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Macro Elements Of A Scene : Star Wars Episode 3

1441 words - 6 pages

Narrative is the structure of which a films story is told. Most films follow a five stage set up which enables us to consider how the story will unfold by breaking it up. The five stages are Exposition, Development, Complication, Climax and Resolution. This is a sensible way of telling a story, as it becomes simpler for the viewer to understand. Also the audience expects certain things from the different stages of the narrative.

Genre means the category a film falls under. This provides the audience with a way to differentiate films from other types. Conventions are the things we come to expect in certain genres, e.g. Western’s have cowboys and Indians, horrors have scary places etc.
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The audience’s main expectation for a climax is dramatic tension. This is delivered in this sequence between the films main Protagonist (Obi-Wan Kenobi) and the Antagonist (Anakin Skywalker). When Obi-wan first appears in the sequence, he is wearing white and is surrounded by light. This clarifies his stature as a protagonist as this is a common convention for a hero. Anakin is dressed in black and half of his face is hidden in shadow, this is the normal convention for a villain. Also his face and eyes have changed when he becomes a villain, making him appear less human-like and establishing him as evil.

As in most action films, the protagonist and antagonist are complete opposites, which is a narrative technique to help the audience identify who is good and evil. This is used a lot in Star Wars so the audience knows which side is good, the Jedi’s are the light side and the Sith’s the dark side. The producer will expect the audience to know that light symbolises purity and dark symbolises fear. The sequence has a parallel narrative, as lightsaber duel between Yoda and The Emperor runs alongside it. Yoda is the main Jedi and stands for everything that is good; this is evident in his light shade of clothing compared to the emperor’s dark hooded attire. The emperor displays one of the most common conventions for a villain, anger. The fights that run along side each other establish an ultimate fight between good and evil. It also creates double the anxiety for the audience as if the good side lose, evil will take over.
The two fight scenes are edited with straight cuts; this is so the pace of the film remains fast, typical of an action genre. The Anakin vs. Obi-Wan Fight sequence is set on the lava filled planet of Mustaphar. This comes under conventions of fantasy and science fiction, as it is a world unlike anything we know. The violent state of the planet also adds to the dramatic tension in the scene.
Anakin has his back turned towards Obi-Wan during the pairs dialogue, this symbolises that he has turned against him and everything he used to stand for. This narrative technique establishes that he has now moved over to the dark side.
The sequence starts with the arrival of Padmè, who is secretly married to, and carrying the unborn child of Anakin. Anakin has turned into a bad guy in an attempt to save his loved one from dying in childbirth, which he foresaw in a dream. This is similar to a romantic drama genre, although unlike typical films of that genre it doesn’t have a happy ending. The viewer is aware that the romantic conventions have been subverted. At the end of the film, Padmè does die in childbirth due to injuries sustained from Anakin strangling her. This is reminiscent of a classic Greek tragedy.

The film accommodates both viewers who have seen the previous Star Wars films and those who haven’t. The dialogue between characters makes the viewer believe that a happy ending is possible, although audience’s of...

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