October Sky Film Techniques

866 Words4 Pages
Joe Johnston uses many production features effectively in October Sky. In this essay I will consider how he uses colour, music, dialogue and camera work to emphasise the isolation and depressed atmosphere of 1957 Coalwood, the challenges that Homer Hickam, the protagonist, faces to reach his dream and the relationship that exists between father and son. The viewer is confronted with an abundance of cold blue-grey images and the wailing of a sole violin at the beginning of the movie. This introduces the idea of heavy industry and work as well as depression. As the camera moves out from the close up of the winch, to it beginning to move, the sound of the lift bringing weary miners to the surface at the end of their shift contributes to the sense…show more content…
Through dialogue and tone we understand that Homer is quite distant from his father. After his father saves the miner’s life Homer proudly says, “That’s my dad,” but as his dad starts to yell at the miner, he again says, “That’s my dad” but this time with an embarrassed tone. Through this technique we are able to see that while Homer wants to be proud of his dad because of his lack of compassion he feels uncomfortable and uneasy around him. This scene is also shown in a very dark and dull colour, which reflects how Homer feels coldness towards his father compared to the rest of his bright life. When John Hickam sees his son and enquires to how the football training went, close camera angles show us the disappointment that Homer experiences on his face and as the camera cuts back to John we see how he thinks his son is weak. But as Homer’s dad says that he can work in the mine Joe Johnston deliberately cuts back to Homer to show the viewer that Homer’s face is forlorn and has a very stern expression-he does not want to work in the mine. The father and son have very different views and it is what is making the relationship that exists are very strained one. Other camera angles in this scene consistently show John Hickam being higher and bigger than Homer. As the scene continues, this technique

More about October Sky Film Techniques

Open Document