Boubacar Djigo is a writer and tenth-grader at BHSEC, Cleveland.
Anthony Marra states, “You are the hero of your own story even when you become the villain of someone else’s story” and this quotation sheds light onto Julie Taymor’s film The Tempest, based on Shakespeare’s play. Prospera was banned from her birthplace because of power. Prospera was away on a journey for knowledge while handing her dukedom to her brother who betrayed her for power. While Prospera was expelled from Milan, she held a grudge against her people and wanted revenge. Her rage caused destruction that injured others. Although there was anger deep inside of her she had a piece of calmness within her. Her calmness helped her forgive the people that did wrong to her. While rage is the most obvious in the film, the director uses sound and camera work to show that calmness deserves attention too because when you are angry inside and you don’t find that calmness within you there will be destruction. Calmness helps you observe and see what’s right from wrong that itself gives you the power to forgive.
In the scene where we first meet Prospera, sound is a major part of her character. The particular reason for this circumstance is that when Prospera was screaming it was all the anger she had built inside coming out. She had been suffering from betrayal and she just kept the anger in and was never going to forgive her brother and his entourage because of the betrayal they had shown her. Inside the ship, people were screaming and talking fast because they were scared of what would happen to them if they did not move fast. This scene demonstrates that when you are frightened you move fast because you do not know what is going to happen. Even though you are scared of the danger you are in you would not know it was your fault that it all happened because of something you did. The water was crashing inside the ship onto the people and this chaos was all caused by Prospera’s sorcery. The rough waves were like Prospera’s anger crashing the people on board to make them try and remember what they did. When Prospera was screaming her eyes were wide open as if they were telling us to leave her alone; she is already in so much pain. Since anger comes in many forms it is not your mouth that only tells us but your whole body can tell us about one’s anger without you saying anything.
In the scene, the camera work shows us how when you are calm you need not fear the danger in front of you. When the ship crew were praying, they were not scared of what was happening because it is like they were getting connected to God to protect them; that is why they were calm. While the ship was getting destroyed the surroundings looked peaceful as if nothing was happening. The calm camera work demonstrates that even though destruction happens you can always find peace and calmness if you are not caught in the middle of things. When Miranda was talking to her mother Prospera, she calms Prospera when she was angry. This calming camera work shows how people around you can affect you too because if you are surrounded by calm people you will be just like them. After all, there is no negative energy around you. To sum up, if you have a clear mind and are calm you will likely survive the danger you are in.
Therefore, the power to forgive comes deep from the heart and not just because you think it’s right to do so. After many years of pain and suffering, Prospera finds peace and not only did she change her life but she changed the lives of the people surrounding him. In a better future, I would have wanted Prospera to sit and think through everything that was going on at the moment and see how she could overcome it or how she could make a better future for herself and her daughter. Maybe she could have just let the ship go and send a message to Milan using sorcery to see if his family had a change of heart. I do think that sometimes violence is the answer but that is only if peace did not work. Deep inside Prospera has a soft spot because she made her daughter’s lover do hard duties so she knows he will take care of her. Also, I think if Prospera was never betrayed by her brother, there would have been a world of peace and knowledge where you would have the freedom to do anything your heart desires. I believe it was going to be a time where they would learn more about themselves and who they truly are and what they can accomplish.