V for Vendetta
“People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people”. The film “V for Vendetta” directed by James McTeigue holds an idea of rebellion and freedom within society which is presented throughout the full movie. V is the initial character who influences the revolution. It tells the story of a vigilante who is bringing down those who have pledged allegiance to the government that have committed many atrocities that have put Britain in the state they are in. Whilst Evey Hammond learns about V’s past and decides she’s willing to help him take down the government. There are multiple cinematography techniques I will use to analyse in both the Domino scene and the Final Fight scene. I will use colour, cut, music, montage and juxtaposition in the Domino’s scene. The cinematography techniques I will use to help me analyse the final fight scene is colour, cut, dialogue and a variety of camera shots. Overall the cinematography techniques work together to help me all viewers understand the directors intention of emphasising rebellion and freedom within society.
The Dominos scene is an intense significant moment in this film because as an audience we were able to see the impact and chaos that V’s actions were having on society. There was a revolution beginning. The director’s intention of emphasising rebellion and freedom within society is strongly embedded throughout this scene. The director has positioned us as viewers to see that there is always a purpose behind bold actions made from individuals in society and that the rebellion on one can influence millions. The desire for power and freedom that V holds overpowers the countries morals and respect for the government. He has helped educate us on the fact that ideas are bulletproof and if you want to make a change you can. Juxtaposition is used effectively within this scene to take multiple events/incidents related to V to come together to form a link between the falling of the dominos and the chaos rising in the country. The scene begins by Every spotting a teen spray painting over one of the governments signs “Through unity, unity through faith” in the background was a violin instrumental that was building in intensity. This was the first sign of chaos within the country. The next piece of the montage reveals the chair people individually in separate frames with a dark black background and a low light spotlighting their faces, it seems as if they are being interrogated by their leader. The colour black which is shown in the clothes the chair people wear and the dark background behind them represents an association with power, strength, authority, evil and fear. These are all the traits that the men hold, however as the montage continues we see cuts between scenes and the chaos increasing. V also wears full black, however black also symbolises death, rebellion and power which V currently holds as the revolution takes place. We see the population start receiving the masks that V wears; as viewers we know the people are isolated from normality due to the government’s laws but now they have been given a chance to stand up and take action, alongside V. This relates in a way to the real world in how the society in London has changed due to the close surveillance the government has towards them. It is known that in the UK that there electronic surveillance systems increased hugely after world war 2 and have been increasing ever since. There is supposedly 500,000 cameras in London and 4, 200, 000 in the whole of the UK. The impacts this has on society is huge, it isolates the people from normality along with invading their privacy. I believe this is dangerous for both societies in the film, its sending us a message that this could occur in real life because the invasion of privacy from the government provokes individuals and eventually large amounts of people to act out due to the control and the lack of freedom they have. The director has enabled us to understand the acts of rebellion within a controlled environment, due to the movie also being set in Britain it’s almost as if he is sending a message across worldwide that this is a possibility if the world keeps going on as it is. As the scene continues the music returns, the violin instrumental building once again to leave the viewer feeling as if something ironic is about to take place. Cutting between multiple scenes we see the chaos and pain the society is facing as the revolution is taking place. “it was like a perfect pattern laid out in front of me, and i realised that we are all part of it” this quotation taken from the montage is spoken over the top of shot of V standing in a dark room with thousands of dominos placed upright ready to be knocked over, showing the juxtaposition link between the narration of the chairs people and V and the dominos. He then quotes “with all this chaos someone will do something stupid”. As a police officer shoots a teen girl wearing a V mask. The director has put this prediction in the montage to show us the implications of a revolution. After a intense series of events within the montage V is seen flicking all the dominos over, this shows us viewers the power, authority, control and rebellion V holds. Overall the director has shown us the importance of freedom and without it, it provokes individuals and large amounts of the population to act out and rebel. By using multiple cinematography techniques such as colour, music, juxtaposition and montage in this scene creates a link together to show us as viewers the directors intention of rebellion and freedom and to visually show us the impacts of societies control and the consequences it has on the population.
The Final Fight scene is a significant piece within the film. The directors intention of rebellion and freedom were imposed during this scene, as viewers we could see the cinematography techniques colour, cut, dialogue and a variety of camera shots work together to reinforce the directors intention within the film and specifically this scene. That the impacts of a government full of control affect the population in an intense dangerous way, as well as showing us the purpose of rebellion and freedom. The scene starts with a wide shot of the protagonist V in a dark black alleyway with the police officers and V all wearing black. Black is the absence of a colour, it symbolises death, power and strength. The director has incorporated this colour to a huge extent during this scene to show us the impacts of a colour and how it can affect the way we view the scene. Along with the ideas of rebellion and freedom subconsciously playing in the back of our minds. By the scene starting distant and cutting between the police men and V we can see the police men striving to overpower V as he stands alone preparing for the upcoming fight. Whilst the camera cuts to a close up of one of the soldiers, his face reads confidence as he feels as if they will win the fight as he looks to his comrades for certainty. We see a far shot of all the soldiers lined up against V, as the camera cuts between the officers and V they all shoot as his body shakes with the impact of the shots. After the shots have been fired a close up shot of V follows as he raises his head and quotes “my turn”. As the men go into battle we see blood shed and knives flying, whilst the camera is cutting between shots of establishing shots, overhead, mid shots, and close-ups. The only other colour seen throughout this scene was red, from the blood shed during the fight. Red represents death, passion, and danger. The director has effectively linked the colours black and red together to show us the violence that is occurring within the scene. It has helped assure us of the extreme measures V has gone to for the freedom the country wants. The men knew deep down that V could win the fight although they stayed and fought for what they believed in, knowing there could be a terrible outcome. This shows us as an audience how the government has been so brainwashed by their leaders that they have given up their lives for a dream that is coming to an end. A mid shot of Mr. Creedy appears as he stumbles backwards cutting between him and V as Mr. Creedy has his gun pointed at V shooting and yelling “die, die, why won’t you die” from Mr. Creedy’s perspective we see down the barrel of the gun and Vs face at the bottom. V quotes ” Beneath this mask there is more than flesh, Beneath this mask there is an idea, Mr. Creedy, and ideas are bulletproof”. The significance of this quote intertwines all of the cinematography techniques together to reveal the ultimate purpose of the scene. Which was to show us viewers the importance of freedom in society and the emphasis of rebellion used to get what was needed. All these ideas run through our minds as we then see Mr. Creedy drop to the ground from the hands of V.
James McTeigue’s intention in the film “V for Vendetta” revealed a message for us viewers that a government with full control impacts the population in a negative way and can provoke individuals to rebel and fight for there freedom. In result of this it can be dangerous for the country where this is taking place. This is developed by the cinematography techniques used in the Domino scene and the Final Fight scene, colour, cut, music, montage, juxtaposition, dialogue, and a variety of camera shots. I am impressed by the way McTeigue has intertwined all the cinematography techniques within both scenes to help us see the directors intention of emphasising freedom and rebellion and that the control of a government can affect a population in a significant way which can result in ultimate chaos. If one person has an idea and sticks with it, it’s all it takes for a revolution. “We are told to remember the idea, not the man, because a man can fail. He can be caught, he can be killed and forgotten, but 400 years later, an idea can still change the world”. Overall the two scenes were able to highlight the directors intention by using all of the cinematography techniques together to get the director’s purpose of emphasising rebellion and freedom to us as viewers.