The film Pleasantville shows us the importance of change. Do you agree? In the film all the characters, inside and outside Pleasantville seem satisfied with who they are and have no desire to change, but during David and Jennifer’s stay they realize they are unsatisfied. Not knowing change was possible, the community of Pleasantville feel as if they need to adjust to this ‘change’ happening around them. Relationships end, the weather turns bad, choice and risk are introduced and confusion and pain start to occur. David, Betty and Jennifer are three characters who change throughout the film and show us the importance it has.
Some characters embrace the change whilst others try to resist it. The film Pleasantville portrays change as being positive in the long run, and shows the characters growth throughout the movie. David who is one of the main characters in the film gradually changes. His transformation built his self-esteem and grew his confidence to the point where he became someone the people of Pleasantville looked up to and saw as a hero. David is portrayed as geek in his real life. He has seen every episode of Pleasantville that he’s able to script it, like when he was watching the Pleasantville marathon he quoted ‘what’s a mother meant to do.
This unhealthy and bad obsession shows David doesn’t have anything better to do with his time and is detached from society and the real world. At the beginning of the film it showed David alone in the school ground talking to himself trying to build courage to talk to a girl he likes, but whilst in Pleasantville he builds his courage and confidence to ask a girl out and attempts to try and help people. Like when he gave bill Johnson the art book it encouraged bill to use his imagination and express himself. This encourages but to strengthen his process of change.
Also when he asks Margret out it shows David is confident in himself and is something he wouldn’t have done back home. When David is put iup for trial he proves that change is a good and positive thing if you let it be. His inspiring speech provokes the emotions of everyone in the courtroom and he claims ‘there are better things than pleasant. ’’ When David confronts his real mother it shows he no longer ingages in the artificial world. When he wipes away his mothers tears he tells her ‘theres no right house…no right car. ’ Ths shows david cares for his mum and his experience in Pleasantville taught him nothings perfect, as much as you try to be.
David’s connection with people has transformed him from being socially awkward and insecure with no self-esteem what so ever, to a confident caring role model whos change has formed david and Another key character in the film that conveys self-change is Betty. From the start Bettys life is monotonous and confined to her family. The breakfast scene establishes the idea where her routine is the same every day. Like the other characters she begins to see what there is more to life.
The moment when Betty and billy first meet triggered the change in her character. She develops feelings for this new man. Change is seen as being necessary and positive for Betty’s emotional growth. The bathroom scene shows Betty exploring her sexual awakening. This shows betty breaking away from her normal character. Change is irreversible for Betty. Her attempt to hide her true colour with makeup fails. When bill shows her Picasso painting of the weeping woman, Betty expresses the feelings of the weakling woman when she says ‘shes crying’ and tears trickle down her face that smear her makeup, showing her true colour.
Bill paints a nude portrait of her in vibrant colours across the soda shop window. This is the climax of Bettys change and cannot reverse what she’s done. She turned out into an independent woman. Before going to the court hearing, George asks her to put on her make-up but Betty refuses and says, ‘I don’t want it to go away. ’ This statement suggests that betty finds change refreshing and she likes it. The overall change in betty shows how far shes come from being the one whose life revolved around others and making them happy, to eing the one who make significant change in her life aand others.
Bettys transition was made easier due to the fact that she was willing to make changes and was curios by the thought of the unknown. In the last scene were Betty is sitting with George in the park bench, then he turns into bill and she says ‘what happends next. ’ This indicates theyre not afraid of change. Change is important because it is a way of learning. You can find a better way of doing things by trying different ways of doing things instead of doing them the same way.
Change can make things easier, more beneficial and also help people learn how things work and be able to adapt to different situations. In the film, Pleasantville, all characters experience change — not progress, which suggests all change is for the better, all changes immediately positive. Along with sex, art, and literature, all characters experience difficulties like prejudgment and rioting. While David experiences insecurity he develops into a self-confident leader, and while Jennifer suffers rebellion, she matures into an intelligent and meaningful lady.
The film most definitely takes the side of those people who in spite of difficulties work to embrace change or at the least to accept it and face it unafraid. Pleasantville opens by pointing out many negatives in our current world — but soon enough hints that there are problems if the fantasies we use to escape are too unreal. In the end, the best world seems to be one that balances both our supposed ideals and the real world. Dispite David’s initial resistance to change, David is better off for experiencing change in his life.
David changes from a socially inept individual through his own insecurity and inner belief to the self-confident and reassuring leader at Change is often seen as a positive thing, with the emphasis being on that if we change we become better, more advanced or stronger. But every change results in consequences, good and bad, and it is very difficult to predict the outcomes of every change made because it is complicated for us to see exactly how the future will unfold. There are many examples where change can be a very positive and productive force.
University/College: University of California
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 20 September 2016
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