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Argue for or against this statement with reference to how Harvie Krumpet’s life is represented in the film. (you must make specific references to the techniques used by the film maker). Note: you are only allowed to use the word ‘belonging’ once. The need to be socially accepted and connected with others is an intrinsic yearning in humans. This desire to be included within a community or partnership is known as belonging; a fundamental need which molds a person’s identity.
Harvie Krumpet’ is a short, animated film written, directed and animated by Adam Elliot and produced by Melanie Coombs. The film demonstrates through its main character, Harvie Krumpet, that companionship and connection can influence one’s outlook as well as ideologies. By utilising numerous techniques (such as editing, metaphors, pathetic fallacy, symbolism, speech and music), the animation illustrates that Harvie Krumpet only ever fit in with other outcasts. The use of metaphoric images and editing proves that Harvie Krumpet was only accepted by misfits while he was young.
Due to Harvie’s Tourette syndrome, he was ostracised at school by the other students. He was only able to make friends with Bogush; another outcast. The two rejects are shown together outside with their backs to a wall of the school building. The barrier separating the two friends from the other students is a metaphor for the social divide excluding the misfits, and highlights the strong bond Harvie shares with Bogush. Another technique that proves the main character was rejected from society is editing.
While Harvie is at home with his insane mother, the camera cuts away multiple times, each time showing the house further away. These cuts give viewers an idea of how the public view the family, and give the impression that society pushes them away. This use of editing, as well as a metaphor, demonstrates that Harvie is only respected by those who are similarly misfortunate. Even while Harvie Krumpet is middle-aged he remains alienated from society and is only able to fit in with outcasts like himself, as is demonstrated by pathetic fallacy and symbolism.
Many things change in Harvie’s life; he is forced to move to Australia and finds a job at the Spotswood Dump. During the scene where Harvie attempts to make a friend at the dump, the sky is overcast and gloomy, which reflects the main character’s dismay when he is rejected. This technique is known as pathetic fallacy and efficiently illustrates Harvie’s isolation from ordinary people. Symbolism supports this idea, as Harvie is commonly seen alone, surrounded by the colour grey.
For example, even while the main character is working in a large factory, he is still shown alone in a dark, grey room. This melancholy shade reflects the loneliness he feels. Together with pathetic fallacy, these techniques reveal to the audience that Harvie Krumpet is a victim of stigma and is only able to belong with other misfits. To demonstrate that Harvie Krumpet only feels connected and valued by other outcasts when he is elderly, music and speech are utilised. When Harvie grows old and moves into a retirement home, he meets other people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.
He moves into a community that share similarities with Harvie and forms a group of friends who had been rejected by society just like himself. To illustrate that the main character fits in with this community, a bright and cheery tune is played as Harvie puts on a show for the group. The uplifting music is an example of non-diagetic sound and reflects how content the outcasts feel together. Another technique which highlights Harvie’s strong connection to misfits is speech. Throughout the film, the only words Harvie speaks are “Thank you”.
The central character says these to a lady who felt she did not belong even among a crowd of social rejects. These words are immensely significant and reveal just how powerful Harvie’s bond was with this outcast. It is clear that the elderly Harie Krumpet only fits in with other rejects through the use of music and speech. In conclusion, Harvie Krumpet only ever fits in with other outcasts throughout his life. This is supported and reinforced by the techniques of editing, metaphors, pathetic fallacy, symbolism, speech and music.
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