In ‘The Notebook’, the plot follows a main theme of a classic love triangle between two central characters, Noah and Ally, learning about how they meet, the relation they have during their teenage years despite coming from two very different sections of society, and how their lives unfold after a tough break-up due to their prejudiced views of Ally’s upper-class parents on Noah’s working-class lifestyle. The love triangle is formed due to Ally’s engagement to a rich war hero named Lon who appears to have a similar upper-class upbringing to Ally, whom she helped recover from injuries obtained in World War Two.
What I particularly liked about this film was how they used mise-en-scene (costume, props, make up etc.), lighting, setting, sound and cinematography (known as the five micro-elements in film) to convey how Ally’s personality differs with her upper-class parents and fiance Lon and Noah. This is shown very well in one particular scene when Ally speaks to Lon on the telephone in a hotel room and then visits Noah the next day.
When Ally is on the phone to Lon, she wears very formal, dark coloured clothing, perhaps representing the formal and mature relationship she has with Lon. I also noticed that Ally’s clothing is a very similar colour to the furniture in Lon’s office. This gives the impression that Ally may be viewed as being Lon’s property in the upper-class society they live in. However, when with Noah, Ally wears very light colours. Light colours often connote freedom, which could echo the freedom she has in her relationship with Noah.
The lighting and setting also show the differences between the two relationships Ally has. The lighting in the hotel room where Ally speaks to Lon is from a lamp. This artificial light may reflect the artificial relationship that Ally and Lon have, whereas the lighting when she is with Noah is all natural sunlight, showing that Ally appears to have a more natural relationship with Noah. This is supported by the fact that there is physical distance between Ally and Lon due to the fact they have to talk on the telephone, mirroring the idea that they could be emotionally distant in their relationship also. When Ally and Noah are together, they sit in a small boat. This confined space creates physical closeness between the pair, reflecting the emotional closeness they appear to have.
Not only does this film have great links between it’s theme of a love triangle between Ally, Noah and Lon and the micro-elements of film, but also provides an emotional and interesting plot that is easy to follow, making The Notebook one of my favourite films!