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Blue Remembered Hills by Dennis Potter

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Unit 2: Blue Remembered Hills by Dennis Potter Task 1: Response 2) After reading the introduction to the play I realized that it was not going to be a 'friendly' play about a group of seven year olds. There was going to be something to give it a malicious twist. The play begins with one of the small boys playing happily by themselves. My first reaction was seeing as the children are being played by adults this will look quite 'odd'. What I was having to understand was that it was being played by adults to emphasise that children don't always play in a 'friendly' matter. When the boy starts pretending he is an aeroplane he quotes: 'Then be all dead. Dead. Dead. Burnt to nothing'. He has said that all the people he has imagined will die and be burnt. This is a very disturbing thing for such a young child to be thinking, instead we would expect him to say: 'and they will all land softly' or a similar gentle mannered idea. As two friends, Peter and Willie are united and their behaviour seems quite normal and playful. However, what shocked me was when Peter started beating Willie physically over an apple. His behaviour is very spiteful and threatens to 'spit right in the middle' of Willie's face. This is a side of a seven year old that I have never seen or imagined before. All children have people that they look up to and compare themselves with. ...read more.


In this scene she shows this by pushing John down the stairs and issuing the challenge: 'Who's going to climb up there?' It also shows John's loss of power. She has to play a very intimidating character, and to further this effect she speaks loudly and positively. Jamie plays the role of John. He has to show that he is a threat to Peter and he does this by overtaking Peter in the power levels. His attitude is not as forceful as Peter's and as a result he gets respect. The fact that the other characters are not scared to argue back highlights this: Willie says, 'Don't keep on'. Although this is not an aggressive retort it shows a lack of fear that would not be the case with Peter. I have to play the role of Willie. To show that Willie isn't a very aggressive person I try to act scared of Peter. I do have quite a high energy level but I am not as powerful as Peter or John. I create this impression by hugging my arms as I run around giving a sense that I am quite soft. During this scene I keep low on the power levels and point at things enthusiastically. Camilla plays Raymond - a placid, sweet little boy with a stutter. In this scene she shows his lack of confidence and self-esteem by speaking in a very soft tone. The fact that she has so little to say also gives the audience further insight into Raymond's personality. ...read more.


The tension and climax is over when the characters realise that they have killed their friend and are sobbing 'Donald, Donald' all together. The props that are going to be used for this scene are a black sheet and orange, red and yellow ribbon. The ribbon will be tied to the wrists of Donald Duck and when the fire starts he will begin to loosely shake his wrists. This creates a ripple effect as though the ribbons are the start of the fire. Also, the ribbons may also serve a double purpose to remind the audience that they are children even though adults are playing them. As the fire builds up Donald moves his arms vigorously so that the ribbon is moving all around him creating the effect of an uncontrollable fire. The black sheet is held by the corners by Raymond and Willie on one side and Audrey and Angela on the other. At the climax, when the fire comes to its peak, they drop the sheet so it floats down and lands on Donald, This represents his death and it is significant that the colour black is used as it is closely associated with death. When fire is getting vigorous the orange and red lights flash on Donald to give the effect that he is in the middle of an uncontrollable disaster. When the black sheet lands on him there is a blackout to end the climax and to symbolize the end of Donald's life. The audience will be able to relate to what has happened and they will be left feeling upset and disappointed as they have seen children behave 'in new eyes'. ...read more.

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