Chocolat The Weight Of Matters

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Set in a French colony in South Africa, Chocolat conjures up the magic of Africa. Claire Denis captures the quietness of Africa where almost nothing is said but the weight of matters is always there. The film visually rather than verbally demonstrates the tension and power struggles between France’s family and the servants and guests. Therefore, Chocolat wonderfully utilizes visual effects to play out the unspoken desiring between two of the protagonists, Protee and Aimee. The film starts by showing a woman named France who revisits her childhood and shows viewers the story through her eyes. What is central to the story is that her mother and her servant, Protee feel a strong, silent, forbidden attraction to each other. When France’s father goes away on business, there is both silence and tension in the house. Protee and Aimee are drawn to each other but cannot have each other because of the racism in society. Aimee holds power over Protee as she is his master. Aimee feels she must lower herself to approach Protee sexually. She crouches down on the floor like a child and touches his leg. Protee crouches down to her before forcibly making her stand. Protee has all the moral authority, as his refusal to take actions on Aimee when she reaches for him is strong and…show more content…
This is conveyed through long shots spanning the sparse African landscape. These shots are marked by the absence of a musical soundtrack. The extended shots of a silent landscape are analogous to the silence shared by Protee and France. The silence creates the space for consideration of displaced identity, the result of colonialism. Although Protee is seemingly without voice, except in exchanges with France, he is the most potently expressed character in the film. His power remains after the end of the narrative. Protee has a carefully maintained but brittle facade that follows the colonial code of conduct that is in terms of his measured emotions and

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