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The Power of Visual Imagery The film Dead Man Walking successfully uses a variety of effective imagery techniques to draw powerful emotions from its viewers Much of the films success is due to the director Tim Robbins as well as the cast Before seeing the film Dead Man Walking I never looked at the actual people involved in the process of capital punishment I looked at the issue itself and not the people who are part of capital punishment Robbins successfully personifies the issue of capital punishment and helps to give a balanced view of the issue This balance is achieved in a variety of visual imagery techniques including framing point of view flashbacks and particularly emotional or effective scenes The first imagery technique that I would like to discuss is framing There are many scenes throughout the film that utilize close ups For instance there is a close up of Helen holding the bars with her face pressed against them As the time for Poncelets execution nears the camera zooms in on the clock This is a very dramatic way to signify that the end for Poncelet is near Most people dont actually realize that the time before a death row inmate is to be executed can be very hard on the inmate Point of view also plays a part in the effectiveness of the film It is especially effective in creating balance in this film Poncelet is always seen by Helen through bars or some type of barrier Helen is seen by Poncelet in the same way I believe that this was an intentional move by Robbins It is almost as if it is showing viewers the line between good and evil Near the end of the film right before Poncelet is to be executed he says his last words in a crucifix like position However the next scene is Hope and Walters bodies being found in a crucifix
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