Module C: The Queen

928 Words4 Pages
Composers rely on memory to persuade responders to view history in a particular light. To what extent do you agree with this statement? Our perception of history is dependent upon a combination of events, personalities and situations. In this sense, it can be seen as a misleading impression of reality when the truth becomes distorted by our memories. This notion is evident in Stephen Frears’ film “The Queen”, the documentary “Pompeii: the Last Day” by Peter Nicholson and the novel “Mao’s Last Dancer” by Li Cunxin as all three composers rely on memory to represent a fusion of fact and fiction which ultimately influences our memory to view history in a particular light. In the film “The Queen” the subjectivity of history can be blatantly seen through the objective use of archival footage. This is firmly evident in the car crash montage scene where Frears takes the opportunity to cleverly frame his own version of Princess Diana’s “catastrophic” death towards the beginning of the film in order to position the audience to gain a greater understanding of the Queen’s moment of crisis. The use of high modality, in Mrs. Blair’s carefully chosen dialogue leading up to the montage scene, as she says, “... Diana. Whatever it is it’s always got something to do with Diana”, conveys Stephen Frears’ certainty of the ongoing private affairs in the royal family. The impeccable transition from documentary to film juxtaposes Diana’s life full of endless opportunities, symbolised by her wading in the sea in comparison to the darkness that encompasses her life which Frears evokes in his night car crash scene, permitting the audience to connect the two frames and concoct their own perspective of his version of the event. Similarly, Stephen Frears attempts to create empathy for the Queen in his film by contrasting two consecutive scenes which represent both her iron steel facade
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