V for Vendetta directed by James McTeigue, contains very powerful scenes of which being the domino scene and the Final fight scene. The domino scene is significant to the film as it has many meanings to it. V had set up many dominos at his own house they are set up in a sequence in the pattern of a ‘V’, representing the idea of V destroying the whole building of Parliament. The domino scene portrays the concept of the power of one and how one person can have a chain effect. The director carefully uses montage and juxtaposition as cinematography techniques to show the viewers different views on V by the public and the chaos he has caused with his ‘5th of November Scheme’. The final fight scene is a very powerful scene as it shows how one person can change the world with V all by himself with the determination he shows he managed to fight off his enemies. This scene represents the power of one, depicting what one person can do from an idea or belief; it shows the power that one can have if they believe in themselves. The fight scene happens just before the bombing of the Parliament Building and the scene occurs just outside Parliament in an abandoned underground station, just before V’s mastermind takes Place. James McTeigue uses a combination of cinematography techniques such as camera shots, lighting and colour to truly portray the final battle that V partakes in before his death.
At the start of the Domino scene, it shows V placing the first domino of multiple that would result in a black and red V with a circle around it, V’s trademark. The first example of juxtaposition occurs with a shot of parcel delivery truck driving, containing boxes full of the Guy Fawkes masks that V wears. The shot then cuts to a man wearing the mask robbing a shop, before switching to the government officials discussing the topic one of them says “this is exactly what he wants” before the shot cuts back to the man in the shop who says “anarchy in the UK”. This is juxtaposition as these two events are unrelated but by putting them side by side it makes it feel as if the robber is ending the sentence of the government official being that chaos and rebellion is going to be the future on London as V is strategically in front of the government in overrunning it. Another use of juxtaposition is when a government official speaks of a previous trip, he says “it was as if i could see the whole thing, one long chain of events” the shot then cuts to V with multiple dominoes’s layed out, showing that one thing has led to another and being a physical representation of the long chain of events that had just been mentioned in the narrative. The close up shots of the dominoes shows us that each domino has an importance and that they are linked together. “It was like a perfect pattern laid out in front of me, and i realised that we are all part of it” is a quotation taken from the montage. The quote is used as voice over of a shot of Vs domino’s showing juxtaposition between the narrative and the dominos. There is no direct link between the two but we start to see the dominos as the ‘perfect pattern’ and we make the link that every domino must fall for them to work linking it to the “we are all part of it” piece of the quotation. Next quote used by a government official states “someone will do something stupid” as the shot changes to a police officer shoots a young girl in a V mask. This allows the viewers to see the stupid act he just predicted being the shooting of an innocent young girl. “and then” is the last dialogue used before V is seen flicking over the dominos, this makes us feel that V is in control and has the power. The shots then switch between riots in the city and Vs dominos falling. This is the most impressive use of juxtaposition as the two scenes are completely unrelated yet we start to see them as representative of each other. The dominos falling, being representative of the order falling and anarchy taking over.
The final fight scene starts off with a wide shot showing us the setting of where the fight will arise, this being a dark broken down station in the London underground. This shot also shows the protagonist, V and the government who are surrounding him with weapons. The camera then cuts to a close-up shot of the antagonist of the film to show who the main that is in the fight. The frame then cuts to an over the shoulder shot from Mr Creedy and his men’s view singling out V who stands alone in this fight. This shot allows the viewers to be in their shoes. The camera quickly cuts to a close up of a soldier looking confident with the odds of winning the fight of one man against eight seeming high in their favour. McTeigue uses the sequence of shots that move from an eye-level camera position which may suggest that this upcoming struggle could lean either way, to that of V or the government. Next, it then cuts to a long shot which caught at the scene of V with two offices on either side of him. The officers then move towards him with drawn weapons. The medium close up shot shows V lighted in the silhouettes of the officers implying that V has something over the men and that he might win the battle. This lighting was created by using a back lighting effect putting light behind V making hin look like a very powerful figure. Then the camera cuts to a full shot of V beginning to unsheathe his knives which then quickly switches to a variety of close up/medium of the officers drawing their guns with a slightly shaky camera technique with the directors intentions to put the audience in the shoes of V experiencing the situation of an upcoming fatal fight, and to emphasize the chaos and tension with movement and unsteadiness. It then cuts to a long shot from behind of V as if the audience is facing the officers about to face off and fight against them. Reverse shots are exchanged between V and the chief of police as tension builds between the two rivals, leaving the audience questioning who will start this battle. In the next high angle shot from behind V, we mise-en-scene where everyone is seen in the shot. We see V as the one in power as he is slightly higher than the surrounding men, also this shit gives us the idea that V is severely outnumbered. In the final fight scene, a dark and gloomy lighting effect is used. This effect helps us predict that something is going to happen. The lighting makes the area feel it is separated from the rest of the world where nobody can see or hear what is going to happen. Dark and dim lighting makes the scene seem very dramatic and mysterious creating suspense for the viewers. The darkness allows contrast to occur easily such as making the red in V’s costume. Red is the colour of blood, revenge and determination. All of these relates significantly to this final fight. Slow motion technique is used by McTeigue during the attack on V during the final fight scene, By doing this he has been able to show us how important this scene is and make it stand out to viewers and emphasise the battle. This technique was used in a way that makes his character seem to stand above all the rest. The slow motion in the fight scene redirects the viewer’s attention to important details that would otherwise go unnoticed such as the ways V kills the officers to enable him to single Mr Cready to say V’s his final words of “Beneath this mask, there is more than flesh. Beneath this mask, there is an idea, Mr Creedy. And ideas are bulletproof” before breaking his neck killing him.
McTeigue precisely incorporates multiple cinematography techniques to make V for vendetta such a powerful movie that allows viewers to take messages of one person is more powerful take the first action then multiple people sitting back and watching their idea unveil. The use of juxtaposition and montage in the domino scene makes it very powerful as it creates suspense and is shows us the turning point in where V has more control over the government then what they have over themselves. The final fight scene uses sophisticated camera shots and lighting techniques to show the viewers how V is seen as a powerful figure at the “good guy” in the scene. V for Vendetta is a very strong film brought together through multiple editing and the use of cinamotography tecniques helping the viewers understand the idea of control.