I've just come back from seeing Stoker - what a great film. Very strong, and potent storytelling. One of the features was a forensic-style magnification of detail, and lots of space and time for elements to settle in.
You become acutely aware of the background elements, and it's very interesting hearing these mixed UP, very, very loud - as the character hears with great precision and accuracy, the audience are invited to engage in that experience too.
One of the most striking uses I thought was in the woods scene - the woodpecker sound was just spine chilling (it's just a woodpecker, I know), and there were these slightly processed bird calls that sounded dischordant and alien. They kept on getting louder, and louder, and louder...until you realise you're in a horror context. Then they stop.
Powerful filmmaking, great sound design.
If you've seen it, post your thoughts