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A Theme of Time in "Run Lola Run" and "The Red Tree"

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A Theme Of Time in “Run Lola Run” and “The Red Tree”

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Time is the most significant and important theme in both texts which is constantly reoccurring. In the initial opening scene of Run Lola Run, Tykwer incorporates an animated Lola running towards a large clock, with the use of a diegetic sound of a clock ticking. This is done in order for the audience to become aware of the importance of time in this film and introduces this sense of a time limit. Hence, the close upshot of the pendulum grand-father clock slowly swimming back and forth, panning upward to the fast ticking clock in the opening credits, helps aid the importance of time. The reoccurring motif of clocks and this time limit of twenty minutes in order to save Manni’s life, generates this sense of drama and excitement, also reminding the audience of Lola’s race against time. This idea is further portrayed with the use of non-diegetic music, since the film is supposed to depict a video game where there are multiple chances to “play the level’’, it seems appropriate to use a fast-paced soundtrack, since there is a constant fast-paced action. The music creates this feeling of playing a video game as well as a feeling of adrenaline pumping action for the audience, giving a great deal of control over the pacing and action of the film. Another technique used by Tykwer is the use of a split screen image which constantly occurs throughout the film, showing multiple scenes between Lola running, Manni being in a different location and the town clock ticking. This technique is used to engage the audience into wondering what is going to happen next and allow them to wonder if she will make in in her twenty-minute time limit.

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Correspondingly this idea of time is present in the picture book ‘The Red Tree’ with the reoccurring motif of the red leaf. At the start of the picture book, the persona doesn’t show any consideration to the red lead, ignoring it. However, it is evident that she starts to recognize the red leaf towards the end of the book, an evident smile appearing on her face. This is symbolic to the reader as it expresses that in one’s life timing is everything and that waiting and patience is key to one’s happiness, in order for a good outcome to occur to one’s life. Furthermore, the repetition of ‘and wait’ symbolizes that the persona is just waiting for something good to finally occur making the reader sympathize with the little girl. This is further supported with the use of the color, having a low saturation which makes it look uninviting and lifeless, led by the vectors to the girls face, making her facial expression the focal point in majority of the photos.

All the above techniques used in both the film 'Run Lola Run' and the picture book 'The Red Tree' both convey the idea of time through the use of distinctively visual techniques to allow the responder to reflect and enhance their understandings of the world and not underestimate the value of time.

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