Essay on Analysis Of The Movie ' Gosford Park '

1482 Words Nov 30th, 2016 6 Pages
In thinking about the English country house and the lifestyle that came with it, it is undeniable that what often comes to mind is the forms of conspicuous consumption that were displayed both inside the country house, and also on the country house inhabitants. Displaying oneself was not only meant for the London Season, but during visits to friends as well. At the same time, what is also “not seen” plays a significant role as well. While on the surface the country house is revered as an elegant and extravagant mansion filled with multiple layers of conspicuous consumption, the life of those who have the crucial task of upholding this image is often held up in contrast. For an upstairs, there is a downstairs, and for every well-polished lady, there is a lowly servant who stays out of sight, making her presentable. However, this starkly contrasted and romanticized image of the country house was far from the way director Robert Altman hoped to present country house life in his movie, Gosford Park. In this 2001 murder-mystery film, the 1930s country house is depicted as a place that relied much on the idea of appearance and “being seen.” While the movie shows numerous themes of country house life, this essay will focus in particular on the themes dealing with themes of the presence of the “outsider”, familial bonds, and the intermingling between the upstairs and the downstairs. In doing so, this essay argues that the director’s interpretation of country house life in the 1930s…

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