Scene Setting: Battleship Potemkin, Broke Back Mountain

Movies have become an inseparable part of human culture, and the themes illustrated are extremely numerous. Morality plays an important role in the portrayal of actors and ideas as it stays central to human culture and everything that takes place. It is important to keep in mind that the action of movies is greatly connected to the special effects and sounds, more particularly the setting. Movies such as Broke Back Mountain and Battleship Potemkin are great examples of movies where the themes are aided by settings, actors, sounds, light and music, thus adding to the effectiveness and recognition of the moral themes.

 In Broke Back Mountain, mise-en-scene greatly adds to the morality and the theme of the movie. The scene where Ennis Del Mar and Jack Twist set camp is filled with connections between the scenery and the greater themes of freedom and separation from the usual social life. The first part of the scene shows a mountain that is covered with trees. The scenery is magnificent and encompasses a vast amount of space. This represents how big the world is and that people can find a place where they desire to be. It is everyone’s right to decide what they want to do with their life, and the natural scenery reminds the viewers that they are the master of their wishes and dreams.

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The present world has changed a lot, but even today there are setbacks and discrimination against certain groups of people. In particular, people of sexual orientation, which is not widely accepted, still have problems with the social rules and norms. Society came a long way from the way differential sexual preferences were treated decades ago. People have fought for their rights and established themselves as equal in rights and freedoms. The movie itself and the scenery of nature and its enormous size represent the freedom that people can now have. The two characters are alone in the wilderness, sitting by the fire and are not being judged by the surrounding environment.

There are many minority groups who have been fighting for the civil and humane treatment, irrespective of their ethnicity, race, gender and sexual orientation. The fight for rights and freedoms of people who prefer same sex relationships has been significant in America. Freedom of the scene and the careless behavior of two guys drinking represent the inner wishes and desires of every person. The conversation between the men is very open and trusting which shows that there are still people who are willing to share. As such, the characters complement the scenery of the wilderness and the beauty of nature.

In the scene, the message is that everyone deserves a fair treatment, free of unreasonable and immoral judgment and bigotry. People of other sexual orientation are no different from others, and here, nature does not care what people want or need, it is indifferent, but it is not a negative thing as it is welcoming people to be who they are inside. The rights and freedoms of all people who are not like the others have been greatly oppressed for a long time, but there were moments where they could be alone and share their feelings. Everything in the scene is a clear demonstration that the separation from society and simply being out in the wild are positive things. People are free to decide what they want to do, and no one will judge them, especially nature.

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The whole movie and many scenes greatly tie into the major theme that people want to be free and live their life without unfair judgment. Nature will not discriminate against anyone because people are a part of its own essence.  

In the movie Battleship Potemkin montage plays a significant role to create the atmosphere of the scene. Usually, montage is used to collect several images, themes and characters into one long scene, so that viewers are able to connect with the movie and feel whatever its characters are experiencing. The quick change from one character previously viewed to the other, then to the general setting and back to the original one, shows how the scenes are connected. The first moments of the scene of “Odessa Steps” shows people who are happy, and the camera goes from one person to another. Several particular people are seen a few times, such as the woman with an umbrella, the woman who brings her veil up to smile and the children who are waiving. Suddenly, when the soldiers come out, montage creates a sense of chaos and it can be seen in characters, scenes and the setting itself.

Another important part of montage centers on the life itself, how quickly it can end, as well as social norms and divisions which existed at the historical time the movie was set, but today, also.

For a long time, there has been a separation between oppressive governments and simple folk, both in life and social environment. The scene shows that the division is very clear and it plays a differential role in society and communication which is needed to attain certain results. The marching and shooting soldiers seem unstoppable while people are running and falling. The switch between these two images creates a very distinct feeling of the classes and individuals being different. Montage makes it apparent that people were treated as mere disposable entities by governments and soldiers, and no one has really wondered about moral laws and proper human treatment.

In the movie, and specifically the scene on the steps, the history of protests against the government`s consideration of people as worthless is shown, and it goes back into the past. The courage and determination that people exhibited after unacceptable violence deserves great respect and shows how many people are displeased with the matter of affairs. The possibility of such drastic actions to take place and soldiers killing their fellow citizens means that there will be no resolution without some victims and montage of violent images shows this perfectly. A woman with a child who has been shot is shown several times, switching back to the soldiers coming down the steps.

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The filmmaker was able to transport the harsh reality of the time and the dirt of society onto the screen. The contrast is made by several actors, and they able to show the division of the world into two parts.

The evil and immorality that have always existed in the world are shown to be very hard on people. The absence of social support and the fact that people could not protest to show how hard it was for them emotionally and physically describe the environment of the norms that were present at a particular time.

Montage created by Sergei Eisenstein has greatly reproduced the real world by the use of several pictures that are the same in nature. The switch has created an atmosphere of pain and reality as it reiterates the importance of repetition and montage. It is clear that such a technique is very effective, and as Eisenstein thought, speaks greatly to people in a form of language through images, since it is more connected to movies and people than paintings.

As it has been shown, the “true art” of movies relates more to the realist approach. People want a specific representation of events that closely repeat and transfer the knowledge to viewers. In the Broke Back Mountain the reality of the scenes of nature creates a connection of people to freedom. People are not bound by the limits of cities or walls. In the movie Battleship Potemkin, the horror of people running away from the shooting soldiers is also made out to be very realistic and truthful which was the original plan.

Timing plays an important role in the movie Broke Back Mountain and adds to the reality because of the constant change in the pace of the scenes. The scenes of nature are shown for longer periods of time to allow the viewers to feel the reality of the surrounding environment. The moments are made to be rather safe from everything the big world has to offer, as well as from time and people; the setting is relaxing and reassuring. When scenes are longer, it allows viewers to get involved in the story. An example of this would be when the two men are sitting by the fire and bonding with their life stories. This makes the experience of the viewer more personal and dramatic. The movie is full of regular and quite possible scenes of nature, with no fiction involved. In a way, it adds to the dramatic and depressing scenes. Wilderness is as real as it gets, so people can almost place themselves in the setting the main characters are in.

Battleship Potemkin is a historical film that has been said to be one of the best historical representations, even though it is a film and not a documentary. In the movie, it is shown how the social change occurred; the fight between two opposing sides is described to be extremely real. People are running and screaming is very natural and even though there are no words or screams, the viewer can feel and hear the emotion that people are going through. The view of people running captures the theme of the entire story. The scene describes the mood of desperation and hopelessness through the imagery. Objects and concepts that are usually thought to be lifeless and indifferent are made to come to life and make people suffer.  Even the cruel nature of the stairs speaks to the viewers, and becomes the place where lives are changed and taken.

 At the same time, there seems to be the despair of reality as people are worried about their safety, and it is possible to feel and understand why they are being so scared. The scene is filled with commotion, crowds and people who “speak” a different language from the cruel soldiers, adding to the mood of alienation and indifference. The view of people running and falling displays the darkness and loneliness of the setting. Overall, the grand scenery minimizes the significance of everything, engulfing people into one giant pool of pain and governmental indifference. The film makes the characters look insignificant to the greater forces of the ruling by contrasting the physical fullness of scenes with loneliness that the characters display when they fall down and are left lying on the stairs.

Both movies make great use of the setting, scenery and editing. The viewers must be able to recognize parts of their own life from the movie, so that the effect of reality becomes natural and unforced. This is exactly what can be seen in the movies, and the great play of characters adds to the general atmosphere of the scene. Overall, a process of editing and compiling scenes requires understanding of the world and what is demanded by people.

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