Sunday, 14 October 2007

Task 6 - Detailed Analysis Of Clip

This clip is the final scene from Children Of Men.

The clip begins with a long shot of Theo and Kee getting into a boat in a tunnel. The long shot, combined with low key lighting highlights the grim setting and atmosphere, a theme present throughout the film as it attempts to create a realistic dystopian society without alienating its audience. This is most evident through the film's lack of advanced technology. In this clip, a very old and ruggid looking row-boat is used as opposed to a flashy and expensive boat which sci-fi audiences will have come accustomed to when watching films set in the future.

As Theo begins to row the boat out of the tunnel, non-diegtic sound is introduced in the form of music. It parallels everything in the scene, from the atmosphere to the setting and from the characters feelings to the audience's sense of climax. Diegetic sound continues to play to keep the audience engrossed in what is happening in the scene.

Almost immediately however, the non-diegetic sound cuts as Theo and Kee exit the tunnel. Instead, the audience (at this point left in a position where they expect a new equilibrium to form as the film is approaching it's end) are forced to listen to the harsh sounds of gun fire and bomb explosions in the background. This is because the director wants the audience to realise that whilst Theo and Kee's adventure may be nearing it's climax, the conflicts that exist throughout the film are far from being concluded, something which the audience can then relate to current affairs.

Long shots are first used when Theo and Kee exit the tunnel. Again, this to highlight the setting. Visibility is very vague as there seems to be either a thick fog or a large cloud of smoke possibly caused from the gun battle nearby. The boat is seen as a shadow amongst this fog and this in turn highlights the theme of a dystopian society and isolation. Gradually, medium shots and close-up shots are used as Theo and Kee reach their destination and begin to converse. These shots are used to concentrate more on the mise-en-scene aspect of the scene. The clothes worn by both characters are old and ruggid and more importantly, identical to present day clothing. Reverse shots are used between Theo and Kee to show their facial expressions which present them as very tired but with a wave of relief.

At this point, non-diegetic sound is again faded in as Theo begins to deliver his final speech. This is simply to contribute to the dramatic effect of a final scene. At the same time, a medium shot of Theo holding Kee's hand is used, and this arguably presents Theo in a heroic way. The fact that the male is seen as the hero conforms to both traditional and stereotypical ideologies of the male hero and Propp's theory of character roles in films.

In perhaps an unexpected twist, Theo appears to die. The scene ends with Kee saying "the boat has come", which shows their journey has now finally come to an end and with this, the scene slowly fades out to black as the non-digetic sound becomes louder. The fact that the director chooses not to show what will happen with Kee and her baby creates an enigma (Barth) as the audience are left to make their own assumptions.

The fact that the audience are left to think at the end of the film is important as this is what the director aims to do throughout the film. He raises issues in the film which the audience can draw comparisons with events happening in the world at present, and this is a key point in arguing that 'Children Of Men' is indeed not a typical sci-fi film.

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