- Free Essays, Term Papers & Book Notes

The Tracker How Has the Text Positioned the Reader (viewer) to Have a Particular Attitude Towards a Theme?

Page 1 of 4

The Tracker

How has the text positioned the reader (viewer) to have a particular attitude towards a theme?

Theme: Aboriginals treatment in the 1920s

Attitude: sympathetic response towards the tracker and the way that his people were treated in the 1920s.


“The Tracker” filmed in 2002 by Rolf de Her, filmed in the outback of Australia, was based on the treatment of Aboriginals in the 1920’s. It tells the story of three officers (The Fanatic, The Veteran and The Follower) and an Aboriginal tracker chasing a fugitive accused of murder. Rolf de Her brings to the film the conflicting issues of racism towards aboriginals during a dark chapter in Australian history and integrates the underlying message of “all men chose the path they walk”. The use of film techniques including camera angles and multi-media to represent symbolism and explore these themes and cause the viewer to feel sympathy and remorse towards the Aboriginals and those negatively affected by the upper, “white” social class.  

Paragraph 1:

“The Tracker” features Aboriginal paintings by Aboriginal artist Peter Coad. The unique film technique of replacing violet scenes with paintings that are as equally as moving, brings the film to a whole another level and creates a ligature of the Dream Time stories. The use of paintings creates a sense the film isn’t just a film but like an accurate account of the horrible variations of the tale which indeed occurred in the past.

Around the twenty-minute mark of the film, the three officers mounted and armed, ride into the indigenous camp. The Aboriginals are caught and chained together so The Fanatic can begin his interrogation of them. The lyrics of Archie Roach on the soundtrack drown out the actual sound of the interrogation, but the mood intensifies as The Fanatic and The Follower appear to enjoy the power they wield over their helpless Aboriginal captives. The tension continues to build and the interrogation becomes increasingly physical, as close-ups of The Tracker’s face become more frequent. The image of The Fanatic’s revolver pointed down a captive’s mouth is the cue for the last close-up of The Tracker’s pained face before a hail of gunfire. The rapid sequence of paintings, combined with their further deployment later in the film, shocks the audience into recognising that the paintings are describing more than just a singular occurrence. The depiction in the scene foregrounds aspects of Australia’s past that have been continuously swept under the rug of mainstream culture and its history.

Paragraph 2:

The films themes of racism and social class are also shown through the use of camera angles and are also used to show the border between civilised and savage that are blurred in “the Tracker”. The fanatic is often full of the ideas that he is superior over Aboriginals because he is ‘white’ and murders innocent people relentlessly. The fanatics maddening tone of superiority above aboriginals encourages the reader to dislike him and support the tracker and the follower’s sudden courageous act of defiance. You first see this change when The Follower questioned if The Tracker knew what he was doing. The Tracker then shows him the process by pointing out a turned over rock and the Follower then feels contrite for questioning his technique. As the Follower gets back onto his horse, the cameras points up to The Tracker as he smiles. This technique is used to emphasis to the viewer that the power shift can happen in the society as was seen in Australia in 1967 when Aboriginals got the right to vote.

Download as (for upgraded members)  txt (4.6 Kb)   pdf (31.6 Kb)   docx (8.7 Kb)  
Continue for 3 more pages »