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People and places of power, The remains of the day

Dissertation : People and places of power, The remains of the day. Recherche parmi 296 000+ dissertations

Par   •  25 Mai 2017  •  Dissertation  •  497 Mots (2 Pages)  •  826 Vues

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People and places of power

  1. The remains of the day was released in 1993 by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala. This drama was based on the novel “The Remains of the day” written by Kazuo Ishiguro in 1989.
    The two main characters are Mr. Steven, the butler of Darlington Hall (played by Anthony Hopkins) and Miss Kenton, the housekeeper of Darlington Hall (played by Emma Thompson).
    Another important character would be Lord Darlington (played by James Fox), who is the owner of Darlington Hall but who also was considered a Nazi sympathizer.
    The movie takes places in the 1950’s in post-war Britain, so obviously, the whole of Europe is shook from the events of the second world war.
  2. This movie can be rather confusing. It alternates from the time where Lord Darlington was the owner of Darlington Hall, and then to the period where Mr. Lewis has repossessed it.
    But I find that the notion of power was not only represented amongst the men of power at that time that we can find during the important conferences or dinners… It’s also shown amongst the staff. The hierarchy between one another. For example, Mr. Steven is somewhat “superior” to Miss Kenton, and Miss Kenton also has a certain amount of power on certain members of the staff.
    But this power only stretches to a certain extent. They can give orders and put them back in their place when needs be, but when it comes to personal values, their power can only reach so far. And that’s where we can see the power of family and love is shown, when Lizzy leaves with Charlie to get married (two members of the staff) or when Miss Kenton leaves to get married with Mr. Benn.
    The last aspect of power that can be seen in this movie is the power of friendship; the friendship between miss Kenton and Mr. Steven. After twenty years of not seeing one another, Miss Kenton writes to Mr. Steven to give him some news of what has happened over the course of those last twenty years. They see each other towards the end of the movie and reminisce about the old times.
  3. As explained previously, the notion of power was used amongst the staff when it came to the hierarchy.
    But one scene where power could be clearly distinguished is the one where the last dinner of a long stay of many different people of power. The people whom we hear talk each represent something different. For example, when the representative of Germany stands to make a toast about how all Germany wants is peace and that it would be benefic for everybody, where France agrees but the USA opposes by calling them all amateurs. From then on, we can somewhat distinguish different social stanzas in a way. All of them are important, rich and political people, but most of them simply agree with one another coming to conclusions that will not help whatsoever. That’s the case for everybody, except for the USA.  


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