Crash – Initial Response

  1. Write a brief plot overview

Several connected stories are intertwined including race, class and gender over 72 hours in LA after 9/11.

2. Discuss a character that was of interest to you and explain why

A character that was of interest to me was Daniel. I think this was because at first he was portrayed as such a different character to how she was. At first, he was shown with a moustache, tattoos and working a pretty low paying job as a locksmith. We then saw him go home and have a daughter. He was such a loving dad, making her feel safe and tucking him in. He also jumped in front of a “bullet” for her. He was very likeable.

3. What do you believe the director’s intention was – explore this and the moments that allow you to experience this.

I think the director had a few intentions, but the main one was to break down stereotypes that we hold about people. We can see he had this intention because he casts the characters into their “stereotypes”. The rich white lady, the young black men as thugs, even a beautiful “naive” woman. He then leads you along a journey of all of these people following these stereotypes. Such as Dorri, who cracked under the pressure when the gun shop assistant was being rude and bought blanks accidentally. Or when Anthony discovers the van with Koreans people in the back. Instead of selling them, he decides to let them free and gives them money. “Look, here’s 30 bucks. Buy everybody chop suey.” These are all moments of breaking the preconceived ideas we had of the characters based on what they looked like and first impressions.

4. How did Haggis use stereotypes to manipulate viewers.

A bit like I said above, Haggis cast these people into roles that “fit them” and then through the plot unfolded their characters and showed how to everyone acts the way we think they “should”.

5. Discuss and research the setting of LA. Why do you think it was set there and how did it influence the plot/interactions.

The movie crash was set post 911. This affected the interactions that each character had significantly. By setting the movie after 911, we can truly see the heightened racial tension between “white Americans” and “foreigners”. “they think we’re Arab. When did Persian become Arab?”. We can see that people are stereotyping and assuming that all people who are foreign are from one race. It is ironic because if someone was to do that to an American they would be so offended.

6. Were there any cinematography techniques that stood out to you? Choose ONE and discuss its effect (presenting director’s intention, causing a viewer realisation…)

One technique that stood out to me was when Ryan was running towards the crash, and the camera was shaky and following him. I feel as if by using this technique it truly heightens the tension and we can see how “tense” the scene is.

Crash – Judgments

These two people look to be in high-end corporate jobs. I picture working in a skyscraper. I think this is because he’s wearing a suit and she looks to be wearing a nice dress. Definitely a couple also. Their clothing and jewellery led me to believe that they have a decent amount of money. They don’t really seem trustworthy to me. More like the people who will step on your toes to get what they want. I think they will be somewhat stuck up, classic white rich family.

I am sure to sure what profession these guys are in. They look to be young so possibly still studying or staying at homee before figuring out what to do in their lives. THe guy on the left looks like a gangsta because of his cornrows and the way he ismoving and the moustache. But the guy on the right looks more well done wearing a nice jacket it looks like. They do appear to be trustworthy to me as they look friendly. I think their personality would kind of be idgaf type vibe. Almost too cool for school.

She looks like the typical “im a mess” female. Works a well-paying job but is still single, possibly divorced. This is because this image portrays her as a “mess” almost will unmade hair and little to no makeup wearing a decently plain t-shirt. However she does look trustworthy and I this is because she has a nice face, and looks like the cool aunty. I think her personality would be loving and caring but also she does what she wants to get her way.

This man right here looks like a PE teacher. The lockers behind, receding hairline and what looks to be a tracksuit jumper leads me to these conclusions. He looks mean almost, maybe it is the bushy eyebrows. So no i don’t think he is trustworthy. He looks like he would threaten me with a not achieved if i wasn’t running fast enough. I think his personality is cold, stern, harsh and not so nice.

He is the bad guy in this film. He works at a car dealership and scams people of their money because he takes the good parts out of cars and replaces them for a bad part and then gives it back to the owner saying he “fixed it”. 100% not trustworthy. You can’t see much of his clothing but he looks to be middle aged and has a stern look on his face. He is the crazy man.

This man is the guy who just wants everyone to get along and he wants everyone to be happy. He also works a high-end corporate job and has money. You can see this because he is wearing a suit and has one of those posh scarves around his neck. He is loving and caring and very trustworthy. The father you never had.

Boss lady. She is the one you go to to get stuff done. She is determined, passionate and knows what is right. She is trustworthy as long as you stay on her side of the team. Profession, business of some sort. Her eyeliner leads me to believe she is bold.

He is only rich because of daddys money and he wears those little blue scarves because he thinks they look cool. He is sly and backstabbing, not one to trust at all. He doesn’t work, but possibly his family is in the drug business. He also has fountains outside of his house. THe lady beside him is his wife and her job is to look pretty.

He got the not acheieved from the pe teacher. But he doesnt work he is a student. A pretty basic guy off of the clothing he is wearing. But he is not trust worthy he would go and tell his homies anything you say.

