Billie Elliot by BBC Films: Analysis

Categories: Film Analysis

Billie Elliot is a movie produced by BBC Films, which was released on Oct 12, 2001. Throughout the movie, there is a skillful use of camera use specifically the low-angle, zoom-in, and the tracking shot. There is also significant use of blocking specifically the lines and triangle techniques. And a wonderful use of darker tones, and props and wardrobe for the production design.

The opening shot of the “Dancing for Dad” scene, where Billy dances ballet in front of his dad Jackie there is a shot of Billy's companion Michael, which is wide, giving a feeling of segregation between the characters.

The low-angle shot additionally makes a sentiment of strengthening for Billy, implying to the way that he is going to last face his dad. The scene at that point slices to an over the shoulder zoom in on Billy's dad. This is so the group of spectators can check his feelings of outrage from finding the young men moving when he figures they should just be boxing.

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The shallow depth of field profundity makes the outward appearances increasingly self-evident. In this shot, his face is additionally definitely more exposed compared to Billie’s face, which is in the shadow of his father. This may speak to the way that Billy has been living under the harsh standard of his dad.

At the end of the scene, they use a tracking shot of Billy's dad leaving furiously as Billy comes after him. We can see Billy getting littler and progressively out of center out of sight, singling him out.

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In the shot, Billy and his dad look small since they are both overwhelmed by their environment; Jackie Elliot, due to the mining strike and his reaction to seeing his son do ballet, Billy, for his desire to dance. The last close-up is of Billy exhausted, and he just repeats his agony he is experiencing.

In the scene “Why Don't You Join In?” Billy watches ballet class while he is still wearing his boxing attire because his boxing instructor instructed him to give the ballet instructor the keys. Afterward, he walks into the ballet class and joins them. While he is practicing there is a shot on his blue and white boxing boots to show that he is the oddball out because all the other ballet students are wearing tutus. A few moments later in the same scene, Billie continues to dance is shown wearing a tank top and shorts struggling to hold his pose, while the other ballerinas are still wearing tutus and have no trouble holding the pose. I did this to point out Billy’s inexperience with ballet and he is the only male there.

Throughout the movie, there are props that are used to show Billy’s feelings towards his late mother, to show that he misses her. Which creates a sorrowful mood in the movie. For a few examples when Billy was talking to his father Jackie while he was playing his piano one morning, Jackie told Billy to do something, then Billy responded “Mom would have let me” then the camera turned to pictures of Billy’s mother which created a darker mood for the scene. Then while Billie was being trained to go to the ballet school with his instructor Sandra Wilkinson, he brought his mom's letters to him he was supposed to open when he turned 18, but he was too anxious he already read them. He brought his mother’s letters because those letters are considered sacred to him.

In a short scene where Jackie gives his son Billy a pair of boxing gloves that were once Billy’s grandfather, Billy is lying on his bed while Jackie is standing up staring at him. That line sets the power dynamic of Jackie being the alpha and Billy being the omega of that situation. In another scene where Billy’s brother Tony wakes up early and was about to leave the house with a weapon before his father Jackie stopped him. There was blocking with the triangle technique as Jackie was talking directly to his son Tony in front of him then Billie wakes up and is seen at the corner near the hallway the placement of their bodies create a triangle. To show that every one of those characters is vital to that scene.

The lighting in the boxing gym where Billy goes to boxing classes and ends up taking ballet classes as well has no lighting from a lightbulb. The lighting in the boxing gym comes from the outside, which makes the gym lighting dark. To show that the boxing people cannot afford to pay for lighting. In the final scene of the movie where Billy is about to do a ballet performance, his tone is brighter than all the other characters to keep the spotlight on him.

The literal explanation of Billy Elliot is a boy from County Durham wanting to become a ballet dancer, despite his father’s disapproval. His father wants Billy to do boxing instead of ballet, but this story is becoming of one’s age tale where Billy chooses ballet instead of boxing because the dancing makes him feel good, in contrast to getting beat in boxing.

A figurative explanation is a grandson of a world-famous soccer player, and the son of another world-famous soccer player is taking a soccer practice class. However, he does not enjoy soccer, as he is not good at it, he has a strict teacher. But his father wants him to continue going to soccer practices, he even gives him his grandfather’s cleats. One day after soccer practice, he sees a basketball class and gets interested. The basketball coach tells him to either join or go, he joins and he falls in love with the sport, but his father does not approve, but he does basketball anyway and he hopes to Make it big in basketball one day as he auditions to go to a basketball school.

I feel that the social commentary of Billy Elliot could affect society because, some parents want their children to do activities they are into not considering, how their children feel about it. For example, in the scene “A Disgrace to the Gloves” where Billy is boxing another student, Billy seems confused and scared. He looks very flustered inside. The boxing tells Billy, “Don’t just stand there, Elliot.” Then Billy moves around, but he moves like he is dancing not moving in a boxing position. Billy’s father is watching this happen seeing Billy confused and scared and he reacts by yelling to his son “Billy hit him!” a few moments later Billy gets punched in the face he falls down and loses the fight. Billy looks at his father while he is down, and his father looks angry with his face red and his hand on his head. Instead of being worried about Billy and boxing, he gives Billy boxing gloves Billy’s grandfather wore. Forcing him to box when he does not want to.

Updated: Feb 02, 2024
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Billie Elliot by BBC Films: Analysis. (2024, Feb 08). Retrieved from

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