discussion film response 4 pan s labyrinth el laberinto del fauno

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  1. The imagery of Pan’s Labyrinth closely connects with the tradition of fairy-tales and fantastic literature. In consultation with the reading on Pan’s Labyrinth’s narrative (esp. pp. 15 – 19), discuss the fairy-tale elements and narrative conventions used in the film. Make sure to address: (1) key characters of fairy tales as described by Vladimir Propp; how are these characters (magical helpers, villains, etc.) used in the film? Do these traditional characters ever take an unusual role: e.g. do magical helpers ever become villains? (2) other fairy-tale elements and iconography used in the film (the number three [or the trebling], the moral resolution, the key, etc.). How is the fairy-tale intertwined in the film with “reality”? How does the film’s conception of fairy tales and monsters conform or break with fairy-tale mythology in terms of characterization and resolution?
  2. In consultation with the reading on the film’s genre (pp. 21 – 28), discuss how Pan’s Labyrinth draws on the genres of horror and fantasy. What traditional conventions and iconography of both genres does the film utilize? Does the director ever depart from or re-interpret the classical conventions of both genres? Give specific examples from the film. (For those of you interested in and familiar with other films of similar genres, feel free to compare Guillermo Del Toro’s film with other examples such as Harry Potter or The Chronicles of Narnia).
  3. The consultation with the reading on the film’s messages and values, provide a detailed discussion / interpretation of one of the film’s key themes (some of the themes that Tanya Jones, the author of your reading, points out are oppression and resistance, activity and passivity, family and gender, childhood, death and rebirth). Feel free to explore another theme or motif that you feel is prominent in the film (e.g. as some might argue that a prominent motif in the film is clocks. Is there anything else that you noticed?)
  4. Discuss the film’s pictorial references (Goya, Rackham), lighting, color, and the use of diegetic and non-diegetic sound. How do the film’s aural and visual components establish the boundaries of the real world and the fantasy environment? Is the fantasy world always presented as escapist? (as an example, consult pp. 43 – 44: what is the role of the color red in the scenes depicting the lair of the Pale Man?)
  5. And short peer review for this one : 1.In the imagery of Pan’s Labyrinth, the key characters described are portrayed as magical helpers such as the Faun. When Ofelia’s mother was going through the sickness from her labor the Faun brought Ofelia a magical root which helped in healing her mother. But this then turns sideways when Ofelia disobeys the Faun’s order and shortly after that the tragedy with her mother’s death arises. It can then be seen as though the magical helper suddenly turned into a villain when his orders weren’t obeyed, but then flips again at the end when he shows up in the scene with her mother and father and tells her she made the right choice in choosing herself instead of sacrificing her brother.Other fairy tale elements include the visualization of the Faun and the fairies the Faun resembles an avatar while the fairy can bring thoughts of tinker bell. The fairy tale intertwines through the way everything is played out. It almost reminds me of the show Once Upon A Time because of the book and how it would only reveal to her what her next task was. It was as though the book itself was telling the future to what would happen next.The films conception of fairy tales and monsters conforms with fairy-tale resolution because at the end of many fairy tales its either a hero dies, or someone falls in love.2.The film utilizes horror and fantasy. The film incorporates both genres in a way that is seen in many other movies and follows a similar format. In the scene when Ofelias mother throws away the magic root you can see the fantasy portrayed through the cries of the root and then the horror comes when her mother falls to the ground clutching her stomach in pain. It shows the connection between the health of the magic root and the health of her mother.3.Childhood, death, and rebirth are the first themes that I noticed as the film began, in the beginning it was giving the background story to the princess who had died and then it shows the very last scene when Ofelia was dying but at the moment it wasn’t known that was Ofelia instead I had assumed it was the princess from the fairytale. The films message for these themes is portrayed through Ofelia. She is seen as the reincarnation of the former princess or that’s what the Faun wants her to believe. In the scene when Ofelia has the encounter with the pale man it can be seen the many lives of children that were sacrificed there. It made it seem as though that was a message to Ofelia to try and save any other children who would’ve been eaten by the monster.From the beginning I also noticed how adventurous Ofelia was, her sense of adventure and wandering is what brought her into this fantasy world.4.The role of the color red from the pale man scene depicts the blood shed from all the children that he’s eaten. But besides that, the use of color in the movie was very important in depicting the sense of environment that was being portrayed. the use of the color green and darker colors depicts the underground world that Faun lived in. That color was only predominant when Ofelia visited Fauns underground world.

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