Illusionistic Film vs. Expressionistic Film
Wimbledon is a perfect example of an illusionistic film. It carries every quality,
from the sequential and easy to understand beginning to the happy ending. It contains the
perfect combination of the illusionistic camera shots and has just about everything in
common with 90% of other American films, including “Back to the Future,” our
Unlike expressionism, illusionism is easy to follow and blunt with its meaning.
There are no hidden motives or double entendres. Most of all, illusionistic film does not
confuse the audience. From the start, and especially in the beginning, the lead character,
Peter, narrates everything. You hear his voice over top of scenes; it seems as if we are
hearing him record a diary or some sort. This is solely to keep the audience in tune with
what is going on, it clears up any potential confusion. Also, Peter says a lot of things out
loud that he would normally think in his head. For example, when he is walking onto the
tennis courts in his first match, he mummers “let’s see if I can at least make this last a
little while.” Peter had no need to say this out loud because no one was around, but the
writers put this in the movie to keep the audience in tune with Peter’s persona. In
addition, even if Peter didn’t say anything, many of his thoughts were said in the
background of the movie. They were added in an echoed type voice, so the audience
knows that this is what he is thinking. Another form of this is when people in the movie
ask Peter questions strictly for the purpose of informing the audience. For example, one
friends exclaims “Do you know that this is the first top ten win you’ve had in 3 years?”
Obviously he knows this.
The movie “Wimbledon” is also very illusionistic in the fact that everything in it
is sequential. During one of his matches he hears everyone’s voices in his head telling
him to have stamina, swing thoroughly, etc. Then Peter says to himself in his head, “we
at least no one is here to see you lose.” Just then, Lizzie, the girl Peter has a crush on
screams “COME ON PETER!” Now the audience understands the purpose of her being
here and wants to see if he wins or loses.
One of the most important aspects of an illusionistic film is the happy ending.