Recap of the significance of colour in Pleasantville

When David and Jennifer get trapped within the traditional 1950s-style television show Pleasantville, the film changes from colour to black-and-white. Later as we have discussed, coloured portions begin to appear in shots, representing freedom and individual thought. We understand  that in our time that experiencing and experiencing emotions is OK and that the black-and-white aspects of the shots represent more conformist values of ages past, when people’s personal emotions were kept hidden. Later in Pleasantville, some characters change to colour, while more conservative, closed-minded characters remain in black and white. These differences eventually causes a rift between colourful characters and black and white ones. An example is David, who has looked towards conservative values and has been black and white for most of the film, suddenly turns coloured after defending Betty, his Pleasantville mother from bullies. It is important to note the specific significance of colour (or lack of it) and evaluate the significance of colour as a language of its own that is used to create meaning and characterisation in the film.

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