Smoke Signals Theme

1343 Words 6 Pages
Smoke Signals
A Young Man’s Journey of Self-Discovery In Chris Eyre’s independent film, Smoke Signals, he tells the story of a young boy named Victor Joseph and his journey to forgiveness in the late 20th century. In the beginning, Arnold Joseph, Victor’s father, accidentally sets Thomas Builds-The-Fire’s home on fire in his drunken haze, killing Thomas’s parents on the Coeur d'Alene Reservation in Idaho. He miraculously saves baby Thomas as he was thrown out of the burning building. Arnold goes through his life alternating between being abusive towards his family, being drunk, and sometimes, being both at the same time. Arnold finally leaves after having a falling-out with Victor’s mother, Arlene, taking off to Arizona. Arnold leaves with
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The main theme of the movie was forgiveness, not only for Arnold, but for himself. When Victor finally gains the courage to forgive Arnold, it is a big reason that Victor is able to lead a happy life. This also lets hims forgive himself because he realizes that his father leaving is not his fault and that he could not control his father’s actions. He finds out from Suzy that he talked about the fire every day and how he wished that it hadn’t happened. “But,” Suzy said, “he did one good thing that day, he ran into that house to save you, Victor.” When Victor realizes that his father risked his life to save him, he finds closure in realizing that his father loved him and only wanted what was best for him and his …show more content…
One of the most prevalent editing techniques within the movie were flashbacks to Victor’s childhood. The many flashbacks that were seamlessly integrated into the plotline provided background for why Victor grew up the way he did. For example, when Victor and Thomas were eating at a restaurant, Thomas recalled a story when Arnold Joseph invited him to eat breakfast at Denny’s. As Thomas told his story, Victor only recalled the day his dad had left his family. He remembered throwing beer bottles at his dad’s truck, his mom arguing with his dad, his dad throwing his mother to the floor, and his dad taking off in his yellow truck. Victor realizes that he doesn’t remember any of the good times he had with his father, which was preventing him from forgiving him and letting Victor lead a normal life on the

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