Uploaded by Belinda Macri

Billy Elliot - Act Two: Midpoint analysis

Act Two: Midpoint - Clash of Cultures.
1. Debbie has a childhood crush on Billy which in some ways has led her to road block
Billy’s ability to attend the Ballet Audition and therefore leave Durham. In addition
Debbie has shown some jealousy towards the attention her Mother gives to Billy,
therefore hindering further attention he would receive.
2. Film techniques that highlight the following;
a. Xenophobia - ​Tony’s language towards Mrs Wilkinson highlights his
Xenophobic attitude as he says “Who the F*ck are you?” This aggressive
attitude continues throughout the scene with close up shots of his continually
reddening face.
b. Homophobia - ​Tony’s language and use of derogatory terms such as “poof”
and “twat” highlight his disgust for homosexual people.
c. Hegemonic Masculinity - ​Tony perpetuates the masculine standards that
are expected of society in his brash and aggressive manner, the shots of him
being in clear view at an eye level throughout this scene. His power when
contrasted with Billy’s frame being cut by the door he is hiding behind. In
addition with his ownership of the scenario by forcing Billy and Mrs Wilkinson
into situations that they did not choose to be in.
d. Misogynism / chauvism - ​Tony highlights his chauvanistic nature as he
questions Mrs Wilkinson’s “qualifications'' belittling her capabilities. Daldry
has chosen to show her reactions and highlight her strength contrasting with
what was expected of her. (Consider Mrs Wilkinson’s costuming).
e. Socio-economic status - ​Tony’s language here highlights the
socio-economic divide as he calls her a “Middle-class cow”, however her
response reinforces the divide with her response of “Sanctimonious little shit”
perpetuating her higher education through the use of language. Additionally
the mise-en-scene of the kitchen highlights further the status of the Elliots
being cluttered and messy.
3. Within this scene Jackie Elliot takes a backseat, and literally a seat, as Tony stands
above him taking, literally, the higher position dominating the scene. Jackie views the
situation and has chosen to remain still and consider the scenario that he is in.
4. Symbolically, Daldry has chosen to place Billy on the table, in the middle of the
scene. This figuratively places his best wishes at the center of the argument. Tony is
advocating for his social position/acceptance within society while Mrs Wilkinson is
advocating for his personal achievement and happiness, as the camera pans back
and forth between them continually showing Billy’s legs between them.
5. The high angle POV shots of Jackie, Mrs Wilkinson and Tony highlight the three
paths Billy could take, each of them wishing for something different for Billy. The fast
camera movements between these shots further convey Billy’s confusion as the
viewer has trouble following the scene enforcing the confusion upon them.
6. The musical montage during the argument between Mrs Wilkinson and Tony, with
Billy moving back and forth, and up and down highlights with confusion between
these two people and their paths for him. Additionally we are shown his anger and
frustration with his dance movements which highlights his love and reliance on dance
as a method to release tension.
7. The transition into winter highlights the time and development of Billy that has passed
as he enters the hardships of “winter” or his turbulent teenage years.