Film anlysis : Elephant by Gus Van Sant released in 2003
it's his 2nd film others are Harvey Milk, Last Days successful with film critics
This film was inspired by the Columbine massacres committed on students in Columbine High school in Ohio by two pupils.
Gus Van Sant is an Independant film Director , this film won him an award at Cannes Film Festival
Is is considered to be an independant movie, financed by ind producers.
Why the title « elephant »: it comes from the expression « there is an elephant in the room ». meaning something is going on here , we have a problem on our hands and nobody cares.
We can divide this scene into two parts
The opening scene to the massacre ...view middle of the document...
One can remark upon the intention of the director to emphsize it when he picks upon even on background noises, every noise is picked up and amplified. The contrast between indoors and outdoors is noticeable straight away : indoors we have on non diegetic mood music in this case it is silence. The reference to death is clear.(place wheer there are no sounds such as cemeteries)
The camera follows John outside, the young teenager thus, and lets the gunmen enter the building wheer the shooting will taks place the audeince feels he is letting something happen, he feels helpless there is nothing he can do to prevent this tragedy from taking place.John tries to those around
The second part
From here on the director, lets things happen or creates an impression that there is no contrôle over what is happening.
The next shot takes place in the building : Usually, to establish a general location the director uses an extreme long shot ;this is not the case , the non desript building they enter could be anywhere
Camera movement follows them through the corridors. A dolly shot gives us a detailed tour of the building as we follow the killers. The deliberate partiel framing emphasizes the lack of direction. The audience never knows where he is going. The corridors are like mazes where there is no escape.
The editing is seamless : hardly any cuts this is due the steady cam.
.A lots of camera shots are taken from behind making the viewers feel we are spectators of what is happening. The camera follows the killers as they track down their schoolmates. It could be a videogame only more real.
Eye level angles puts...