The life stage of entering a new world is crucial for oneself, in requiring an individual to adopt optimistic branches in a plethora of life aspects. This perception is successfully conveyed through Stephen Daldry’s 2000 drama motion picture, Billy Elliot, and is assisted by the director’s application of the tools of film production. In enhancing the perspective communicated through J. C. Burke’s 2005 Australian novel, The Story Of Tom Brennan, the film clearly demonstrates the benefits of moving into the world.
The composer applies metaphorical mise-en-scene in establishing the notion that the lack of progressive connections forms barriers from entering a new world. The issue of family breakdown is communicated through Daldry’s use of the kitchen’s mise-en-scene where Mrs Wilkinson and Tony Elliot argue. The confined placement of objects, as well as low lighting, forms an overwhelming atmosphere, shaping the hardships faced by these shattered relationships. This is also delivered through Daldry’s motif of a brick wall that metaphorically encloses Billy from venturing into the world.
As Billy Elliot lacks a female role model, he is faced with barriers such as violence, which lowers both self-esteem, and optimistic perceptions. Likewise, this complements the character of Theresa Brennan and Burke’s notion that one must develop strong relationships in order to venture into the world. Constructing positive relationships and renewing one’s sense of self is central in the phases of metamorphosing into the world, as supported by Daldry’s use of camera shots and symbolism. A constantly progressive process of entering the world is supported by Daldry’s long shots of roads and bridges, which enhance the idea of travelling forward.
This is linked to The Story Of Tom Brennan and Tom’s constructive relationship with Brendan, as seen through his matured response in discovering the homosexuality of his uncle. The effective use of symbolism communicates a growth in character development, in contrasting the end results of the sub-journeys. The pathetic fallacy of rain, snow and clouds illustrates a strangling vibe that barricades Billy from entering the world, as a result of self-doubt, a lack of identity, and a lack of role models.
This contrasts to the cross shots of Billy Elliot’s confident body language through dancing and breaking through doors, as well as the low angle shots of Billy ascending stairs, metaphorically into a new world. A final stage of entering the world is confirmed through Daldry’s layered long shot of Billy and his father walking down a path, which leads towards an oceanic horizon. This complements the intimate, final moments of The Story Of Tom Brennan, in which Tom admits to have found himself through his relationship with Chrissy, as juxtaposed to his first, adverse impression of moving into the new town of Coghill.
Stephen Daldry is shown to successfully convey the process of venturing into the world, in elaborating on the progression of self and multiple bonds. By effectively applying the elements of cinematography, in a metaphorical manner, the director both enhances and complements the developing vibe, as communicated in J. C. Burke’s novel, The Story Of Tom Brennan. For one to enter a new world, it is therefore communicated that one must adopt affirmative perceptions of their present world.
Courtney from Study Moose
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