Books and Movies Reviews

Shall we Dance

Shall we Dansu, directed and written by Masayuki Suo, has a subtle artistic appeal to any viewer.The film hints at an even greater dilemma in life that relates to the audience.When we have it all, the car, the house, 2.5 children will it be enough? Mr. Sugiyama is a forty-something who goes to sit at a desk and work in an office building and then goes home to his wife and daughter. As he commutes home the train stops at a station and when he looks up, Sugiyama sees a lovely young woman looking out the window of a dance school. Every time the train stops at that station, there she is. So one day he gets off the train and goes up to the dance studio where he signs up for lessons. In this movie the visual symbols convey more or just as much as the actual conversations held between characters.The lighting and the body language are the two most effective visual symbols used to bring the viewer into the plot.
At the start of the movie everything is dull and dark nothing is bright with the exception of the street signs. This cold gray overcast lets it be known that Mr. Sugiyama is depressed and unhappy with his life. Almost every scene before he starts his dance lessons contain very calming colors such as whites, blacks, blues, grays. You feel the unhappiness and despair. Then on the train he looks up and sees this dance studio glowing with warm light. This is the answer to his depression.Once he starts the lessons every time he is at the studio warm colors are present. The colors help to communicate emotion.Hot or warm colors express excitement, intensity, urgency, passion, heat, love, excitement, and strength. All of which Mr. Sugiyama feels when he dances. Cool colors express dignity, power, melancholy, heaviness, trust, reliability, sophistication, death, rebellion, and emptiness. All of which he feels before he starts dance lessons. Mia Kishikawa is the object of his affection, but we soon learn that she has her own problems…


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