Describe at least one important event in the text. Explain how this event had a positive OR negative effect. (Farriers decision)(positive)
‘Dunkirk’ is a movie directed by Christopher Nolan, which is based on a true event.‘Dunkirk’ is set on Dunkirk beach in France during World War 2, around the 1940’s, where they are trying to rescue the British soldiers from the enemies.This film uses a lot of different lighting and non-diegetic sounds which creates tension and keeps the viewer on the edge of their seat.
‘Dunkirk’ takes place over 1 week and has three settings: the air, the land and the sea. Farriers decision is an important decision in the film and has a positive effect because he saved many other soldiers.
The film ‘Dunkirk’ was filmed where the real evacuation happened, it was called ‘Operation Dynamo’. The evacuation happened because the French could not defend their land so the British stepped in to help as they were allies but failed and ended up on Dunkirk beach where they had ships coming to get the British.
Christopher Nolan uses the sound of a ticking watch to create stress and an uneasy feeling in the audience. An example of this is when one of the spitfire pilots (Farrier) is looking at his broken fuel gauge and is having to make a choice whether he should save himself or defend the soldiers from the enemy. The ticking that is heard is a non-diegetic sound that Christopher uses is heard in the background of ‘Dunkirk’, it creates tension without the audience knowing. Non-diegetic sound is sound that is only heard by the audience. The ticking symbolizes that time is running out for all the soldiers to get off the beach and escape the Germans as they are getting closer and closer. The ticking can be heard from the very beginning of the film when Tommy (A British soldier) is running through a town and is being shot at, to when Farrier runs out of fuel flying above Dunkirk beach. This is a constant reminder that all the characters don’t have a lot of time.’Dunkirk’ has one very obvious theme which is time, the ticking is a big symbol of this. The ticking that Christopher Nolan uses makes the audience worry about the characters and their decisions, never allowing the audience to feel calm because the characters are always in situations where one wrong decision can result in not only just their death but everyone around them.
Christopher Nolan uses Shepard tone by Hans Zimmer to create anxiety and tension in the audience. An example of this is when Collins (other spitfire pilot) ditches and crash lands in the water and the hatch is stuck, the plane is filling up with water or when Farrier has to make his decision. The Shepard tone is a non-diegetic sound that Christopher Nolan uses in the background of ‘Dunkirk’ to never allow the audience to settle. The Shepard tone, made by Hans Zimmer, is made up of three tones, the highest one fading out, the middle one staying the same and the lowest one fading in. When Collins was unable to open the hatch by himself, the Shepard tone got louder causing the audience to worry and panic about if he would be able to get out or not.In ‘Dunkirk’ Shepard tone basically symbolizes that the characters are unsafe and in danger, Shepard tone makes the audience stress about what will happen to the characters because it can change very quickly.
Christopher Nolan uses close ups of Farriers face when he is making a decision to show how hard it was to choose. Farrier has to make a big decision to save himself and fly home or to protect ships carrying British soldier, we get a close up of Farriers face, you can see it just by his eyes that he is very undecided on what to choose, he looks in his mirror a few times before making the decision to defend the British ships, we can see the internal conflict. This scene links to the theme of self sacrifice because Farrier knows he doesn’t have enough fuel to do both, he also doesn’t know exactly how much fuel he has because he broke it earlier on. He could have chosen to keep flying home but he chose to turn around and fight the enemy. At the end of the film we see Farrier surrounded by the enemy but never find out what happens to him leaving the audience worried and wondering about him.In ‘Dunkirk’ Christopher Nolan uses close ups to show the importance and tension in the scene.
Christopher Nolan uses close up of Farriers fuel gauge to make the audience worry. After Farriers fuel gauge was broken earlier on in the film in a dogfight, when he is deciding to save himself or the soldiers we are shown close ups of the gauge.The broken fuel gauge symbolizes that time is running out or the time that the characters have left is unknown because they are constantly in danger. Before Collins ditched, the two of them constantly talked and reminded each other to keep an eye on their fuel and to make sure that they had enough to get back home.Christopher Nolan uses close ups of Farriers fuel gauge in the film to constantly remind the audience that the time the characters have is very little and could run out at anytime.
In conclusion Christopher Nolan uses ticking of watch, Shepard tone, close ups of Farriers face and close ups of Farriers fuel gauge to keep the audience wondering and worrying about what will happen next. The close ups show that it is important to the scene or overall film and the ticking of the watch and Shepard tone symbolize that time is running out or that the time the characters have isn’t much.