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Belonging Essay

1656 words - 7 pages

Strictly Ballroom EssayMelissa LeungQuestion: What does the composer of your text reveal about the concept of belonging? You should answer on either 'Romulus, My Father' or 'Strictly Ballroom' depending on which you have studied. How does he represent his idea? In your answer you may consider literary techniques such as narrative voice, imagery, contrast, hyperbole, word choice, use of setting, description ('Romulus, My Father') or filmic techniques, music, iconography, costuming, dialogue, contrasts, hyperbole ('Strictly Ballroom').Certain texts raise certain perspectives about belonging, whether it is belonging to particular groups through conformity to rules, or belong to a place where you find inspiration to express your own sense of individuality. The film 'Strictly Ballroom', directed by Baz Luhrmann successfully highlights the true sense of belonging through the use of music, dialogue, lighting and symbolism.Belonging has been defined as 'a relationship or affinity with something or someone.' Belonging means to be usually or rightly placed, to have the proper social qualification. Most people have a feeling of connection with particular things, people, places, ideas or beliefs. But some people choose to not belong, that leads to being alienated or excluded from a group.In particular groups or sub groups within society, there are rules that are other written or simply know by members of the group. Usually, it is accepted that to be a member of these particular groups, you will adhere to the rule, in other words, you will conform. You must do this in order to being. Individuals who challenge these rules and fail to conform are generally dealt with in two ways - They are in danger of becoming alienated from the group or the group might accept the changes and broaden their rules.The purpose of Baz Luhrmann's film 'Strictly Ballroom' is to explore the ways individuals find their own way of expressing themselves so that they can find their own identity. There is a strong sense that the film's belonging to Australians. The plot makes use of well-known culture and narrative structures to give the audience a sense of place and belonging in the story. The film plays with stereotypes, Australian images and landscapes, mixes genres and fairy-tale story.At the opening scenes of Strictly Ballroom highlights a fantasy world, the red curtain and the music "Blue Danube" and the back-lit silhouettes reflect the ballroom dancing world. It is a world the audience is set up to admire. Then shattered by the reality - 'C'mon number 100.'The crosscutting to the interviews at the beginning of the film surprises the audience, sending up the content of the interview and the exaggerated seriousness of the characters' approach to ballroom dancing. The interviews describe the events of the recent Southern District Waratah Championships, where Scott Hastings dared to express his individuality through 'non-federation' dance steps. The over-the-top comments of Shirley...

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