Foley artists. They help to make us believe what’s on the screen.

~ ESLPod Team

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Image Credit: From Wikipedia
* This post was adapted from “Culture Note” from Daily English 1226. To see the rest of the Learning Guide, including a Glossary, Sample Sentences, Comprehension Questions, a Complete Transcript of the entire lesson and more, become a Select English Member.
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19 Responses to The Sounds of Halloween

  1. Peter says:

    Funnily enough , I ,in fact, caught a movie to get into the sprit of Halloween.
    I didn’t go for classic or retro movies.
    Instead ,I took in a movie released last Friday
    “ the happy death day “
    the movie didn’t take me there, though.
    It is scary , in a sense
    But not scary enough.
    It is more funny than scary, I must say

    It didn’t take me to a creepy ,spooky place I was hopping it would do.
    Well , It was the whole idea in the first place : for the movie to put me in a Halloweeny mood.
    In other words , the movie didn’t serve its purpose.

    That said , I like the novelty of the plot. It is a fresh take in the genre.
    For one thing ,I admire the script writer courage.
    In my book ,It takes courage to come up with some fresh ideas in a movie genre with entrenched ,stablished story lines.
    I personally think ,
    As a writer you roll
    the dice on that.
    I mean , it is a toss up.

    There is no telling how the audience will react to the ground breaking fresh ideas for a movie.
    With the writer reputation on the line, it indeed ,takes courage and initiative on the writer part.
    I applaud that
    I very much like the fresh approach the movie takes.

    The movie’s main Protagonist relives an unrelenting Groundhog Day over and over to solve -let’s just say -some puzzle at hand.
    I don’t wanna spoil the movie for you.

    To sum up , I like the movie but it didn’t put me in a halloweeny place , mood if u will.
    Anyways , that is life
    We can have it all, well
    We could if you are lucky enough.
    Luck and me were not besties from the start. :))

    I enjoyed the movie let’s leave it at that.
    As I mentioned
    It is more funny than scary


  2. Peter says:

    Hi Emiliano
    Nice to hear from you.
    Refere to “ dominant “ part of your post
    I don’t know about that.
    I m just trying bro
    U are too kind my friend.

    Refer to the rest of ur post ,
    I hear you ,my good man
    U see
    The way I see it. Writing is a form of art. Like other form of arts ,an artist needs to be inspired , to be in a mood.
    When I m not in a mood. Or , when words don’t come to me. I leave it as it is and go do some other stuff. In other words, I let ideas and words ferment in my brain and when I -at a later time ,came back to the writing board, words and idea flushing out of me like a bad case of diarrhoea:)))


  3. Peter says:

    I m saddened by the series of cowardly acts of terrors we are witnessing across the world. The latest : what went down last night in New Yorker in an area popular with huggers and cyclers.
    All deplorable and all the more proofs that the US president is right !!!


  4. emiliano says:

    True Peter, that is so as you said.
    What is the problem about writing now?
    Well, it is that my inspiration is in Spanish my own language.
    In fact late months I have written just a lot.
    It is funny that one of the countries where I have been read more it is just Canada.
    I think you know perfectly well this country, don´t you?.
    May be Spanish it is the second language over there?
    It has to be so, Spanish the second language as last three months 40 thousand of visits to my own blog have been from Canda what is incredible before because from Canada I have not so many, in fact few.

    So, I agree with you Peter, inspiration is necessary to write and I have it because I am really too sad.
    Being sad or having some problems it is what the writer needs to work, to make his poems, to say something about his feelings and so on.
    Be in mind that more than a million one hundred thousand there are the visits emiliano has in his blog.
    I don´t know.
    Just a mystery for me.
    I have not any explanation for the fact that so many people round the world could be interested in my own writing.
    I have to be very grateful to Jeff, Lucy or Warren because it was here the place where I learn how to write, how to say words of some interest, and of course to be grateful to the lot of friends that have passed by this Blog.
    Thank you to more than a hundred blogers along the last may be ten years?.
    Yes ten years, September 2007 was the first time I just did the same act I am doing now.
    Just writing.

