Ivan's Childhood Analysis

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The objective of this essay is to analyse specific elements distinctive to Tarkosy’s 1962 film ‘Ivan’s Childhood’. Tarkosy is considered by some as the most influential and successful director in Soviet history. Ivan’s Childhood was produced during the “thaw” period in the Soviet Union. This essay will argue that Tarkovsy effectively communicates to the responder the horror and fear experienced by children who are subject to war through what the protagonist, Ivan a 12 year old Russian boy is subjected to during World War Two. As a first step, this essay will detail the director’s successful use of dream sequences during the film to demonstrate the innocence of childhood. This essay will then examine the various contrasting physical landscapes…show more content…
According … to Ivan’s dreams are the are most “innovative” element of to film as they allowed the viewer to not only witness but experience Ivan’s intensified emotions throughout the duration of the film 1. The first dream presented in the film is the opening sequence. The cross cutting between the butterfly and Ivan’s excited expressions layered with his laughter establish his youth and natural curiosity. In addition, the close up shot of Ivan smiling when he sees his mother warms the responder because they are able to see the genuine love and admiration that he has for his mother. The audience is abruptly shocked when they realise that Ivan’s mother has been killed by the Germans and he is awoken from his dream and must face the reality of war that has consumed him. The dream sequences indicate to the responder Ivan’s yearning for a childhood free of war and subsequent devastation and angers the responder as he has been denied his innocence, freedom and a relationship with his mother due to the conflict 2. However, the last dream sequence is starkly different to the prior three shown in the film which accentuate the loss of his childhood. Although Ivan is deceased, the responder is somewhat relieved that he is no longer a victim of the horror and trauma of war, as demonstrated through his happy interaction with other children and his mother and the beach; which symbolises purity and

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