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Examine the way the two scenes from "The Sixth Sense" are presented in order to maintain the audience's belief that Malcolm Crowe is alive. Evaluate the importance of the two scenes in the film as a whole.

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Introduction

Media Coursework "The Sixth Sense" Examine the way the two scenes from "The Sixth Sense" are presented in order to maintain the audience's belief that Malcolm Crowe is alive. Evaluate the importance of the two scenes in the film as a whole. In the film, "The Sixth Sense", the Director M. Night Shyamalan tries to convince the audience that the child psychiatrist Malcolm Crowe is alive. The film is set in Philadelphia, America, and is about Malcolm Crowe's struggle to save a young boy who sees ghosts. The Director has not created a stereotypical horror story, but a film in the genre of a supernatural thriller. As I evaluate the two scenes, I will examine the subtle ways that the Director indicates that Dr Crowe is dead, how they contribute to the film as a whole, and how he keeps up the illusion that Malcolm Crowe is alive. The first scene I have examined is scene five, where there is an aerial shot of Malcolm Crowe as he walks along the street, next to a muted red building. Later on, I will be describing how the colour red symbolises ghostly activity, together with how this manifests itself throughout the film. The aerial camera shot indicates that something otherworldly is watching Dr Crowe, and this presence is there for the entirety of the film. The next shot is of Lynn, Cole's mum, and Dr Crowe. Lynn is staring at her hands, and, as Cole enters the scene, both adults look up. The manner in which the two people sit, and the way in which they act when Cole comes into the house, gives us the impression that they have just finished a conversation. When Lynn was looking at her hands, we could believe that she was upset and hurt by the things that Malcolm revealed to her, however, on closer examination, we can see that Lynn never actually looks directly at Malcolm, but straight past him, or at her lap. ...read more.

Middle

Another scene that shows their relationship in a contrasting light is when Malcolm comes home one evening and finds the video of their wedding playing on the television. The bridesmaid on the video is talking to Malcolm, telling him that he has to look after Anna. After feeling sad about how he has been neglecting her Malcolm goes upstairs and finds Anna in the shower. Seeing her reflection in the mirror, when she is completely unaware of his presence, realistic or ghostly, he notices a bottle of anti-depressants in the medicine cupboard. This shocks him, and the reality of how neglected Anna has been feeling comes crashing down on Malcolm. Atmospheric music builds up in the background as Malcolm leans against the cupboard, in both shame and sorrow. The music never gets too loud, but loud enough to be able to hear it clearly. Another significant relationship is that shown between Cole and his teacher. During a history class, Cole puts his hand up in order to answer a question, about what their school building used to be used for. Cole says that it used to be a place where they hanged people. A boy at the chalkboard, writing down everything that is being said, stops and stares at Cole. The teacher tries to correct Cole and he looks at Cole patronisingly, but Cole tells him not to. While the teacher is getting more confused, and Cole is getting angrier, he reveals that his teacher used to stutter, and that he was called Stuttering Stanley at school. This information shocks the teacher, as he is unable to comprehend how Cole has knowledge of this. He starts getting nervous, and as Cole covers his eyes in an attempt to hide from the looks that the rest of the class are giving him, as well as the look from his teacher. We get an extreme close up of Cole's mouth, and see him repeating the teacher's former nickname over and over again. ...read more.

Conclusion

The strong red of the tent indicates the amount of ghostly activity in that area. Also, at Malcolm's house, the doorknob on the door leading to the basement is red, and light appears to be reflected into in, representing a depth of ghostly presence. The door leads to the basement, where Malcolm keeps his files. In the final scene, a table, obviously put there to prevent access to Malcolm's past life has blocked this same door. In the first scene that Cole meets Malcolm, he follows Cole into a church, and a camera shot shows that the large doors are red, with black studs in them. Red is important throughout the film, because it gives the audience something to relate to when they watch the film. At the beginning of the film the Director makes us believe that Malcolm survived the bullet wound and recovered. In the final shot of the first scene we see an aerial shot pulling back higher as Malcolm's spirit is taken, but the first shot of the second scene would indicate that Malcolm survived and is now trying to redeem himself and his professional career. Malcolm is sitting on a bench contemplating the similarities between Vincent's and Cole's health reports. The Director hoodwinks you into believing that Malcolm never stopped working, apart from to 'recover' from his wound. In conclusion, the link between the two scenes I have been evaluating, together with the rest of the film, show the different techniques that the Director utilises, particularly but not exclusively in scenes 5 and 6, to make it appear that Dr Crowe is alive, when in fact he has been expunged. The Director juxtaposes with skill and precision the reality and normality with the supernatural and other worldly ghostly arena. Some of the techniques used to epitomise this ghostly presence include aerial camera shots, mis-en-scenes with the colour red, and the different people Malcolm appears to interact with, especially Lynn and Anna. Mrs Crook 2nd February 07 Alex Doyle UTA 1 of 6 ...read more.

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