    Thank you dear professors you are the best, you teach me English and the
    way of writing in English or Spanish, that is more or less the same.


  5. emiliano says:

    This is my chance to say something more in English, my second language…in fact may be I am now a bilingual odd chap that sometime is thinking even in English, incredible.

    Well talking about the above subject Halloween it a pity that I don´t like this feast a single bit.
    No I don´t like Halloween, it is not my tradition despite now in Spain everybody is
    celebrating Halloween since some years.
    Business that´s all,
    Celebrating Halloween here in Madrid and other cities there are thousand of dollars or euros going on.
    Lot of shopping, everywhere and everyone buying some kind of silly thing to celebrate it, why?, Here in my country we have never celebrate this kind of feast
    that I don´t understand at all.
    I know that over there in EE.UU. it is a tradition that comes from ancient Celtic harvest festivals, particularly the Gaelic festival Samhain; that such festivals may have had pagan roots; and that Samhain itself was Christianized as Halloween by the early Church.
    Not here of course, it was in the Celt Ireland and afterward English copy the ancient feast and sent it to its colony in EE.UU., where business is business and Halloween it is a good way to spent hundred thousand of dollars.

    No, as a rule I have my own criteria and usually I don´t like to follow the easy way of doing which ever thing every one does.
    31st of October it is a night to remember the ones who went away and usually I do that.
    No please, dancing?, having horrible garments on my body?. No never.

    Sorry, but it seems to me that millions in this country are really mad.
    Fifteen years ago nobody celebrate a feast like Halloween, now? It is like a plague
    that has come from USA.
    Sorry to every one there in this country EE.UU, but real subject it is so.

    We copy everything that comes from your country Jeff, now we have also Black Friday and it sure that soon we will have also Thanks Giving as a family celebration.

    Living to see……it is good? it is bad? I don´t really know, but as a matter of
    fact I do not like to imitate, to me it is better to have our own traditions and to be
    original, not an imitation country…….what a pity poor Spain.

    Regards, emiliano

  6. emiliano says:

    Well there is a real thing I like very much that could ha some relation
    with Halloween:

    “Michael Jackson Video of Thriller”

    Yes, I like it very much, but first time I saw it on the TV. here in Spain it was 31st December 1983 and I was shocked by the quality of the video and the music, absolutely genial and so different.

    Michael Jackson was a genius and the director of the video John Landis was a genius too.

    Sorry about what I said about Halloween but I can´t lye about my opinion and


  7. Peter says:

    This my country bro
    So I know a great deal about it
    There are two official languages to Canada
    English and French
    Ontario is an English language province with Toronto as its capitol
    But Quebec is a French slacking province
    And belive me when I tell u that people in Quebec can not speak any English for the lost part. So does people dwelling in Ontario
    There are 8 provinces in Canada and a number of territories
    In the Territories the population are very sparse due to the rough weather condition,
    In some terrains of territories out North -Yellowknife fir example -people lives in igloos.
    i can’t speak a word of French
    Spanish is not the second language here
    But I think in the us it is

    A variation of Spanish.
    I think in some part of the US people speak Mexican Spanish.

    The same as French language in Quebec. I heard from French people that Quechuan speaks French in a way that it feels like they speak a different language


  8. Peter says:

    Dear Emiliano ,
    Glad to see that we have something in common -that is -we both seek solace in writing.
    Well , you -as u mentioned -in Spanish for the most part.

    I m seeking solace here merely because writing here solaces me.

    Well, I -like you -some times have hemming and hawing going on before Committing to it. I mean taking the pen:).

    Having said that , there is always something happens that put me right in the mood.
    Well, honest ,
    Mostly , the first dozes of coffee is the culprit here.:)

    I m telling you ,Morning coffee is a big impetus for me.
    U know , I can’t speak for anyone else -but as for me -one , two sips through my coffee , I feel like anything possible.

