Mario A. Hernandez
Dogville is a 2003 Drama film directed by Lars von Trier. The film is an allegorical moral tale that delves into the human condition and on its conscience to end upportraying the thin and fragile line between good and evil, the selfless love and the use of people for own purposes. Von Trier accomplishes this portrayal, with the use of a beautiful and naive youngwoman, Grace (Nicole Kidman) who, pursued by a squad of gangsters, arrives in Dogville, a remote village. There, Tom, a young enlightened and the spokesman of the town, offers to hide her in exchange fora counterpart: to do some small services to each of the neighbors in order to gain their trust. Over time, with the police and gagster strong search for Grace, the demands of work harden for her,until she literally becomes Dogville’s slave. Throughout contrast events within the story, of course, and even through some cinematic techniques, von Trier seeks to further our understanding of humannature.
The first shot of the film, an aerial/stablishing shot, presents a large black space, a huge stage where chalk lines defined the houses’ floor plans of Dogville, a modest village whoseinhabitants live along a short street. In this first shot of the film we also get to hear the voice of the narrator, which right away contrast with what is observe on screen. The narrator gives adescription of the houses, and even tells us that Tom’s house is the best of all them, however the only thing seen on screen is the absence of walls, the blueprints of the houses, and on the floor of eachhouse the printed name of its owner. This contrast is well supported with the aerial angle shot where the minimal stage, set design and props are noticed. Conversely this very first part of the film,with its aerial shot, the narrator and the minimal scenography, is able to convey a prologue for what the sense of the story will be throughout the entire film. A story of contrasts that tries to...
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