25 September 2011


Amelie is a comical French romance that will keep you laughing and captivated the whole time through. The Movies main character Amelie is a quirky yet funny and cute individual who had a peculiar childhood growing up which helped to shape her character as an adult. Growing up, Amelie did not have the most loving family, her father never showed her love through affection such has hugging or kissing her, and her mother died when Amelie was young. Amelie's father was a doctor, being that he was a doctor he gave her check up's each month. During the check up's when Amelie's father would check her heart rate her heart would pound extremely fast because that was the only physical contact she ever had with her father. Being that her heart would pound so fast her father thought she was unhealthy and unfit to attend school with other childern therefore, Amelie was home schooled by her mother at a young age until her mother died. That being said Amelie did not have any friends while growing up, because she had no friends Amelie used her imagination a lot. As Amelie grew up she continued to use her imagination, but she also kept to herself, she was very shy, soft spoken, and she also was seen as naive and innocent.

As the movie continues into Amelie's adult hood something spectacular happens to her. In the apartment where Amelie lives she finds an old box full of memories that someone hid years ago. After finding the box Amelie was inspired to return the box to it's owner, but she also made a promise to herself that if the owner was touched after recieving the box after so many years she would be a do gooder for the rest of her life and help people. Amelie did end up finding the gentlemen who owned the box and he was touched, throughout the rest of the movie Amelie helps many different people by restoring happiness within their lives again which in return made her happy also, and in the process she meets the man of her dreams who she falls in love with in the end.

While watching this movie and looking at the elements of Mise en scene within it, I picked out two main things that stood out to me, naturalism and the use of metaphorical props that reflected a certain theme in the movie. The movie was filmed in Paris and the language spoken throuhout the whole movie was French. While watching the movie it felt like I was in Paris the setting and the set were set up perfectly. Being that the movie was filmed in Paris the movie could not escape the element of realism it brought to the screen which is when a movie creates a truthful picture of a society, person, or some other dimension of life. From the cobble stone streets to the architecture, the costuming of the characters, the little shops and boutiques within the city, the cars, and even the pay phones, all screamed Paris which gave the film a strong naturalistic feel. Naturalism in the mise en scene means that how a place looks is the way it is supposed to look. This film does a good job at showing the audience Paris during the time period in which this movie was shot in.

Lastly, When looking at the movies use of metaphorical props one prop that comes to mind is water. Metaphorical props are those same objects reinvented or employed for an unexpected , even magical, purpose. While watching Amelie water played a significant part throughout the film. At the start of the movie it wasnt significant, but as the movie continued it was a crucial theme in the film. One of the first scenes in the movie Amelie's mother makes her get rid of her pet fish. They go to get rid of the fish by throwing the fish into a river. In the scene Amelie and her mother are standing on a bridge overlooking the river, and her mother has the fish bowl in her hand, the mother tips the fish bowl over and the camera shows the water falling down into the river along with the fish. Then the camera shows a close up of the river with the fish in it, and then suddenly the fish disapears then the mother also throws the fish bowl into the water, and the camera shows the fish bowl suddenly disapearing into the water. That is the first significance water plays in the movie, but as the movie progresses the meaning of water within film becomes deeper. Mid way through the film Amelie meets a painter in her apartment building who she is fascinated with. One day she goes into his apartment and takes a look at some of his various paintings. Not only does the painter paint his own paintings, but he also re paints famous paintings that other artist have done. In his collection of paintings there are various paintings that he has re painted with the same girl in it, and in each painting the girl is holding a glass of water. When Amelie ask's the artist about the paintings with girl in it, he says he likes to re paint these paintings, but he always has a hard time capturing the girl holding the glass of water. In response Amelie says, "why" and he says, "because she rarely plays with kids, she doesnt want to be noticed, she cant relate to other people, and she was always a lonely child. Another day Amelie visits the painter again and she tells him that she knows why he cant capture the girl, Amelie states, "maybe the girl is thinking of someone or maybe she wants to help someone." In response the artist says, "maybe she needs to stop thinking of others for a while and think about herself."

The last scene involving water is one of the last scenes of the movie when Amelie has an encounter with the man she falls in love with. In the scene she is at the restaurant where she works, the man she falls in love with comes into the restaurant, but she is to afraid to speak to him and tell him who she is. Once he leaves she melts into a puddle of water and disapears. All in all the appearance of water within the film signifies a way to escape or disapear for Amelie, and the description of the girl holding the glass of water in the painting is the painters way of describing Amelie's personality, because the little girl is holding the glass it signifies her shy personality and the loneliness she feels, just as Amelie felt as a child and part of her adulthood.

I enjoyed this movie a lot and I would recomend it to anyone who is interested in watching it!

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