    Don’t get me wrong bro
    I m not addicted to coffee or anything.
    Well , that is exactly the point
    I mean , since I m not addicted , the coffee has this effect on me. First sip in ,all of sudden, I feel this burst of energy running through my vein.
    Such a rush.!!!

    Well , to be one hundred percent honest with you ,almost all the digital trail u see of me around eslpod block all happening during my morning coffee or thereafter.

    It all happens before I set myself in my cubical at work. Boy , it dampen my spirt , kills all the boost , all all the good feelings go down the drain with it.

    I like every joe out there need to pay the damn bills.
    So what u do

    Just roll with the punches


  9. Peter says:


    It is Poppy time

    Once again Canadians across the country donning bright red poppies -mostly on their left lapel- to honour and thank veterans for their service.
    Once agin, The Royal Canadian legion’s poppy is being given away in the subway stations and malls as a symbol during the remembrance period which is typically from the end of October to the conclusion of the remembrance period on Nov .11.
    We wear poppies as it is an international symbol of remembrance
    It is not something peculiar to Canada.
    It is a world-wide recognized symbol.

    We commonly wear it on the left side by our hearts.
    As a display of affection and support.
    Traditionally speaking , poppies are given for free but people always donate something.
    No one actually take them for free.

    Some people donate sizeable donations.
    I myself was an eyewitness to a generous donation done by a lady last year
    She bought one poppy for the amount of a c-note – 100 dollars.
    Volunteers hold poppies in trays by the entrance doors of mall , subway stations and so on. There is this clear square box on each tray by the poppies. there is this small opening -slot if u will- on top of the clear box for people to slide money in.
    There is no fixed price to it
    People contribute whatever they feel like.

    The raised money is used to support veterans and their families, Canadian arm Forbes and RCMP ( police )
    It is all for a good cause
    I m wearing two poppies on my left lapel as we speak.

    I never took Remembrance Day lightly


  10. Peter says:

    Once again , good is in the air

    All the early decorations are preluding a festive holiday season full of joy , happiness and laughter for all people who celebrate it and for all people who sit on the sidelines.
    Walking through a mall located in core down ,I saw the first signs of Christmass.
    Small artificial Christmas trees here or there. The incremental cheerful changes in the stores window dressings till it gets all Christmassy in the days close to Christmass. Boy , I wish I world became a broken record at this time of the year or was put in a loop for good!

    Sure , My work tasks are quadrupled in days towards to Christmas. I am literally chain to my cubical at work ,snowed under if you will 🙂
    But , who cares as long as i see happy faces pacing the streets , feel happiness in the air , and witness humanity at its heights


  11. emiliano says:

    First of all thank you Peter or your full explanation of your country Canada.

    May I say something?
    When I was twenty or even less I wanted to go to Canada as an immigrant, but I could not go because first I had to make military training for more than a year and
    a half.
    Being twenty I knew nothing of English, not a single word as I was studding French
    at the school as all the young boys and girls here in Spain, but as I wanted to go to the British Columbia, Canada, where English is spoken I started to learn English.
    Of course I studied a lot about Canada, I knew such a lot of things about that your country that I could write nearly a book.

    Working in a Bank in five years I could asked for a voluntary leave and they respect my work for at least four years.
    Finishing my military training after eighteen months I knew Cuca, fall in love and all the ideas of going to Canada disappeared, I only wanted to be with her and for that reason I remain here in Madrid.
    By that time I could speak English quite well, took the exam for the Cambridge Lower tittle and pass the exam.
    Also I took another exam at the Bank and passing it I could increase my salary speaking English.

    Yes, that is my youth story so you may see I did not meet Cuca possible emiliano could be in Canada,
    Possible Vancouver where the weather is better not so cold.
    Toronto is very very cold more than the Vancouver Island and coming from a warm country I prefer warm Vancouver better that the continent.

