The Graduate

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 12th grade October 2001

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Music is an important part of every film. Even before there were "talking pictures" the filmmakers used music as background noise to help tell the story. With or without words music can be so powerful that it increases the intensity of the film immensely. Can you imagine Fantasia without all of its classical scores? There are many theories about music in film today. While some believe it adds a lot to film others think that music should never be secondary to images. I believe that the two go hand in hand equally to bring the best of the audio and visual worlds together. Especially now that lyrics have come into play. The words of a song can bring so much more emotion to a scene than dialogue can in certain cases. I have found this amazingly true in The Graduate. Simon and Garfunkel take the concept of music in film to a new level by having the movie explained in their lyrics.

To me, "Sound of Silence" becomes the subconscious Ben Braddock. The words of the song delve into his inner self to try to describe his thought and feelings. This paper will interpret the lyrics of "Sounds of Silence" in accordance with The Graduate. This is important because by explicating the lyrics the depth of the film becomes more dynamic. Hello darkness, my old friend I've come to talk with you again Because a vision softly creeping Left its seeds while I was sleeping And the vision that was planted in my brain Still remains Within the sound of silence The song begins with the outer layer of Ben's mind and steadily moves inward as he begins to understand himself better. In the beginning he comes home after graduating from college with an intense fear of the future...



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