Essay Title: 

On Golden Pond

March 28, 2016 | Author: | Posted in aging, health and medicine


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November 24 , 2006

On Golden Pond

Communication Climate

In the Film

On Golden Pond

Climate in movies can be developed in a variety of ways , depending on the theme , characters , and genre . The movie On Golden Pond has an award winning cast . Two of the actors are father and daughter in real life Henry and Jane Fonda . The task of creating a communication climate is centered on an important contemporary theme : the challenges of aging bonds between [banner_entry_middle]

male and female , man and child . These s are all issues that theatre-goers can relate to . The communication climate thus , becomes a central element story development and creating pace while keeping the viewer ‘s interest peaked

The film opens with breath-taking view of New England landscape panning in and out of the quiet , peaceful lake . This reinforces the emotional attitude of the film from the beginning . Enter crotchety old Norman Thayer and soft-spoken , yet affirming wife , Ethel . The film-maker , well-aware of the highly publicized problems revolving around Henry Fonda and his son and daughter , uses this to add impact to the film ‘s emotional sentiment

Norman and Ethel arrive to their remote vacation home without anyone in sight . Ethel ‘s hands are full and she cannot open the door . She needs Norman ‘s help and knocks on the door

Someone ‘s at the door ‘ says Norman , not even looking up from his book

It ‘s me you old poop ‘ Ethel says

This brief dialogue speaks volumes about who is the enabler in this marriage . Norman ‘s age and life-long frustrations are clouding his memory and his ability to keep up with life

Norman expresses his concerns over death in subtle ways . He vents his frustration on loved ones by being irritable , short-tempered , and using quick-witted sarcasm . It ‘s obvious that sarcasm has been a life-long sentiment in the Thayer household . The sarcasm between Norman and his daughter Chelsea has built walls that have silenced their ability to express true feelings for one another . Thus , Norman uses discomforting messages for the majority of the film . Here ‘s an example of Norman ‘s sarcasm regarding his daughter ‘s new love

She ‘s fallen in love with a dentist ‘ says Ethel , full of compassion

Good God ! They ‘ll be staring at our teeth all the time ‘ is Norman ‘s response . The humor of the scene makes its mark while viewers are led to question Norman ‘s love and respect for his daughter . Does he , on a subconscious level , regret his lifetime of treating Chelsea unfairly

The film , unfortunately , treats the stereotypical grumpy old man with simplicity , never reaching into the heart of the matter . In fact , the only recognition between Chelsea and Norman comes in the closing scene of the film where they embrace as Chelsea says , Goodbye Norman .er dad ‘ This verbal message does hold impact but the true reconciliation between father and daughter remains unknown

Ethel , in contrast to Norman ‘s character , uses confirming messages entirely through the film . Her deep love for Norman is shown by her willingness and unconditional acceptance of Norman ‘s less than joyous persona . Norman creates more humor in a scene that normally would lead people to show a little respect for , an elderly woman who also lived on Golden Pond died recently . Norman doesn ‘t even bat an eye as he informs the mailman of this news and says , one of the lesbians expired More disconfirming messages by Norman

The film maker shows Norman with his guard down in a scene where he gets lost hunting for strawberries near the house . He runs back until he bumps into their property . Norman waits for the mailman to leave before stating his angst to Ethel . It is one of the rare times , maybe the only time , that Norman uses confirming messages

(I had to ) Come running back to see your pretty face . I could feel safe . I was still me

You ‘re my knight in shining armor ‘ Ethel responds as she held his face gently in her hands . You ‘re gonna get back up on that horse and I ‘ll be right behind you . And away we ‘re gonna go , go , go

Ethel , once again , uses her confirming voice to heal

Billy Ray Jr , upon meeting Norman shows respect . It ‘s Norman ‘s 80th birthday celebration . Billy Ray Jr . tries to make a connection . I just had a birthday two weeks ago

Norman says , Hmm . We ‘re practically twins

Billy Ray Sr . also shows respect for Norman , using confirming messages

Love your house ‘ says Billy Ray Sr

Thank you . It ‘s not for sale ‘ retorts Norman

Their dialogue continues as Norman uses more disconfirming messages and Billy Ray Sr . uses confirming messages . Norman ? You mind if I call you Norman

I believe you just did ‘ says Norman coolly

In closing , communication is what creates the climate of the film Dialogue and body language are what keep the story moving along at a jovial clip . It is a wonderful film with a message about how challenging life can be for individuals when communication has little honesty . When people put up fronts and refuse to share their feelings it leads to disjointed relationships and people wind up feeling hurt This pain can cause further distress on a person ‘s life . The only solution is to share feelings and believe in the power that results when a cohesive family bond develops


Live Entertainment . On Golden Pond , 1981


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