A Comparison of the two versions of "ÃÂLord of the flies' focusing on the scene of Piggy's death In this essay I will be comparing the differences and similarities of the two film versions of "ÃÂLord of the flies' and I will be interpreting the effect the y have on an audience. The scene I will be focusing my essay on will be one of the main scenes, which change the rest of the book. In this scene Piggy is brutally murdered by Roger who pushes a great boulder on Piggy crushing him and killing him instantly. This scene carries on for almost the whole of chapter 11 as it is such an important scene full of William Golding's special describing technique, which allows readers to recognize and visualise clearly what happened. After this brutal murder no one in Jack's savage group felt any remorse, especially Roger. In the process of Piggy's murder the conch was violently smashed to pieces symbolising the collapse of civilization and order.
Chaos ruled, all except Ralph had turned into savages. After this episode, was the only time that the group as a whole intentionally wanted to kill. William Golding made this scene very tense as he makes Ralph & Jack say short insults to each other which enthrals the audience. Piggy's death also astonishes the audience as he is killed while he is making a speech about how all of them should be grouping together to survive and as he is saying this a great boulder is forced upon him showing that the group had forgotten completely about civilization and how they were meant to be behaving.
When changing the form of media from written, where the reader has to visualise the scene themselves, to a movie where everything is clarified for them the director can use many aids to help him create the reaction from an audience that he wants. In the first film one of the aspects they chose was the camera angle. They used this to show superiority between Ralph and Jack and to emphasise what they were saying. The also varied colour and lighting to change the interpretation of the characters they wanted to convey. Sound effects were also extremely useful to make the audience feel tense and to let them feel the tension between characters. Framing is another aspect used to generate tension between two characters. The camera operator used a variety of shots. These included many "ÃÂover the shoulder' shots to emphasise the clear rivalry between Ralph and Jack. As they exchanged insults and threats the camera angle changed from "ÃÂmedium shot' with the both of them to "ÃÂclose up' depending on the stage of their argument. Unfortunately the acting was very dry and unbelievable, so this spoilt the reaction from the audience. The camera angles were used very well as they had a high angle shot looking down from Jack high up on a rock down to Ralph, which clearly showed the superiority and power that Jack had over Ralph. Also a high angle shot was used to show Piggy struggling a lot lower down which showed the viewers how dependent he was on Ralph. This aspect could have been improved by having more scenes similar to this. The location has been chosen well as it is on a cliff face with a large number of loose rocks and crashing waves, which make the spectators, feel that something evil is going to happen. With the use of better lighting, this aspect to create anxiety could have been greatly improved. The makers of the film have used a beating drum for the whole scene up the moment of Piggy's death. This creates tension as the viewers can forecast what is about to happen. All of Jack's group are chanting which is very influential. This works well as it engages the audiences attention so they concentrate more on the scene, and then they can see Jack' savage group. The whole of Jack's group have painted faces, which show that they are completely disconnected from any form of any civilization. At the end, after the high angle shot on Piggy's lifeless body in the sea silence descends and then there is a close up on Jack's face. He looks worried and very shocked. Jack's reaction would confuse viewers as everyone knew that he hated Piggy.
In the 1990s film, the filmmakers start the scene with a very long shot of Piggy and Ralph walking along the lagoon to Jack's side of the island. The two of them are walking as if they are defeated, they look very upset but most importantly their acting is believable. This has a great effect on the audience as it makes them feel sorry for Piggy and Ralph as they are alone against a pack of savages who have just robbed them of their most important tool for survival on an island which has turned from a paradise to a nightmare. The use of a very long shot has a great effect on the audience as it conveys a message. When Piggy and Ralph reach Jack's shelter Roger comes out to see who has come. Here they have used a low angle shot looking up at Roger showing that he is more powerful than Piggy and Ralph. Then Jack and the other savages come down the side of the cliff angrily. They all have painted faces and are carrying spears as if they are ready to hunt again. This time they have not really relied on big close up shots to emphasise the character's words as the actors are a lot more convincing. Instantly Ralph and Jack begin to insult and threat each other. This scene in the film is a lot more violent. As times have changed so have expectations of films. Now, a little violence is usual in a film like this to entertain the viewers. The hostile behaviour in this is a lot more engaging as it is more authentic. As the two are fighting, Jack's group chant which is very influential to Jack. The chanting is very useful as it can change the audience's interpretation of the scene. After Ralph and Jack have finished fighting the group turn to see what Piggy is saying. However, instead of listening to him they laugh at him and make fun of him. We see through a high angle shot Jack's group assembling on the cliff. This shows the amount of people who have sided with Jack and are against Piggy and Ralph. This makes the viewers feel that Piggy and Ralph are fighting a lost cause, as they are so badly hated. As Piggy is making his speech the whole of Jack's group go surprisingly quiet which signals to the viewers that something horrendous is about to happen. Then the audience can see Roger forcing a great boulder down from the top of the cliff in Piggy's direction. As the boulder is tumbling towards Piggy the picture is slowed down and a "ÃÂmedium close up' shot is concentrated on Ralph shouting which at first shocks the viewers as they cannot see what has happened to Piggy so they are left in suspense and secondly it magnifies Ralph's concern for Piggy. Then silence descends which makes the audience wonder what would happen next. Then there is a close up on Ralph's face as he threatens Jack. This threat is greatly magnified by the use of the Big Close Up shot. This threat would initially amuse the audience as they can see there is clearly nothing he can do as he is grossly outnumbered.
Jack looks worried about Piggy's death. The scene ends with a long shot focusing on Ralph running away alone while having stones thrown at him by everyone else. This would make the viewers feel sorry for him as now he is all alone to face the group of savages.
I think overall, the newer film version was much better. There are many reasons for my choice. First of all I feel the newer film was much more original. It did not stick to the book as much as the first film. The violence and insults in the old film did not create much tension as they weren't very offensive. The filmmakers of the first film relied a lot more on using different framing techniques. In the newer film the camera angles were a lot more informative of the characters feelings and power. The locations for both films were chosen very well as they were on cliff faces with high crashing waves which created a sense of danger. In the earlier film the use of lighting was a lot more apparent. Both scenes had loud and clear music up to the point of Piggy's death. However, these two sets of music were completely different. In the older film there is a drum beating which creates tension, but in the newer film there is a piano playing high-pitched music which is more effective when it comes to generating tension. The costumes in the newer film were much more realistic and the spear gave the impression of real savages.