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Family Conflict in Billy Elliot

            In the film "Billy Elliot," the experiences of moving into the world of dance changes Billy's maturity and confidence. Initially, he is restricted by the narrow-minded and myopic society. His father's identity as a miner and ex-champion boxer reverberates the fact that he holds very traditional male values. Billy experiences conflict as he is torn between his affection for dancing shown in the lyrics in the opening scene "I danced myself right out of the womb" and the expectations of his father. Daldry employs cross-cutting between Billy's dancing lessons and with scenes of his family at the picket line. Billy's dancing lessons with the girls are filled with bright natural lighting to reflect purity and hope, whilst the darker colors at the picket line reflect the miner's hopelessness and desperation. This demonstrates that his world of dancing is a source of liberation for the societal reality he lives in. The song "Town called Malice" by the Jam is played in Billy's main dance sequence. It perfectly captures the anger and frustration Billy feels after the confrontation between his new world and the old one that is continuing to hold him back. .
             Despite his interest in dancing, Billy feels out of place in the female ballet group at Durham as Daldry depicts that even he has the apprehension about the perceived roles in society "I feel like a right sissy". However, he later puckers the courage and enters the world of dancing, defying his father's words and society's expectations. When he attends one of Mrs. Wilkinson's classes, wide angle shots are used to metaphorically show his world and horizons opening up. In the final scene, the classical song "Swan lake" is used. It has a yearning quality that captures Billy's change and quest to move into the creative world - a world where he has choices. The slow motion of his leap is a testament to the achievement from escaping the world of social stereotypes and entering the world of dancing.

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