Strictly Ballroom Belonging Essay Conclusion

The opening scene highlights a fantasy world, depicting silhouettes of ballroom dancers gracefully dancing to the famous waltz, ‘The Blue Danube’, followed by images of the glitzy and glamorous dancers in their brilliant costumes.It is a world the audience is set up to admire: we would all would like to belong to it. The crosscutting to the interviews at the beginning of the film surprises the audience, sending up the content of the interview and the exaggerated seriousness of the characters’ approach to ballroom dancing.Through Fran and her Spanish culture, Scott is transformed as he learns the value of dancing from his heart, and the true spirit of family and belonging.

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Rebellion against expected ways of belonging is also explored in the extract from ‘Slow cycle’ as the persona leaves her husband to travel through Morocco in a quest for identity.

Marriage is integral to how we live in society, making an exploration of the barriers to an effective relationship worthy of discussion and incorporation into ‘Belonging in our Society’.

Sometimes this longing is so strong that it prevents us from exploring our own desires and from fulfilling our own dreams.

Our need to belong can also force us to compromise our own values and adhere to expected codes of behaviour. These issues of rebellion and belonging are poignantly explored in Baz Luhrmann’s film ‘Strictly Ballroom’ an Australian classic that humorously pokes fun at the frivolous world of ballroom dancing to highlight the values of self-belief and self-will, and the difficulties in expressing these in an oppressive society.

When we are comfortable with our choices we have a better chance of belonging in a meaningful manner to a group, community or society.

In this collection ‘Belonging in our Society’, therefore, ‘Strictly Ballroom’ and the extract from ‘Slow cycle’ successfully address the implications of rebellion and self-expression on an individual’s ability to comfortably belong while maintaining identity.‘Strictly Ballroom’ successfully creates humour by satirising aspects of the ballroom dancing world, showing the restrictions placed on the individual’s desire for self-expression and individuality.The extract from Nerida Wayland’s ‘Slow cycle’ also explores the values of identity and self-expression and their effect on an individual’s ability to belong in a meaningful way in marriage.To me, ‘Strictly Ballroom’ and ‘Slow cycle’ are worthy additions to ‘Belonging in our Society’ because they explore the emotional impact of rebellion and its effect on belonging in society.This highlights the persona’s isolation and confusion in the absence of security and belonging.The persona is uncertain about her decision to leave the marriage and travel on her own.The interviews describe the events of the recent Southern District Waratah Championships, where Scott Hastings dared to express his individuality through unconventional dance steps. ’ The word ‘tragedy’ makes the audience laugh at her exaggeration.A tone of mock tragedy is expressed through Shirley’s lament, ‘I kept asking myself, “Why? The open framing here as Scott dances out of the shot conveys the sense of rebellion, juxtaposing the image with the closed framing of the ‘strictly ballroom’ waltz in the scene.Making a decision to rebel against expected ways of being can have a significant emotional impact on an individual’s sense of self.However, when we objectively observe the influences in our lives, we are better able to decide a course of action that is most suited to our personal judgments and aspirations.Close-ups of Scott’s softly lit face show his sense of enlightenment and desire to connect with the values of the Spanish community.Ya Ya taps Scott’s gut and chest, mimicking the rhythm of the heartbeat, illustrating Scott’s realisation of where the real rhythm should come from.


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