Music, Dialogue, and Mise-en-scène in the Dance of Death

Powerful Essays
Music, Dialogue, and Mise-en-scène in the Dance of Death In all cinematic works the mise-en-scène is one of the most influential aspects of the film’s meaning. Mise-en-scène is important because it shows how the cinematic space is organized and where the camera is in respect to the characters and the surrounding environment. Although the mise-en-scène is imperative by itself, the effect of the music and dialogue that accompany the scene in a film adds to its meaning. These facts are supported by the “Dance of Death” scene of the narrative Bamboozled by Spike Lee. The dialogue written by Mr. Lee and the music score chosen for the film by Terence Blanchard aid in the overall cinematic effect of these scenes in the movie. When the chapter is broken down into the individual scenes and montages we are able to analyze why sound and the mise-en-scène is important to this film. Each scene contains individual elements that help the story develop into it what it is meant to be, a look at the racial injustices of the past that still exist today. The chapter starts as the Mau Maus come to the television studio and abduct Mantan in the back alley after he was barred from the set. At this point, not a word is spoken but from every angle in which the alley is shot you can see a poster of the show that has lead to Mantan’s downfall. You as the view have no idea what is happening because you see Mantan put his hands up. In the reverse shot, there are only what seems to be the headlights of a vehicle, the camera then moves directly to the side of Mantan. Once Mantan has been taken to the abandoned warehouse where the Mau Maus have planned for him to die, we start to see the constant use of filming inside of the movie itself. The entire... ... middle of paper ... ... of the background area allows the viewer to take in and fully understand the meaning of a scene. While the visual is important to mise-en-scène, the addition of music and dialogue only aids the viewer in understanding what the writer is trying to convey. In Bamboozled the use of dialogue and music helps Spike Lee express the racial imbalances and stereotypes of the past that are still in effect today. My choice to use “Dance of Death” to exemplify why these elements are important, was honorable because it compiles so many visual tactic into a small portion of the movie. When a director of a movie is planning to evoke their viewers with emotion and purpose it is important that they visually stimulate with the mise-en-scène. At the same time they also must utilize sound in the form of music and dialogue to give the full effect of their cinematic expression.
Get Access