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V For Vendetta

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Cam Burf

on 22 October 2012

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Transcript of V For Vendetta

‘V for Vendetta’, directed by James McTeigue, follows a masked vigilante known as “V” who uses terrorist methods to attempt to bring down London’s autocratic government.

McTeigue explores various themes, including Power of Ideas, Freedom, and Vengeance. He makes use of a variety of film techniques to communicate these themes and ideas, showing how one idea can make a difference on human society. POWER OF IDEAS Theme 1 The domino scene shows this well. Here ‘V’ sets up dominos in the shape of his emblem. This scene uses a montage of significant events that have happened in the past, the present, and in the future, relating to this idea. Symbolism depicting the domino effect and the ‘V’ shape is evident here. The first domino falls and topples all of the dominos. This symbolizes that one idea can reshape a nation and force an oppressive government into chaos. Finally, one domino remains standing, representing ‘V’’s final task of destroying parliament house. A scene showing ‘V’ as a powerful idea is his confrontation with Mr. Creedy. Creedy questions ‘V’ as to why he won’t die after being shot numerous times. ‘V’ replies “Beneath this mask there is more than flesh…beneath this mask there is an idea, Mr. Creedy…and ideas are bulletproof”, proceeding to kill Creedy. This quote brings us back to Guy Fawkes at the start of the film, showing how someone can be forgotten, but years on a simple idea can bring hope to mankind, which is what ‘V’ intends to do. The sounds of knives slicing through the air, as bullets rush past the camera, emphasize this idea and show ‘V’ as the personification of an idea. FREEDOM Theme 2 Power of Ideas is a significant theme, personified by the character ‘V’ as he uses a Guy Fawkes mask and his obscurity. It highlights that it only takes one significant idea to ignite a chain reaction to change a country. Freedom is another major theme conveyed throughout the film. The government in the film has made people believe that freedom equals chaos, which is what ‘V’ is intending to bring to the nation. An important scene which discusses Freedom is ‘V’’s speech to the nation, exposing the lies created by Norsefire and urging the people to fight against their oppressive government. Here, McTeigue uses the juxtapositioning between ‘V’’s message and that of the government. Viewers can see the contrast between ‘V’ and the Norsefire slogan – highlighting his speech for freedom. ‘V’’s speech is shown through low angle camera shots, among other shots, including a nursing home, a bar, and a lounge room, to highlight the pervasiveness of ‘V’’s idea; to stand up for their freedom. This notion of freedom contrasts with the government slogan “Strength through Unity, Unity through Faith” – a call for conformity. ‘V’ is attempting to take down London’s oppressive government, portrayed when he slashes his symbol into the government slogan poster. Showing ‘V’’s intentions to bring down the government through undermining their message of conformity, bringing anarchy to the people of London. Also, ‘V’’s symbol is the anarchy symbol upside down. VENGEANCE Theme 3: Vengeance is the most significant theme throughout the film, shown through ‘V’'s fight for revenge for what was done to him and those who attempted to stand up against the government. Dialogue is used here to communicate the theme of vengeance, when ‘V’ states “The only verdict is vengeance; a vendetta, held as a votive, not in vain, for the value and veracity of such shall one day vindicate the vigilant and the virtuous”. Saying that vengeance is the only way to bring down Sutler and free the people. The minimal use of lighting on ‘V’’s face, also demonstrates ‘V’’s power and the mood of darkness and mystery. ‘V’’s desire for vengeance is also conveyed using the Scarlet Carson rose, which he leaves with his victims. This extinct breed of rose appears frequently throughout the film to portray the idea of revenge and ‘V’’s need for retribution against the government. The use of this rose is symbolic, and is used to send a message that vengeance and freedom is possible. This rose is believed to be extinct, which portrays ‘V’’s ambition against this oppressive government. Each time the rose is shown in extreme close-up, giving the impression of how powerful ‘V’’s desire for vengeance is. ‘V For Vendetta’ uses many film techniques to convey themes. The power of ideas shows that it takes one idea to change human society. Freedom is explored to send a message that everyone should be able to be free and stand against their totalitarian government. Finally, Vengeance is portrayed to show why ‘V’ is carrying out revenge on London’s government. ‘V For Vendetta’ uses a variety of themes and techniques to show that one man can make an impact on human society, and that “ideas are bulletproof”. By Cam Burfield, 11AKL
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