Reconstruction Essay

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The film Ali: Fear Eats the Soul directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder tells a love story between a young Moroccan worker Ali and a 60-year-old widow cleaning woman Emmi. In the film, the most heartbreaking sequence for me happens when Ali and Emmi sit alone in the center of an outside diner: Ali and Emmi sit across from each other, their hands reach together on the table, people stare at them judgmentally because of their unusual relationship, and then Emmi breaks down for the first time. In this sequence, the filmmakers did such as an excellent job in both imaginative identification and empathic identification. At the beginning of this sequence, the setting of them sitting alone in the center of an outside diner reflects the characters’ psychological stage -- no one gives them blessings, everyone they know views them as a disgrace, they are isolated by the society’s standard of marriage. By placing them alone in the center of a giant space, the filmmakers indicate both their physical and psychological stages: they are living on isolation by themselves. At the same time, the use of music adds another layer of isolation to this sequence. The filmmakers chose to use the natural sound from the characters’ surroundings instead of any additional background music. By magnifying the natural sounds, the filmmakers emphasize on the characters’ surroundings. Since people tend to pay more attention to their surroundings when they are alone, the use of natural sounds creates a more lonely and isolated feeling in the film, in addition to the cinematic setting. By combining the use of music and the setting together, the filmmakers allow the audience to imagine themselves to be the characters they identify with. The audience first imagines themselves as the characters by recalling similar experiences in their real lives. For most people, at one time or another, must have the

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