Many films are brought forth from literature. Reynolds, 2014) Studies reveal owe symbolism used by film makers can act as a bridge between thoughts and feelings, cognition and aesthetics. Symbolism in a film can be so subtle, the film’s viewers may not be aware it exists. A symbol appears when an image is surrounded by conscious and unconscious associations and its impact is dependent upon its cultural context. Film directors assimilate symbols with character, theme, and predicament. (Backbone, 1974) Symbolism is an approach used abroad to express a message that deeper, alternative for language when it’s shared and enhances the message that’s intended.
Symbolism is when something represents something. For example; a dove could represent peace and a lighted candle could represent hope and prosperity. (Hog and Jackson, 2010) In the film, “Winter Light”, Ingram Bergman repeatedly uses water symbolizing the still body of a man who has committed suicide. In the film, “Gummy”, the scene before the last, it’s raining and the song “Crying’ is playing in the background. The song and the rain symbolize God’s tears at the sin of the residents.
In the film, “The Spenserian Trilogy”, Peter has multiple father figures such as his secretive biological ether, adoptive father, Norman, and Doc Co. In the film, Peter, aka Spenserian, is trying to find his way through life. Spenserian symbolizes how we all go about finding our own ways in life. Many of the Disney films contain symbolism because they are always full of color, and these colors usually symbolize something of significance. In the film, “Beauty and the Beast”, Belle is wearing a yellow dress. Her yellow dress symbolizes her and the Beasts’ youth, strength, and growing love for one another.
Later in the film Belle’s father stumbles upon the Beast’s castle. It’s a dark, stormy night with lighting across the sky, which symbolizes the terror her father feels when looking for the castle. I do find symbolism in most, if not all of the above mentioned films, surprising because when viewing the film for the first time, did not know exactly what the film was about or what would take place within the scenes. I was not looking for anything symbolic. I find symbolism, or symbolic figures, in a film make for a more interesting film.
I find it makes the film more unique, interesting, and fascinating because it’s like you are finding denied treasures within the film. You can find symbolism in pretty much any film, book, or song if you kick hard enough.