    Thank you again Peter, but you has been talking nearly a specialist in Canada country.
    Of course I did not know if the Spanish was a language to teach in your country.

    In EE.UU. Yes, I know it perfectly well, as I know that our dear Jeff know Spanish perfectly.
    Well I think Jeff know five languages more or less, English, Spanish, Italian, French, Latin and some other old language.
    Jeff is a phenomenon by all means, you know that dear Peter.

    My best, and see you. emiliano

  12. emiliano says:

    By the way, if I have gone to Canada, Vancouver, my idea was working as draftsman
    or designer as you prefer, of course I had the carer here in Spain and the Official Tittle, I did not know if I could con validate it in Canada, but that was my idea.
    I leave Industrial Engineer at the second course so yes, I had some good training to work in Canada not as a Bank employer of course.

    It was not possible but I met the best person I could imagine being absolutely happy with her, my dear Cuca, bye. emiliano

  13. emiliano says:

    Sorry employer not Bank´s employee……….that´s very different. bye.

  14. Peter says:

    Helo world
    It is pouring down rain here.
    The dam rain kept rattling the sky light window in the ceiling of my kitchen and the full length double paned windows of my living room.
    I m just trying to draw a picture for you here.
    The rattly sound of the rapid rain that was hitting the windows in my corner unit mixed with the hawl of the rushing wind in the dead of night was nothing short of the Hickok movie scenes.
    Well ,
    I wasn’t scared or anything
    But the noise of nature rioting had made it impossible for me to sleep.
    Believe you me ,I tried hard to put myself to sleep. I counted north of 1000 sheeps all cute and wooly
    Even the damn sheep couldn’t put me to sleep
    So ,
    I ended up climbing out my goose down , snuggly comforter and out of bed
    I rushed to kitchen whipped up a cup of coca
    And set myself up with the latest in the world of eslpod.
    As I was re-reading Jeff ‘s post , I reach to the point when he says
    “He left a mark on “
    I said to myself
    I didn’t know the phrase
    How on earth did I miss it in the first take ,rather try. “

    It is simple
    Once my good people at eslpod hub put a post up there
    All I think about is to skim , fast read the whole thing and write down some comments about it.
    Well , admittedly , some thing relevant or irrelevant.
    U know As long as I can depress the blog digital paper even though it is not even remotely related to the topic at hand.i know that I improving my writing abilities.
    Because ,in my book, regardless what u write, as long as you write , you will get better at it.

    I remember first time I was gonna write a comment here. Boy , it took me forever and I kept consulting internet.
    Well , back then , internet was my cheat sheet.

    Over 10 years passed , and I m fessing up now.
    pathetic !!!
    I know.

    I remember for quite a few months I dreaded writing a comment as I knew for fact that I was a lousy writer.

    However , I was pushing my self anyways.
    I knew , it was the only way.
    One year or so in ,as an active ,attentive participant of eslpod blog, I felt like I have found myself a foothold. So I started writing more confidently. And -get that- couldn’t wait for the next post to come up.
    Over the past decades folks , eslpod blog has been and still is the only media I ‘v been using to -first build my self some writing skills and then hone them up.
    Folks ,
    10 years and some odds after , I m glad to announce
    That I m writing business letters at work like it is nobody’s business.
    I nail them on daily basis
    5 years ago even the though of writing a business letter was scary enough to make me wet myself:)
    Folks I look no further as to how on earth I got where I m right now.
    Since It is a no brainer,
    I owe it to our dear professors Jeff ,Lucy , and warren and my dear classmates in eslpod realm that never judged my silly mistakes.

    Well i m not getting hyper emotional or anything here
    I m just saying
    Over the past decades and so my only means of practise has always been
    Just eslpod blog and nothing else.


