Contribute a lot to the overall quality of a film. The realistic characters and lives that actors create are shaped by their ability to become a living representation of a character created by film writers. In the movie Doubt, Sister Aloysius and Father Flynn, played by Meryl Steep and Philip Hoffman, do an excellent job of bringing their characters to life through their use of representational body language and dialogue. The theme of this film is to express that doubt is a quality that every human possesses.
The theme also teaches us how we should respond to doubt by not allowing it to control are actions and hope towards what we believe. Body language plays a very important role in acting, as it allows the actors and actresses to portray and express feelings.
As Sister Aloysius returns from her walk with Mrs. Miller, Father Flynn confronts the sister in her office. In this scene, the audience can feel the tension between the characters through their animated actions.
Throughout the entire movie Sister Aloysius has prided herself in being lady-like and civil. However, in this scene she allows the audience to see a side of her that has not been seen before. One part in particular is when she grabs and holds the crucifix to face of Father Flynn. Historically, in the catholic church a Crucifix was used to ward off evil. Thus, whenever Sister Aloysius holds the crucifix up to the face of Father Flynn she is communicating something to him and the audience through her body language.
She never states verbally; however, through her body language and gestures she communicates her idea that she believes that Father Flynn is evil.
Due to her frustration, she closes her hand around the crucifix in a closed fist and holds it up her Father Flynn’s face. All of these small body gestures help the audience feel what the character is feeling through realistic body gestures that we all have expressed throughout our own lives. Another important aspect of acting is the dialogue. It is the actors job to make the conversation seem natural and unscripted. It is one of the main avenues that characters are able to connect with their audience. In Doubt there are many extraordinary examples of great dialogue. One in particular is the verbal exchange between Father Flynn and Sister Aloysius as he asks her if she has ever done anything wrong. The dialogue instantly changed the vibe of the scene. It goes from a fighting scene to a moment of contemplation. Up to this point in the movie, the majority of audience would have sided with Sister Aloysius.
This scene does more than convey a dialogue, it forces the audience to contemplate their own lives and their own actions. The essence of a good movie is its ability to make its audience think and grow, and the dialogue of the Doubt does this beautifully. Due to the extraordinary acting of Meryl Steep and Philip Hoffman, it is easy to forget that Sister Aloysius and Father Flynn are fictional characters brought to life through these actors. Nevertheless, as we watch and focus on the representational body language and dialogue of the characters we will be able to analysis the feelings and thoughts of the characters on a much deeper level than otherwise would be possible.