20 Oct 2010

The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)

Film uncovers a plot of alien invasion. The story is about the alien, Klaatu, who came to earth with a message. The figure of Klaatu comes as a messiah, as Jesus Christ. Discussion on the film concludes that Klaatu is a Christ figure, but his big, destructive robot friend is decidedly Old Testament” (Koler, 1999)

As simple as it sounds he warns earth people to live in peace otherwise he would have to eliminate the whole planet as earth’s developed martial means (use of atomic energies) became a threat to other (“neighbor”) civilizations in space.

The Context of the Film.

Jamie Gillies refers that  „this film is truly the first anti-atomic movie and it is surprisingly anti-American in its message“ .

The film was created 1951, relatively soon after the final stages of Second World War when United states dropped 2 atomic bombs “Little boy” and “Fat Man”   on  Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Within the few months of the bombings, the acute effects killed around 230 000.  About half of the  people died on the explosion days, from flash,  flame burns and from falling debris. Another half during the following few months, from the effect of burns, radiation sickness or other injuries.

Therefore the film, one might imagine, at that time’s context wasn’t simply perceived as a peace of entertainment, yet the words it speaks are equally relevant to current day: “the future of your planet is at stake”.

Further goes some analysis of film’s aspects relevant to our Narrative unit. 
The Use of Sound
Particularly noticeable was the use of eerie soundtrack. These metallic, abstract sounds, in my opinion really succeed to set up the bizarre, confusing and ( if set up with appropriate surroundings) the   uncanny feel of the scenes/film. The more indefinable the sound is the better it does its job.

The Depiction of military
I took a note of how the military was portrayed in the film. Stereotypically macho. Action goes before notion. ( in the very first scenes soldier shoots the alien when he intends to hand over a gift to state’s president)

 Such idea of army role was represented by showing the tanks and military cars rushing here and there, lots of army men, a suitably frowned and uniformed stubborn general. 
Just lots of action, movement, rushing and lots of relevant elements (tanks/guns/army men/ bombing sounds) to emphasize blunt force.

To generally sum up, the film doesn’t look dated almost at all, and personally I think it’s because of the great cinematic elements incorporated in the film , like lighting (! stunning effects, which made  beautiful pictures),  camera moves, editing, special effects  ect. The film really  is now in my list of favorites .


No comments:

Post a Comment