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How does the director of The Crucible make use of the medium of film to bring over the power of the drama?

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Introduction

How does the director of The Crucible make use of the medium of film to bring over the power of the drama? 'The Crucible' a modern drama by Arthur Miller, is a moving play about one man's struggle to stand up for what he knows is right In 1996 a film was made of the play with Miller writing the screenplay. In the film Hytner (the director) is aiming to catch the power and the emotional impact of the original drama. I am going to look closely at the scene where Elizabeth Proctor is charged as being a witch and at the last scene. I hope to show how Hytner has brings the play to life by using different camera angles and music. The Scene in Which Elizabeth is Taken away I am going to write about this scene from where the court officials come to search the Proctors' house. There is a very still silence as they enter the house. Before this there was a very heavy drum beat pounding in the background. It was like Elizabeth's heart beating because it was so fast and nervous. Now the danger is in her very house and the heartbeat has stopped. In the house all the candles are casting queer shadows on the wall which makes the atmosphere a little bit edgy because it is so dark. The camera sits in the darkest corner from time to time, watching all that goes on. ...read more.

Middle

This dispenses the idea that they are awkward with each other because they both look so happy that you can easily see that they love each other. There is no music and all there is to listen to be the sound of the sea and the conversation that John and Elizabeth are having. The camera adjusts from looking at John's face to looking at Elizabeth's face every couple of seconds. This is so we can see their entire face and expressions. It is almost like we are seeing what they are seeing. There is the occasional long shot from the direction of where the judges are standing which just reminds you just how serious the whole situation actually is. There is no music in this scene until John asks Elizabeth to forgive him when the string section of the orchestra come in playing a haunting melody hopeful yet at the same time desperately miserable. The music perhaps is a little like John's feelings. As he and Elizabeth embrace we see her view of the judges waiting to hang him. We then see John and Elizabeth hugging so tightly that they almost look like one person and see the sky behind them has lightened and is developing into a beautiful new dawn. This does not seem very suitable but then John turns and as the music crescendos he almost screams, "I want my life! ...read more.

Conclusion

The music quietens slightly and we can hear the women crying and blessing them and the men praying. Quite a few times we see through Proctor's eyes at the beautiful new day that has dawned and at the faces of the people in the crowd. As they mount the scaffold we see it from their point of view as they are going up the steps. Hytner repeats this with each person. When they are on the scaffold the camera follows the faces of Rebecca and Francis so you are reminded that the main story is not the only story. The camera then looks at the scaffold straight on and the music stops as they start to say the Lords Prayer. One by one they are pushed off and the camera focuses on Johns face. Then, there is a thud as John is pushed off and you are left looking at a gently creaking rope. This is extremely effectively filmed. It totally shocks you. This film is made substantially more powerful by the director's clever filming which makes it seem very real. Without such imaginative music and camera shots the film would not be as poignant and touching as it was. This film was filmed in a very imaginative and thought provoking way. Before I wrote this piece I had not realised how much thought had been put into the camera angles and music to make the film effective. The director, using camera angles and music, brought over the power of the drama excellently to create an intensely moving film. ...read more.

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