Film Analysis Of Road To Perdition Clip (Lead Guns Down Father Figure) And Shot Breakdown Film Studies Essay

1677 words - 7 pages

Road to Perdition Clip Analysis
The costuming in this scene immediately fills in any uncertainty about its context: the suits they wear; the car choice; as well as the guns, obviously make the association with the time period, 1931, and the fact that they are gangsters. The scene is expressed through its exterior surroundings, landscapes, and the weather, expressing the emotional states of certain characters. Rooney’s character having the only dialogue throughout this full scene changes the whole sense of feeling during the biggest bloodbath in the film. This is probably due to it being shot in a romanticised way, due to its steady pace. Because “I’m glad it’s you,” is the only dialogue, it makes it even more meaningful. The emotive visual performance that Hanks and Newman present are unmistakeable. The distressed look that Sullivan exchanges with Rooney during the several seconds of them together, shows how disgusted Sullivan is with having to kill his father figure, and that he has to prepare himself to commit this particular murder. This singular moment on Rooney focuses our attention on the action of him being killed, and his resigned, sombre composure. His content with his demise prepare us for his death, and realise that Sullivan can be easily forgiven since he has done so. Also adding to these few shots is the editing choice of it being shot-reverse-shot. Their close relationship is evoked by these cuts and over the shoulder shots. In contrast to the effortless killing of Rooney’s men. It’s important to note that they emphasise isn’t on the victim, but on the murderer, and the impact that it had on him. This draws the scene to be focused more on humanity and emotion, than mass death and gore, which completely separates Road to Perdition to other gangster films. The use of close up shots draws the viewer into the emotional final moments that these characters share together. It takes you away from the previous brutality and inevitably makes us feel sympathetic towards the murderer. The softness of the non-diegetic music creates a sense of unreality – there seems to be very little diegetic sounds as its drowned by the non-diegetic sound. However, this can also be said to mirror the bleak situation as the heavy rain continuously falls in the darkness outside, and further softness the blow of the brutality of the series of killings.
Rooney’s men are not defined in comparison to Rooney and Sullivan, riding them of individual attention and even their voices when they die, denying them any sense of identity. They die collectively in a shot, and their individual shouts cannot be heard; they are not important and are merely part of Rooney’s mob. The dim low-key lighting and the impact of the heavy rain further emphasise the sheer irrelevance of these individuals as they are almost hidden by these elements. During this, the camera does a semi-circle of almost 180 degrees around the men being killed, with Rooney continually centre shot. As the men ...


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