Presentation on theme: "Gray Alston and Jordan Noble. “A long time ago, in the underground realm, where there are no lies or pain, there lived a Princess who dreamed of the human."— Presentation transcript:
Gray Alston and Jordan Noble
“A long time ago, in the underground realm, where there are no lies or pain, there lived a Princess who dreamed of the human world. She dreamed of blue skies, soft breeze, and sunshine. One day, eluding her keepers, the Princess escaped. Once outside, the brightness blinded her and erased every trace of the past from her memory. She forgot who she was and where she came from. Her body suffered cold, sickness, and pain. Eventually, she died. However, her father, the King, always knew that the Princess' soul would return, perhaps in another body, in another place, at another time. And he would wait for her, until he drew his last breath, until the world stopped turning...”
After moving with her mother to a military outpost in Spain, a young girl named Ofelia discovers a labyrinth in the woods, and finds herself drawn into a real world fairytale, filled with danger and magic. Set in 1944, the story takes place during the end of World War II. While Ofelia’s mother labors through her pregnancy, Ofelia learns from a mysterious faun that she is a princess from another world, reborn into a human body. The faun tells her that she must complete three tasks if she is to return to her world and rule as queen.
Pan’s labyrinth is a wonderfully told story that captures the minds of its’ audience with tales of magic and adventure. The viewer can find themselves fighting against fascist soldiers in one moment, and drawing doorways into other worlds the next. One of the more interesting things I noticed about this movie was the connection to The Golden Compass. Both stories follow a girl (Ofelia, Lyra) who is given a special item (Book of Crossroads, alethiometer). Each of the girls must travel to a new world to complete a specific task. Whether or not this connection was intentional or not, the fact that the stories are so similar really helped me to understand the story better.
As I watched Pan’s Labyrinth one scene stuck out in my mind as being pivotal in my understanding of human rights throughout the film. When the captain captures the last living rebel he plans to ask him to tell of the rebel plans. He notices the captives stutter and says “If you can count to three without stuttering I will let you free”. The poor rebel can not complete the task and is brutally beaten for no purpose to the point of wishing death upon himself, so that he does not have to suffer. It made me realize how harsh a person could be to one of their own kind, and quite frankly it disgusts me to know the ignorance of the human mind.
Ofelia’s adventure is not the only story to be told. While Ofelia completes each of her three tasks, her stepfather, a fascist captain, is hunting down a group of rebels hiding in the woods. One of the servants working at the outpost has a brother in the rebellion, and she attempts to help them whenever she can, along with the doctor caring for Ofelia’s mother. The rebels are continually growing weaker, with their only sign of hope being the reinforcements that they have heard are on the way. But until they arrive they are forced to fight against unbeatable odds, and they suffer greatly for it.
Following the Spanish Civil War, rebels were continuing to hide out in Spain, as the new fascist regime sought to hunt them down. It was the belief of the fascist regime that the rebels needed to be completely eradicated to establish the new power in the world. This belief is apparent during a scene in the movie in which a captured rebel soldier is tortured to the brink of death. During a break in the captain’s assaulting of the man for information, the doctor comes in and gives him medicine to end his life. When the captain finds out about the doctor’s ending of the rebel’s suffering, he kills the doctor in his anger. The deaths of these men are prime examples of the injustices committed by the fascist soldiers.
The death of the doctor and rebel lead to the climax of the film. It is because of this that the secretly rebel maid decides to try and run away, and Ofelia goes with her. The two are caught and brought back to the outpost, but their escape attempt gives the Rebel reinforcements enough time to arrive. Just as the captain is about to kill the maid, the rebels begin their final assault on the outpost, and the captain finds himself losing control of the situation entirely. It is at this point that Ofelia seizes the opportunity and tries to complete her final task. All of this is triggered by the death of two men.