The Crucible "The Crucible"

Download 17.23 Kb.
Size17.23 Kb.

Alex Lawrence
HIST 1700

The Crucible

“The Crucible” was to take place in 1692 and 1693, a dark time for many Americans. The film was directed by Arthur Miller around January of 1953. The film was about a real life event that is known as “Salem Witch Trials” where a group of young girls in Salem Village, Massachusetts, claimed to be possessed by the devil and accused several local women of witchcraft. 150 men, women, and children were accused of witch craft and many of them being hanged. The central message of the film was the separation of church and state, and the abuse of power from the government. The accusers would accuse others for their own gain, giving them power over others. The theme of the movie could be described in one word as “integrity".   Integrity was mainly exemplified through John Proctor by demonstrating integrity as he confesses his sins, tries to save his friends, and ultimately gives his life so that he doesn't have to lie.

“The Crucible” was a very moving film because of its message. It was very effective communicating its message because of the actors. I have always learned that a picture can say a thousand words, and can say that that was true with this film. Although the book is very good at describing events and can make you feel the message it’s trying to get to you, a movie is much better at helping you see what truly happened. The film’s strengths were the acting on main actor’s part. I felt like the actors were perfect choice for the parts they played, although I think they could have gotten somebody better for the judge that could make the audience hate him a little more. I don’t feel like he showed his true power that he had in the village. The weaknesses were that it didn’t show how many people this affected and killed. The film could have done better job at showing how the families were divided and the hatred that was going around.

The film did appeal to my reason or emotion by showing me how much power the group of young girls had on everybody around them, and the fact that the people could not defend themselves without lying to the judge so they won’t get hanged. The film really explained well how if church and state were not separated, that your beliefs were set by those with power not by your God or Supreme Being that you believe in. The “good and bad” was decided by the high ranking officials. The church and state must be separate to really give the people freedom. That was the biggest emotion that I felt from that, the fact that you weren’t completely free because there were standards set on what you can worship. At the beginning of the movie a group of girls went dancing in the woods performing some ritual that would have had them hanged if caught, today if somebody saw a group of girls performing some ritual in the woods they just would think of them strange and go on their way.

This film tells me that during the time of late 16th century it was a time when people didn’t understand something so the way they would deal with it is life or death situations. Like in the film “The Crucible” people were afraid of witchcraft because they didn’t understand it so the way they would deal with it is they hanged anybody they thought was a witch. This created a theme of mass hysteria because mass hysteria is often an outlet for jealousy, greed, rage, insecurities, guilt and weakness. Almost all of those things took part in this movie. I learned that the 16th century was a time where you were always afraid so you followed in what others did. This really tells you a lot about the film, during the court scenes the group of girls would act out as if they were being controlled by the devil or hurt by the person that was accused of witchcraft. What one girl did the others followed and did the same thing, this made it all the more believable for the judge that indeed the person that was accused is a witch. Another thing I learned is that because they didn’t have technology or even the ability to learn something for themselves, people could not make decisions that were not common sense to them.

Information that I gained that could not be conveyed by a written source is the horror and fear the people had of each other and for each other. The struggle of something that they did not understand that kill off their family and them by the word of a few “teenagers.” The feeling that I got from watching the movie, was that of frustration and anger at the incompetence of the leaders, in this case the judge, for trusting the words that came out of a child’s mouth. At the end of the movie we saw that Abigail went too far in saying that it was reverend’s wife, a woman that was known for her good. The judge did not believe her then because he knew that could not be so the girl must be lying. So, my question is why he didn’t see that the girl could be lying about everybody she accused of being a witch. I think that I could have gotten that only from watching the movie and not from reading a book or anything because I really need to hear the voices and see the face expressions the characters portrayed.

In conclusion, this movie really opened up my mind to the times where people lived in fear and obeyed/followed others because they didn’t know any better. This film showed me the importance of the separation of church and state, the abuse of power, and the personal gain that people were looking for. This event could not happen again because of our understanding about the world around us but we can see today that people have not changed much when it comes to personal gain and power. I really liked the film because of the history behind it which makes it more meaningful to me as student that is learning about our country’s history.

Download 17.23 Kb.

Share with your friends:

The database is protected by copyright © 2023
send message

    Main page