2017 Close reading exam practice

Question One: Prose


Personification – “where the bank reared up high and the stream snaked…”

(b) Explain how this other language feature helps you to understand the boys’ experience within the setting. You might consider how a particular mood is created and/or sustained.

The text Into the River describes a journey two young boys are taking to explore a local river to find the big eels whilst hiding from a grumpy farmer. The boys’ experience throughout their journey is displayed as difficult and challenging, but rewarding once they achieve what they have been working for. Dawe demonstrate this idea by using language features such as personification and onomatopoeia.

By using personification, Dawe describes the stream like a snake, snaking through a series of deep pools. “where the bank reared up high and the stream snaked in a series of deep pools”. By personifies the stream to a snake, it not only describes the twisting and thin nature of the path that the boys were taking, but it also shows us something about their journey. A snake is a predatorial animal, sneaking in the background waiting to pounce on its prey. This is the same as the Goldsmith who lives in a farmhouse, who will scold the boys if they are seen on his land. This personification helps us to understand the boys challenging and tiring trip of having to hide from a man of power to get to their goal and it develops the tense mood as we hope the boys will not get caught.

The idea of the snake is developed further when Dawe describes the “hissing mud” where “in some places their fists sank deep”. By using the same concept of the snake (only this time demonstrating it through onomatopoeia) the predatorial mood is sustained. We still hold the idea that the boys are the prey of the Goldsmith and that they are in his land which is why the mud is hissing at them. Another example of onomatopoeia is the “cackle of some distant tui”. By using cackling it sounds as if the birds are almost laughing at the boys, and this sustains the idea that the boys are of the target of attack as they are trespassing in someone else’s land. This helps us to understand the experience the boys had as well, as not only is the course they are taking challenging, but they also have to deal with being a target and being looked down on by nature.

The poem Into the River explains to the reader something about environments and how they adapt. In this text, the environment was making it hard for the boys to get to see the big eels as it knew the Goldsmith does not allow the boys on his land. This is an interesting idea of how an owner can change its environment and in this case, the land has morphed into a tough place for the boys with snaking streams and mud so deep it hisses. The boys had a hard experience as the man above it all, the Goldsmith, controlled the land.

1.1 Practice

Macbeth is a play written in the 17th century. The plot describes the main character, Macbeth as a courageous, Scottish general who is rather benign in nature. It is when his inner desire to advance and gain power engrosses him that he changes and becomes a killing machine engrossed by guilt and paranoia. The deterioration of his mindset is shown through his hallucinations, use of metaphors and the weak foot of iambic pentameter.


Throughout the play, Macbeth encounters multiple apparitions that show him beginning to lose his sanity and seeing things that aren’t really there. When making the decision whether he was going to kill his king, King Duncan sees a ‘dagger’ before him. He exclaimed in shock “is that a dagger before me, the handle towards my hand. Come let me clutch thee. have thee not yet I thee still”. By hallucinating seeing a bloody dagger, the future instrument of his crime


 I met a traveller from an antique land A
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone B
Stand in the desert… near them, on the sand, A
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown, C
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command, A
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read D
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things, E
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed: D

And on the pedestal these words appear: F
‘My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: E
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!’ F
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay G
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare F
The lone and level sands stretch far away G


Visual Language


Mis en Scene




Helix Staircase

Image result for double helix in gattaca

Modernist Architecture

  • Clean
  • Form = Function
  • Geometric
  • Cynicism
  • Looking away from God (self+science)
  • Utopia – progress moving forward

Second Place “Swimmer”

Double-breasted suits

Make connections

Supporting ideas

Ambition – resides in Jermone and Vincent

Gattaca talks about ambition is a virtue because Vinect achieved his goal whilst maintaining a high amount of moral


How does Andrew Niccol encode his ideas in the visual language of his film, Gattaca?

In the film, Gattaca, the director Andrew Niccol uses visual language for the watcher to unlock a deeper understanding of the movie and its concepts. In the house of Jerome, the staircase that leads to the second floor is in the shape of a helix. To understand the meaning behind the helix we have to know about the movie and what it is about. Gattaca is a movie which is set in the future where human genetic engineering is the new norm. Babies are designed to have the best possible traits without defects. Even the title Gattaca hints towards human DNA, being named after the 4 nucleobases in human DNA. Eugenics is a set of beliefs and practices which aims to improve the human genetic. In Gattaca, society discriminates against those who are not genetically designed and are conceived naturally. Victor was of natural birth, which means the only job that he would ever be able to get at Gattaca is a cleaner. To fulfil his dream od being going to space he takes the identity of Jerome who is genetically perfect, apart from the fact that he is disabled. Victor lives the dream of Jerome. The helix staircase in Jermone’s house hints towards the double helix structure of DNA. The fact that the staircase is in Jerome’s house yet Vincent is the only one who is able to use represents Vincent ‘using’ Jeromes DNA. The staircase is a link to the roots of the film, which are embedded in DNA and Eugenics and allows the viewer to make links within the text.