Witness… As simple as the title itself, the movie is about the witnessing of a murder by a young boy. With the boy belonging to the Amish culture, the director Peter Weir explores to very different cultures that are present in the movie. Throughout the movie Weir incorporates two mismatched cultures and explores them comparing them with one and other. With the Amish hard working, simple, happy lives compared to the drama of crime and corruption in the big city life. We see two dominant themes which are crime and corruption being linked and the clash of cultures.
Corruption throughout the film would have to be the most dominant of themes in the movie. With the police being corrupt through to the core the sence of trust and belief in authority is faint. We are first introduced to the idea of corruption in the police station. This begins when Samuel identifies the killer from a picture in a trophy cabinet of the police station which ironically happens to be an officer himself. The slow panning shot of the picture in the trophy cabinet shows the face of the killer officer and helps build suspense in a climatic moment. Aided with the music in the background, the idea of a major crime bust and disbelief is created when they find out the murderer is one of their own. Without using words Weird demonstrates the strong based storyline of corruption with this viewing and with the close up showing John Books eye opening facial expression demonstrating the lack of unity between the police community.
In the scene of the shoot out in the protagonist’s car park we see the corrupt officer Mcphee trying to kill John Book the leading investigator in the bathroom murder. To go along with the act of turning on one of his fellow officers the setting of the car park and lighting on the set is used to set the mood. It creates suspense along with mystery in the scene. With the symbolic viewing of John Book standing under the White lights in the car park being contrasted with...