Practice HSC essay

1059 Words May 16th, 2014 5 Pages
Shakespeare’s play ‘Othello’ and the contemporary appropriation of a film ‘O’ by Tim Blake Nelson are based on the societal values and morals of their time. Issues such as racism, the use of language and deception are timeless making them evident throughout both contexts, hence the engagements in both textual forms.
Differing contexts convey concerns in different ways through the use of diverse techniques. For example ‘Othello’ is a play which uses props, stage positioning and lighting compared to ‘O’ a film using camera angles, technology and music. This develops a sense of timelessness as issues relevant in the Elizabethan era still being relevant in our present day. Both texts are created due to the values of their era, allowing the
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Othello stands under Iago as he declares his supportive intentions. The positioning of characters highlights the power of Iago as he slyly deceits Othello into madness. As Othello is a play the body language the characters expel is what the audience reads. This technique provides an understanding of the deception.
Given that ‘O’ is a film, techniques such as camera shots and the incorporation of modern technology changes factors of how ‘Othello’ is interpreted in our modern society. Camera techniques allow various views to be seen incorporating facial expressions and body language to transcend the story. In the closing scene of ‘O’, Odin is seen as a victim, embodying distress. Close up shots of Odin show his emotion as all is revealed. “I got played. He twisted my head up. He fucked it up. I ain’t no different than none of ya’ll.” (Odin) Odin is enraged with anger, he feels like his life is over. The expressions shown on his face portray this letting the audience feel the deceit and feel apart of the story.
The similarities between ‘Othello’ and ‘O’ outweigh the differences, although there are significant differences that compare both texts. A significant difference in both texts is the change from Elizabethan language to colloquial language. This change was appropriate to adapt to the audience and allow for understanding of the contexts in a modernised appropriation. The quote “Why so I can sir, but I will not now, this is a trick to put me from my suit: Pray you.”

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