Dichotomised Juxtaposition Of Dream And Reality In Ivan's Childhood

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Ivan’s Childhood is all about dichotomised juxtaposition of dream and reality as like the form of the film; black and white. The contrasts between dream and reality are explicitly presented by a series of mise-en-scène and cinematography across the four dream sequences in the film. The opening sequence of Ivan’s Childhood is perhaps the one which establishes the most explicit contrasts and motifs that are applicable to the rest of the dream sequences, employing a series of juxtapositions of dream and reality scenes and conveying the overall meaning as it foreshadows the ending of the narrative. The most expected meaning of the film resulted from these screen effects, for spectator, is a tragedy conveyed by emphasising the contrast of the…show more content…
The medium shot of the boy and a clear sky behind him in a sharp focus offers a sense of ultimate freedom, added with his costume, a bare top, makes him like little Adam in the Paradise. As he looks down, the hand-held camera comes down rather rapidly toward the ground as if he as a bird flies down. This vertical descending movement in his point-of-view generates a sense of easefulness and functions for spectator not only to identify his feeling with theirs but also to offer a symbolic meaning of his dream—the one what he desires but is unattainable.

In the arial shot, there are an old well and a woman holding a pail walking on the path alongside of the seaside. Once Ivan lands on the ground, his mysterious adventure finally ends up with meeting his mother and the climax of the non-diegetic sound indicates that as if she is the end of his journey of dream. He says to her that “mama, there’s cuckoo,” and she smiles. In the subsequent shot, however, she is confined in a low, sudden canted angle and the sound of Ivan’s crying voice “mama!” and a sound effect reminiscent of a cannon ball. In this dream scene, the several motifs as the elements of mise-en-scène are explicitly constructed: a utopian spatial setting; high-key lighting of the figures and deep focus of the scenery; a peaceful sound; water and the seaside; and his mother.
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