Characteristics Of A Heritage Film

2033 Words 9 Pages
Heritage films refer to a period of films, initially European, that emerged in the 1980’s and 90’s. Though there is a long list of films that are classified as ‘heritage films’, this type of motion picture is not defined as a declared genre, but rather a list of characteristics declared by the movie industry that classify these films. This paper discusses the characteristics that define a ‘heritage film’, how Tom Hooper’s film The King’s Speech represents the characteristics of a ‘heritage film’, and how The King’s Speech represents an updated version of a ‘heritage film’ in comparison to James Ivory’s film, A Room with a View. Pam Cook, author of the article, Costume Drama, declares that ‘heritage films’ are created by respected film-makers, …show more content…
The film follows a young Englishwoman, Lucy Honeychurch, who is touring Italy with her cousin. While at a hotel in Florene, Lucy meets George Emerson, a charming free-spirited young man, who Lucy eventually develops an affection toward. However, once Lucy returns to England, she ponders settling down with a wealthy man by the name of Cecil Vyse. When the free-spirited George reappears in her life, Lucy must decide between him and Cecil. The audience can easily depict the Cook’s ‘heritage film’ characteristics in A Room with a View, the very sumptuous costumes and settings, the use of the classical narrative plot line, and the minute reconstruction of the settings, characters, and storyline to display England’s past. However, unlike The King’s Speech, A Room with a View creates a mythical and over the top vision of England’s history. The King’s Speech film is not without flaws in historical accuracy, but it does not create a fairy-tale like story to depict the history of England. The film, A Room with a View, contains congested sets that are filled with possessions owned by a character, this layout forces the audience to become distracted from the story line and focus on the shear number of items in one room; these settings are very different compared to the simple and elegant settings depicted in The King’s Speech. Though many of the cast members of A Room with …show more content…
James Palace. Most of the rooms the audience find characters in contain elaborate curtains, old paintings, large windows, and sophisticated curtains; however, the set becomes more grand by only having a select few of these articles in the audiences view at a time. The audience can understand that the characters are in a castle by the size of the rooms, the color scheme, and the role to the setting that background characters, like maids and guards, play in the film. More so, the film looks to celebrate the past, but this is not completed without critiquing the past at the same time. Finally, The King’s Speech places more emphasis on selected themes present in the film, including overcoming adversity, bravery, and love. Creating relatable themes throughout the film allows the audience to become personally involved in the

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