Changing Our Perspective on Life Through Revanche

In this film the director, Spielmann, tries to reach out to the audience through his film. He tries to show the audience how one’s life is connected in ways that are not typically thought of. He is showing the audience that our lives our more intertwined than we believe. To set up this idea of life being interconnected he first uses imagery. Spielmann tries to show the audience, through imagery, in the first scene shown below. Here we see the reflection and stillness of nature. This is also a reversed image that shows that Spielmann is trying to make the connection of him making the audience think about their perspective on the world. This, therefore, represents the audience’s life. Typically, we go through our normal routines uninterrupted, but as we see it can be disrupted by a hardship that may be presented. This is represented by the rock thrown into the lake that disrupts the stillness of the lake. This shows, as we mentioned in lecture, that we have the still world that is our own, but can be interrupted by the busy world that actually surrounds us. In the end of Ravanche we again see this scene reiterating that the audience needs to reevaluate their perspective on life.

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Spielmann represents how different these intertwined worlds can be from another person, but yet in the end their worlds have so much in common. This is set up through the different lives of the main characters. The audience is presented with a police officer compared to the crock, and then we are presented with the housewife compared to the prostitute. The contrast is then reiterated in the environments the two sets of characters live in. We have the crock (Alex) and prostitute (Tamara) that live in the city (shown below), and then we have the police officer (Robert) and the housewife (Susanne) living in the quiet still country (shown below). The quiet still country couple represents the quiet still lack, and the crock and prostitute represent the rock that is thrown into their life. This rock represents the robbery of the bank and the killing of the prostitute that brings both couples into each other’s worlds. This is left up to the audience to see that our own lives are all bound together by fate. We can go one day in our own lonely world, but then be thrown into someone else’s world the next day. This brings up one of the last things we talked about in lecture. Speilmann is showing his audience that we do not live in lonely worlds. This is an illusion that we have all created. If we open our eyes we can see that all of our worlds are intertwined in one way or another.

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6 responses to “Changing Our Perspective on Life Through Revanche

  1. alexfulton

    You brought up an interesting point comparing Robert and Susanne to Alex and Tamara. It is interesting that Tamara is a prostitute, which would generally be a profession judged harshly, yet Susanne is the more morally ambiguous woman. By closely examining each person, it becomes clear that our preconceived notions about people need to be reevaluated. Susanne seems to be a loving housewife who cares about Hausner, yet she cheats on her husband with little remorse. Alex is really a criminal, yet he can also seems sympathetic at times. I think this all ties back to the water image. The stillness of the water shows how everything appeared simple and black and white on the surface. The ripples show how Alex’s actions change up the audience’s perspective about each individual.

  2. michellegoto

    The idea that you mention of lives and actions being intertwined is also a theme in a couple other movies that we have watched this semester. In “Oldboy,” the saying, “Whether it be a grain of sand or a rock in water, they both sink alike,” reiterates the different meanings and effects one action can have on different people. “Dead Man Walking” also focuses on consequences as Poncelet’s hand in the murder of the two teenagers caused unhappiness in the victims’ families, his own family, a divorce, and ultimately his own death. Utilizing dramatic irony and the imagery that you included, Spielmann effectively portrays this theme of personal connections and unforeseen consequences that is widely used in film.

  3. taalib2010

    I agree completely with your implications about how Spielmann wants to elicit thoughts that our actions affect others lives as well as our own. It exemplifies that not only in film but in the real world that almost everything we do is intertwined with another persons life. This thought goes undermined and until it affects ourselves we usually pay it no mind. The director of “Revanche” does a great job of dramatizing actions that demonstrate this cycle of actions. Just as you mentioned, Spielmann commences and finishes the movie by dropping a rock into still water and the ripples start to submerge in order to portray that the rock disrupted the waters isolated world. It is interesting that you stated the director uses the rock and water imagery as his theme and focuses on this throughout the film by using the characters of Alex, Tamara, Robert and Susanna. This is unique and points out the directors creative tactics.
    Although, many directors tend to over dramatize situations in the film culture it helps evoke the thematic thoughts they want. On the contrary, Spielmann starts with his theme by grabbing the attention of the audience through visuals and keeps their attention hostage through the film from that point forward. Other movies that we have watched this year have not usually started this type of way, therefore, the way the director directs this film really makes this film unique.

  4. tylerlindley

    I agree with you as well, the rock and water imagery is deeply symbolic and it seems to definately be the driving force behind the plot of the film. Interestingly, the film’s resolution – in which Alex abandons his plot to murder Robert – can also be viewed allegorically through the rippling water imagery. When the rock is thrown into the water, the water breaks and ripples, indicating turbulence and the discomfort of change; but after time, the ripples from the rock cease, and the water returns to its tranquil state of self-sufficient balance and isolation. This return to stillness after the ripples from the rock end seems to reflect the way that Alex, after time, contemplation, and the events that occur in the film, abandons his plan for revenge and simply accepts the fact that Tamara is dead. In this way, he assimilates his new situation – living without Tamara – into his old life and “returns” to the isolation and stillness of acceptance, the turbulence caused by Tamara’s death having been satisfactorily dealt with.

  5. kyliewatt

    I like the point you brought up about the changing perspectives. IN the beginning of the film, Alex was entirely focused on revenge against Robert. However, when he has the conversation with Robert on the bench in the woods, Alex realizes that Robert is suffering from severe guilt and cannot forgive himself for what happened. When Robert says to Alex that the robber has every right to find him and shoot him, Alex’s perspective changes in this moment. He realizes that if he were to take revenge on Robert, it wouldn’t change anything, Robert is already sufferring for what he did and that becomes enough for Alex. I think that the reflection of the trees on the pond is symbolic of the inversion of perspective that Alex goes through and it’s a very artistic and meaningful portrayl of the changin perspective.

  6. srayena

    I too found your post interesting in that you noted how Spielmann juxtaposes Alex and Tamara with Robert and Susanne, which necessarily makes the audience compare and contrast these individuals. I agree with Alex Fulton about Tamara’s profession typically viewed harshly, yet when comparing her to Susanne (which the audience inevitably does), we can see how Susanne’s actions make her seem far more morally ambiguous. Tamara is portrayed as a victim who is either trapped in her chosen profession, or dd not choose such a profession in the first place and was in some way forced into it. In regards to moral ambiguity, I think this also applies to Alex and Robert. Alex is a criminal who robs a bank, yet Robert, a policeman, is essentially a murderer. Furthermore, Alex follows and contemplates taking revenge on Robert, yet never does so, instead throwing the gun into the lake. I was also under the impression that it was the gun, and NOT a rock, which caused the ripples in the lake. This seems to me to be a much more persuasive catalyst for the imagery of the ripples and ergo the theme of dualism/ the inter-connectivity of life that is central to the film.
    -Alauna Safarpour

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