The Sweet Hereafter Film Analysis

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The Sweet Hereafter, directed by Atom Egoyan, is a film about the devastation caused by a bus crash in a small Canadian community that killed many of the town's children. Like many of Egoyan’s works, this film indicates his directorial style by using film techniques that place the audience in the characters shoes. Egoyan uses nonlinear timelines, motifs and music, along with his great use of camera work, mise en scene, and voice over, to present the plot in a way that engages the audience and leaves an impression long after the film has finished. A scene in the film that shows these techniques is the “Deposition Hearing Scene.” This scene is critical to the rest of the film because it helps the viewers understand Nicole’s character and how she feels towards her father. By having Nicole lie about the bus crash, Nicole is released from the abusive power of her father, Sam. In this scene, at first, Nicole seems vulnerable, but as the scene continues, the audience and character's views of her change.
During the deposition hearing, film techniques help in revealing that Nicole is lying about what happened during the bus crash. The camera pans slowly to show the interview. This makes the atmosphere seem tense and as there is also no background noise in this part of the scene, it seems like a very serious moment of the film. As the scene progresses the smooth panning camera-shots changes to quick, choppy cuts between Nicole, Sam, and Mitchell. This indicates to the audience that

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