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The Princess Bride is a timeless tale depicting a heart-warming story about true love. The film, directed by Rob Reiner, was released in 1987 and is still a well-loved romantic classic. In order to position the audience to feel touched and elated for Westley and Buttercup’s love, the director made clever choices regarding the camera angles, love, colours and music.
The colours utilised in the final scene evoke feelings of purity and satisfaction. An effective colour scheme is used when the protagonists are riding off into a picturesque sunset; light blue, pale yellow and blush pink hues portray happiness, love and affection. This is because blue typically represents trust and loyalty, pink conveys friendship or affection, and yellow reflects positivity and optimism. Therefore, The Princess Bride uses light shades that are commonly associated with positive emotions to position the audience to feel elated and satisfied.
The camera shots and angles in this scene are effective in manipulating the audience to feel joyous. The scene most effective in displaying happiness is the ‘sunset scene’; this scene utilises a long shot to establish a relationship between the characters and the background. In the foreground, there is a serene forest and mountain range. In the middle ground, four protagonists majestically ride into the background. By focusing on the middle ground of this long shot, it highlights their escape and implores the audience to feel joyful. The background, however, displays a beautiful sunset and further accentuates the tones of happiness, which enables the viewers to feel gleeful. The scene concludes with a close up on the couple kissing. This is an eye level, close up shot, to display Westley and Buttercup’s passionate kiss. The camera techniques in the final scene develop the chemistry and romance between the main characters, making the audience feel uplifted.
The music was used in conjunction with the colour and camera shots to expertly position the audience to feel moved and elated for Buttercup and Westley’s love. As Buttercup makes her descent from the window, the music descends as well. The bright and ethereal music from the flute’s melody decrescendos to a softer piano dynamic and the viewer’s perception from the scene shifts from anxious and tense to satisfied and delighted. The scene then resumes on Inigo and Westley, as sweet, harmonious, non-diegetic music plays, which emphasises the trust and friendship between these two characters before they exit the castle. As the quartet exits the gates of the castle and into the scenic sunset the music crescendos into the beautiful melody. This melody creates a sense of jubilation by using coloured and gentle violins, cellos, flutes, violas and pianos. To conclude the final scene and enhance the romantic relationship between Westley and Buttercup, a light, staccato piano is overlayed by a gently plucked guitar, and the flutes play the same warm melody as the two lovers lean in for a kiss. The music then repeats and fades as the piano completes its run to conclude the song. This scenic music provides a captivating romantic mood for the audience as these light instruments convey joyous and intimate themes.
Overall, the purposeful use of music, camera shots and colour in the final scene allows the audience to feel a sense of satisfaction and romance for the character’s delightful ending. While The Princess Bride’s main themes are centred on loyalty, the variety of camera angles, pastel colours and mystical music portrays a fantasy esque romance story.
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