Analyse how the beginning and ending of a A Beautiful Mind shows an important change in John throughout the film.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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One particular way in which a change is shown in John Nash from the start to the end is through cinematography.  The start of the film shows John seeking to manipulate light from the sun into different designs.  The camera work follows the glass John uses to diffuse the light, the light, and the different designs that emerge.  There is division in this.  Despite the fact that John seems to be focused upon it, he still seems torn and not content.  The cinematography that shifts between the light, the objects, and John's gaze helps to bring this out.  In contrast, the ending is more focused.  The camera focuses John on how he has made "peace" with the schizophrenia that is still within him.  He is no longer shown through cinematography as divide and fragmented in what he believes and in how he carries himself.  Rather, he is shown to be focused on Alicia and the life he now has discovered.  The cinematography is not shifting as much and is more focused on his point of view.  This is to represent how he has changed from the start of the film to its end. The start of the film is one in which Nash is divided and not focused on anything in terms of meaning in his life. Even the manner of speech that is delivered reflects this change.  At the start of the film, Nash speaks in more incoherent terms and is less assured of himself. By the end of the film, he is more articulate and confident in who he is and in what his life consists.  The technique of acting helps to illuminate this change.  Both techniques help to convey that by the end of the film Nash has gained perspective of that which is important in his life and is no longer subsumed with that he cannot control.  The more focused idea of cinematography and change in acting deliverty are ways in which this change is evident.

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