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Communication In Relationships (English Essay) "Muriel's Wedding", "Looking For Alibrandi", "Chocolat"

2008 words - 8 pages

In order to have a healthy relationship, the parties involved must overcome the barriers of miscommunication, through honesty, empathy, respect and trust. As well as this, one needs to be able to identity themselves and know who they really are and what they want in order for the relationship to succeed. Without these elements, any relationship will suffer. The texts, "Muriel's Wedding", 'Manwatching', "Looking for Alibrandi" and "Chocolat" all explore the way relationships are affected by these elements.The main character, Muriel, in the film "Muriel's Wedding", lacks positive communication with the people in her life thereby having unhealthy relationships with them. Muriel's father, in particular, has an unhealthy relationship with his family. To others, he is a dedicated and great man who has helped many. On the other hand, he is always demeaning his family. In the scene, "The Rickshaw Room", Bill is surrounded by his family and colleagues and is the centre of attention. He is usually positioned in the centre of the frame with the others on the side. The hierarchy of the Heslop family is also emphasized when low angle shots are used on Bill but is then disoriented when high angle shots are used on Betty, showing the family's dysfunctional state. In a normal situation, the parents usually boast about their family's achievements in front of others. Instead, Bill continually criticizes his children and tells his guests what failures they are - "You're all a bunch of no-hopers, all of you". The camera pans across the whole family with their heads down, stopping at Bill, the head of the family, with a disgusted look on his face. This pan makes it seem as if the audience is judging them as well. Bill continues to pull up his past, by explaining how he was nearly elected into government and his slogan was "You can't stop progress". The irony of this is that he is the one stopping progress in his family by lowering their esteem and making them feel completely useless. Bill only expresses his negative feelings to his family and by this negative communication; he is creating an unhealthy relationship.Similarly, Muriel's mother, Betty, is unable to communicate with her husband or her children about what she is going through, thereby creating a barrier in her relationships. Betty is a very lonely woman and seems unattached to reality. She is a supporter of Bill but is never acknowledged. In "The Rickshaw Room", Betty is always seen in the background, on the side of the frame. Bill does not have any respect for her and this can clearly be seen when Deidre enters the scene, he completely ignores Betty. His respect for Deidre can be seen when he is apologetic to her for the simplest things. For example, he apologises to her when she arrives and doesn't have anywhere to sit, so he tells his children to 'shove over'. The audience also sees Betty from above, emphasizing her hopelessness and failure, whereas Bill and Deidre are seen from below, highlighting the...

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