Color as Metaphor in Film What Dreams May Come

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Looking at landscape art, especially when painted by one of the masters, many have undoubtedly pondered: what would it be like to live there? Shapes and attention to detail are, of course, important in a painting. However, it is color that draws the eye and inspires the heart. Oscar Wilde, an Irish poet and dramatist, spoke well of this when he noted that, “Mere color, unspoiled by meaning, and unallied with definite form, can speak to the soul in a thousand different ways. (qtd in “color”)”. Vincent Ward had a similar understanding of this impact when, in 1998, he directed the movie What Dreams May Come. Looking at this film, one can easily imagine being inside a living painting. The use of color to emphasize the emotional state of a…show more content…
Using this deeper shade highlights the intensity of her loss and confusion without over powering the scene. As the days and weeks pass by, Annie tries to return to a normal life. However, with the other half of her soul gone, she finds this to daunting of a task. Sitting at her vanity, wearing a very pale lavender gown, she chooses to end her life. She places several crushed pills into a bowl of pudding, and after eating it, she waits to die. The lightness of purple used here shows that it is not her will that is weak; it is the weakness of her connection with Chris that drives her to make this fatal choice. After learning of Annie’s suicide and the self induced hell she will face, Chris makes the decision to enter hell, find Annie, and return with her to heaven. By using their connection as a sort of homing device, Chris descends ever deeper in to the pit of despair. He finds himself falling through an actual sea of faces where, after landing on the floor of hell’s basement, locates what looks like a dilapidated version of his and Annie’s house. Everything that can be seen in this purgatory looks as if the color has been drained by a leech. Black, gray, dirty yellows and sepia like tones abound in all directions, except for a single tree, which stands in front of the door to the house. This one tree, standing in defiance of the dreary world around it,

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