Good Will Hunting Film Analysis

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Textual Analysis Good Will Hunting, directed by Gus Van Sant and written by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, is a story of a troubled genius finding his place in the world. Will Hunting works as an MIT janitor until solving a math equation gets his talents in the eye’s of Professor Gerald, a math professor. After getting into a fight and potentially going to jail the character decides to attend therapy sessions regularly. Gus Van Sant is a well known director who is known to illustrate emotional meaning through his cinematography. In the specific clip between 1:46:29 - 1:51:45, the director conveys compassion and recognition through the use of the mise en scene. Throughout the five minute clip, the director successfully conveys empathy through…show more content…
Although the five minute clip is the main focus, in order to understand the full symbolism according to color we must first examine the entirety of the film. For example in the sequence where Will is in jail, the director utilizes a blue tint, and color to show his uneasiness and conscientious. This is a general utilization of color commonly seen in cinema to convey uneasiness. In fact, in many of the shots in the movie the color is relatively blue tinted. However the film’s tone changes when we are introduced to Sean. After meeting a multitude of different therapist, Sean, the only successful one, is able to understand Will. This is indicated with the director’s use of the color orange. For example in his office there is always a orange hue, and in the shot of Sean’s expose in front of the park the tint is also orange. This tells the audience that the character, Will Hunting, feels comfortable with Sean. This is again seen when Will Hunting meets his girlfriend at her dorm, or when he's with his friends. There is a general orange tone to the shot. However when the character is uneasy or not familiar with the situation the hue quickly switches to blue. The director is not afraid to switch the color from shot to shot to exemplify his emotions. For example, when Will strikes a job interview the general tone is blue. This again…show more content…
Manipulation of the angle of the camera dates back to the very beginning of cinematography and can be seen among all films. In Good Will Hunting the use of angle is used to express different relationships. For example Sean’s ability to relate to Will compared to the other therapist is clearly illustrated through the different angles shown. The weekly interactions with other therapist contain repetition in the close ups. However the change occurs when we are introduced to Sean, and specifically when the characters meet in the park. Sean is portrayed quite differently than other therapist. In addition Gus San Vant cleverly uses angles within the five minute clip to show the compassion among the characters. For example when Will Hunting first enters and converses with Sean, each shot of the characters are singular in nature. Although some shots do have both characters in frame, both Will and Sean are never, fully, in the same shot. It is not until Will's emotional breakdown that we see a wide angle shot of Will and Sean hugging. This use of angles allows the audience to understand the compassion being expressed. are usually
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