Billy Elliot

9 September 2016

Billy •Towering structure of infrastructure juxtaposed with swan lake music —- struggle getting from working class to professional dancer •Imagination – images of mother, memories •Melancholy scene •Childhood innocence – Debby and Billy •Scene of police shields running towards camera – “London Calling” by Clash, sympathises with miners, violence, blood, totalitarian, brother arrested •Family values Turning point scene – all family find out about royal ballet school – “I don’t want to be a child, I want to be a ballet dancer” •All family members looking up to Billy in close up shots, •Cuts from scenes between fighting between brother and Mrs Wilkinson (class tension) to Billy dancing (releases emotions) •Enclosed spaces – setting = society closing in on him •Walls on either side, blue sky above, dancing through street = freedom •Barrier = forces against him (society) •Dad axing piano = uses wood in fire •Dramatic irony – Michael admits he’s gay, Billy says he’s not gay •Father walks into scene with Billy and Michael Father realises how talented Billy is •Father’s ultimate sacrifice to son – joins scabs (to raise money for Billy’s ballet) see internal conflict for Billy’s dad ? embarrassed, immasculinated •Father selling mothers jewellery, keeps spirit of wife in Billy’s dream •Vast difference of setting – crowded, bleak, grey mining town…. London greenness, vast building, bird’s eye view • “isn’t there a giant cathedral in that town? ” shows difference in class and contrast •Scrutiny of panel ? close ups of Billy’s face •Billy brought up in violent household ?

Billy is not a violent person (he is caring) the enormous cultural conflict class differentiation —- boy represents the system •Judge comments and raises doubts about fathers commitments ? his sacrifices are huge •Billy’s victory is not a win for the miners ? the union caved into the strike vs. Billy’s news •Juxtaposition of grey factories and graveyard ? lives and struggles •Father/son relationship closer ? more understanding , the underlying love is strong •The little girl is symbolic of the continuity of the mining life ? plight of young kids •Billy defined by the relationships and people who are sad about him leaving •Bus ? mage of conflict and violence and now image of family separation

Billy Elliot Essay Example

•Back of bus window ? being separated from family, billy hands up on window physically separation •Close up shot of the miners caged in the shaft – billy escaped but everyone else’s life goes on, symbolic entrapment, society limits their opportunities •Billy’s father amazed by huge buildings, train stations etc. •Skips to when Billy is older, Swan Lake performance •Father, brother and best friend there •Educated, career, professional •Swan Lake = escape from working class (symbolic) •Michael shows Billy’s tolerance •STRONG ANTI-THATCHERISM POLTICAL STATEMENTS – LIBERAL DEMOCRACY (CAPITALISM VS BILLY ELLIOT) HARSH CULTURAL CONSTRAINTS:

•HIDING BALLET SHOES •LYING TO FATHER •BOXING CLASS BUT ACTUALLY AT BALLET •PIANO GUY •VIOLENCE OF JACKIE AND TONY Characterisation: Tony •Strong family values towards father and brother •Feels pressure of cultural expectations however overcomes them •Violent and hasty •Rebel with a cause •Repressed working class ? family life, job, •Transformation character •Loyal to his family and to his class •Aggression ? culturally imposed •Capacity for love Mrs Wilkinson •Mentor/element of maternal figure •Loyal •Determined Unfulfilled professionally and love •Supportive •Imagery: light in the shadows (the halo effect) Michael •Shows Billy’s tolerance – Billy is accepting, non-judgemental and supportive •Loyal friend •Repressed by his sexuality •Shows that you don’t have to be gay to be interested in ballet The text constructs images of family that support the idea of the importance of the family unit. FAMILY Billy Strong relationship with grandma

-Opening scene in meadow -takes grandmother to grave -poignant hugging scene when Billy says goodbye Scenes Support Tony-Gives up dance audition when Tony gets arrestedSymbolism Love for father-On wooden fence ? aughing and affectionate -Jackie holding Billy when he’s leaving -Older Billy about to go on for his performance ? told “your family is here”Symbolism Scenes Memory of mother-Piano is symbolic of mother memory -Photos in frames of mother on piano -Billy’s hallucinations in the kitchen of memories -Visits his mother’s grave and cleans itSymbolism Still images Jackie Towards Billy -Selling wife’s jewellery for cash -Going back to being a scab to raise money -Closing images of Jackie watching Billy at performance -Images of affection -Transverses to cultural norms -Violent bus scene symbolises what he’s sacrificed for Billy

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