  15. Peter says:

    Refer to ur last comment
    Truthfully ,
    I like Spain better
    I would trade places with you any minute of any day.
    I have been in Spain for quite sometimes
    There is this huge park in Madrid where people gather in group in the evening. Man
    I used to go hang there every evening. There is big pound right in the the park with historic monument and sculpture all around. The park is obscenely vast.
    Madrid is beautiful and warm
    And , fruits are all organic and delicious down in Spain
    Enery time I travel down down all I eat is fruits and vegetables.

    And boy ,
    Aren’t Spanish women hot!!!?

    People are very friendly
    There is a warmth about them
    Spain is touristy country
    And I can tell , over years Spaniards have dropped a tourist subculture , a tourist ettiqute If u will
    Some might say ,They have developed tolerance for tourists

    Very tourist friendly
    Very welcoming and trusting

    I have frequented Spain like quite times and every single time I took away a lot of good memories and always the travels left a good test in my month.


  16. emiliano says:

    Today a year from the dead of one of the greatest singers and poets, Leonard Cohen born in Montreal pass away in Los Angeles while he was sleepy a day like today and we lost one of the best.
    At home his voice has been with me day after day giving his nice company with his poems and nice incredible songs.

    Thank you Leonard Cohen you will be always in my heart and best feelings listening to your songs and poems.
    Despite he was born in Montreal all his songs and poems were in English, just an enigma that I have to look for, why?.

    Everybody Knows
    Leonard Cohen

    Everybody knows that the dice are loaded
    Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed
    Everybody knows the war is over
    Everybody knows the good guys lost
    Everybody knows the fight was fixed
    The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
    That’s how it goes
    Everybody knows
    Everybody knows that the boat is leaking
    Everybody knows that the captain lied
    Everybody got this broken feeling
    Like their father or their dog just died
    Everybody talking to their pockets
    Everybody wants a box of chocolates
    And a long-stem rose
    Everybody knows
    Everybody knows that you love me baby
    Everybody knows that you really do
    Everybody knows that you’ve been faithful
    Ah, give or take a night or two
    Everybody knows you’ve been discreet
    But there were so many people you just had to meet
    Without your…

    Thanks dear, emiliano

  17. Tania says:


    Thank you, dear Emiliano.
    As always, you are my favorite poet.

    I know that Emiliano, Dan and Aecio celebrate
    their birthday in November.
    And Emiliano likes plum cakes.

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY, my dear blog friends!

    Best wishes,


  18. Peter says:

    Another holiday season ,Christmas ,new year eve and one never addressed question.

    How to make a resolution stick!?

    Anyone !?

    My last year resolutions were first : to stick to a healthy diet and ride of my love handles : generally my waste line. And , while at it burn off a pound or two. Guess what I did it.
    My love handled shrunk and lost 5 pounds
    I m 6.3 ( 190 ) tall
    196Ib( 88 kilo )
    I feel healthy and agile.

    My second resolution was to get into habit of reading magazinee and news papers
    Well , I m glad to abnounce that I read a hand full of prestigious ,reputable ,and globally recognized magazines on a daily basis. To be more accurate , 2 hours a day on average. My goal was to improve my English abilities. Guess what , I did it big time!!!

    I stuck to my major resolutions I made last year at New Year’s Eve. I remember my friends mocking me. Well , the joke is on them,now
    Theft said, never met any girl as it was my third resoultion. well , in all fairness , it was not just my call. I went it alone last years. And all the facts points out that I have to go through the holiday season snag like last year.

    Well no complain
    Two out of three is not a bad result

    Any hoo ,
    U know
    I made those resolution stuck because Truthfully i never went out of my way to make them happen.
    I m a salad lover anyway
    U can tell my dogged obsession with the damn language.
    So , I better rephrase my question

    How to make our unsolicited resolutions stick !?

    Anyone !?


  19. emiliano says:

    Thank you Tania mine is 29 so I am Sagittarius
    too much temper but not always.

    Good memory….thanks again dear friend.

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