Thursday, 7 May 2015

'Spooks' Extract - Ethnicity Representations


  • The estate = the camera tracks behind white woman with a handheld movement - here the the power of British white people is established, as the white 'X' is marked on the door. The ominous non-diegetic synth music at the beginning creates a threatening feeling - almost hinting at conflict between white and coloured people. As the woman leaves a shot there is a pull focus into the background, where the audience can clearly see children of ethnic minority - although there is one white child, suggesting that not all white people are at conflict with coloured groups. We later see two white men pulling out a coloured woman from her flat and throwing all her possessions out. The children in the background are shown with emotionless expressions - they are used to this violent behaviour. This clearly establishes a division between the two groups. 
  • Samson's speech = we see him reflected in the mirror and practising his speech in the bathroom, the lighting is quite threatening (the shadows on his face and the background in darkness) and only parts of Samson are highlighted - this suggests that he poses a threat to other ethnic groups, and may be a deceptive character as well. In the conference room, the lighting is used again to enhance his threatening nature (coming from below the character and shining upwards to cast shadows). The low angle shots of his present him as a superior, powerful figure. The audience, of which majority are white, in the conference room are drowned in darkness, reinforcing the harshness and dark values that this party and its followers support. We see a over-the-shoulder shot and shots where the camera is directly behind Samson as he gives his speech - he is centred in the middle and in the background is the audience clapping and cheering which shows the large power and influence he holds. 
  • Crosscutting = the crosscutting between Samson's speech and the violent attack on the estate shows the disgusting nature of the 'British Way' party and its brutal influence. The handheld camera movements enhance the chaos of the scene - as the whole extract is shown through handheld movement it suggests that the party's values are flawed and uncontrollable, which undermines the powerful speech Samson gives. The ethnic minority are shown as powerless victims, as a group of white men drag an innocent black woman out of her car and attack her. This is representative of some existing, strong racist views against coloured people in today's society - demonstrating white supremacy and the victimisation of ethnic minorities. The sound-bridging of Samson speaking of ethnic groups being violent and destructive, as some 'hold a dirty bomb in their hand', over the crosscutting that shows only the violent nature of the white ethnicity  challenges stereotypical representations of violence and terrorism of ethnic minorities.  

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