In class we were introduced to the various parts of a story, which we’re meant to explore by analysing a movie. Our group chose to look at Fifth Element.
Half of the movie takes place on a futuristic Earth (although the intro of the movie starts out in 1914), while the rest of it flicks through outer space or on space ships.
There are a lot of characters within the movie that lend themselves the the narrative and progression of the plot. The most important ones are:
- Korben Dallas
- Father Vito Cornelius
- Ruby Rhod
- The Mangalores
The central plot would depend on the character; for the good guys, they’re attempting to deliver Leeloo safely back to the Egyptian temple so she can fulfill her destiny, while the bad guys are attempting to kidnap her and the rest of the elements. Leeloo needs to stop the great evil in space, Korben is propelled by a good conscience, the Father and David will do what Leeloo needs from them, while Ruby Rhod gets dragged along for the ride.
There is regular conflict between Korben’s group and Zorg, the Mangalores, and the great evil. There also ends up being conflict between Zorg, the Mangalores, and the great evil.
The end of the movie depicts a happy ending, where the group have stopped all the antagonists (Zorg, Mangalores, and the great evil). Korben and Leeloo end up together, Cornelius and David have served their religious purpose, and the world is safe once again.
Point of View
There isn’t really one point of view, but rather an omniscient look at the story. The narrative flips between seeing what the various characters are up to, both the good and bad guys, and there’s no narrator throughout the movie.
A lot of people tout that the theme is true love, although to me that sounds really sappy. I prefer to look at the movie from Leeloo’s mind: what’s the use of saving human life when you can see what humans do with it? Instead, it’s how to better humanity and recognise what’s worth fighting for in the world, such as love, friendship, and humanity.
My Own Attempt
After we finished all of this, Tony asked us to come up with a character design based on our own ideas for a setting, plot, and theme. I was having trouble coming up with a good idea, so I went to an idea generator. Here were a couple of gems it came up with:
- During an invasion, a chain-smoking cat burglar finds a jewel with a theme of treachery.
- During the day, an explorer has to find a replacement with a theme of finding oneself.
- During the night, a cowboy stumbles across a time machine with a theme of adventure.
I think I really liked the last one, just because I could picture a cowboy stumbling on the TARDIS in the middle of a Nevada-like desert setting. So I attempted something like that with my tried and true piece-meal tactic (taking real world photos and tracing over with loose outlines) in Photoshop. I don’t think it turned out too badly, either.