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Billy Eliott - Film Set in an English Town of Everington

Essay by   •  November 12, 2018  •  Book/Movie Report  •  770 Words (4 Pages)  •  763 Views

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Billy Elliot is a film set in an English town of Everington, England during the 1985 mining strikes. The film depicts a young boy facing the challenge of overcoming traditional gender stereotypes to pursue his love for ballet. Billy faces extreme adversity from his family and community that hold traditional values and beliefs.

  1. Ballet class scene –

Opens with Billy outside the boxing hall repetitively pushing the door, in the ring he is hesitant to fight


Represents the beginning of his transition – beginning to progress into new world

Door represents a possible transition in regards to a world he is expected to be a part of

Diegetic sound of ballet music over the boxing scene shows impact music has on Billy and creates juxtaposition between expectations and desires 

Billy joins ballet class – low angle and close up shots create juxtaposition between the ballet/boxing shoes (represents alienation)

This scene shows Billy’s own stereotypical views being challenged as he finds out ballet appeals to him

  1. Dad finds out scene –

Billy’s father Jackie discovers Billy has been taking ballet classes. Altercation follows and his father makes comments alluding to ideas about the sexuality and masculinity regarding boys who dance.


This scene highlights the challenges of transition

Converting shots create juxtaposition between the ballet dances and miners – creates stark contrast of societies expectations and self-expression

Billy hiding ballet shoes shows hesitance to express himself

Close up shot of father highlights his anger

Cage represents barrier between the father’s world and Billy’s

Father opens cage but never steps in the room representing his rejection of Billy’s transition

Shows the fathers traditional beliefs and values being challenged by Billy’s newfound passion for dance

  1. Final scene –

Billy’s family comes to the city to watch Billy perform in a performance of Swan Lake


Outcomes of transition

Father transition into new world – never been to city before, feels out of place

Fathers attendance to performance expresses his acceptance of Billy’s transition and shows a shift in his own traditional values/beliefs

Billy preparing to go on stage – low shots and close ups show his physical transition

Diegetic sound builds suspense

Performance of Swan Lake holds personal meaning and represents his transition

The father’s emotions expresses pride and acceptance of his transition

Shot of Billy leaping onto stage represents final leap into new world and highlights his successful transition


This poem explores the aspects of taking risk and embracing the results of transitioning despite the uncertainties and adversity that may be faced. This poem challenges the view that people are afraid of something new and unknown, which relates to Billy’s father and his rejection of his son’s passions for dance due to straying from societal norms. Lack of rhyme, rhythm and conventional structure give the poem a conversational tone.



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