Midterm paper on "Middle of Nowhere" film, 2012 (USA)

Order now

Middle of nowhere


In the film Middle of Nowhere examine Ruby’s relationships to the other characters (Derek, mother, sister, nephew, lover, lawyer, Derek’s previous girlfriend) and how they support the shift in Ruby's perspective?

Use instances from the film that illustrate the importance of the supporting characters.

The paper must be coherently organized, following clear arguments, with an introduction, main body and conclusion.

Analyze the expressivity of gestures, camera movements, frame compositions, and tempo. 


Midterm paper on Middle of Nowhere, film by Ava du Vernay from 2012 (USA)

In the film “Middle of Nowhere” director Ava DuVernay pictures several kinds of destructive relationships between people in the close environment of the female protagonist. Tragedy in Ruby’s life story is a lack of support from close people during the challenge period of her life and relationships with her husband. Status-quo that depicted in the movie is the presentations of everyday life events that common for many modern families. However, the major accent of the film creators is the importance of a triumph of Ruby’s personal traits that help her to overcome the situation. The sound and visual effects of the movie help the creators to emphasize the emotions and feelings of the protagonist and create the image of a woman struggling against the obstacles of modern life.

A protagonist Ruby has “everything complicated” type of relationships with her husband Derek. Since he was put into the jail for eight years, the distance between them is increasing during the film. At first sight, it was obvious that he has not any kind of tight bond to her staying close to Ruby with emotions very moderate and pushing Ruby away. However, he does not refuse from his wife, but wants better life for her. He wants to have a possibility to take care of Ruby and her life (Ava DuVernay). He looks at Ruby like at someone he doesn’t deserve to be with and continues to repeat: “Have your full life” (Ava DuVernay). He gave up on himself and sabotaging all her efforts as well.

Ruby instead, does not see his inner torments at first. She carries on being a perfect wife, a little bit too obsessed with relationships with her husband. For instance, she revives positive memories about him constantly before going to sleep, or identifies herself with him, straightly saying during one of their meetings: “You are me…” (Ava DuVernay). Derek is an essential part of her life. Ruby continues to protect Derek, even when she meets his previous girlfriend, the mother of Derek’s daughter. This scene was aimed to remind Ruby that Derek has a dark side since he left the mother with a child and didn’t pay the aliments. But, Ruby keeps to be blind to the facts and speaks on behalf of Derek. However, with the plot development her eyes become open on her relationships with Derek. Other characters of the film help Ruby with to see her life from different point of view. Another man appears on her way as the opportunity to fulfill the emptiness of her life. The future lover is a broken soul that also seeks love and tenderness. So, two souls meet and slowly seek toward each other. Derek’s betrayal breaks Ruby’s heart and pushes her to start intimate relations with Brian. 

Ruby’s sister is also making attempts to revive Ruby. She brings positive vibes in Ruby’s life, as well as support, and goes through presented traumatic experience with her. They are not only sisters but friends as well. Still, Rosie doesn’t miss a moment to remind Ruby that keeping relationships with Derek is a dead end. However, sister is the only character that pushes Ruby out of her “situation” gently. In contrast, her mother is blaming Ruby’s marriage. According to Ruth, her daughter was giving promises but brings only disappointment (Ava DuVernay). Ignoring all blames, the main heroine tries to get along with her mother, patiently listening to critique. Still, Ruth oppresses Ruby to hysteria once, and it happens in the moment of Ruby’s transformation (Ava DuVernay). The tension between mother and daughters is a red line that goes through the whole movie, and while Rosie doesn’t even want Ruth to stay with her grandson, Ruby simply feels guilty because of unrealized expectations. Sharp, interrupted speeches and trembling voices together with abrupt movements are the means to express this tension. 

The most kind and patient relationships Ruby has with her little nephew. She takes care of him as if he were her own son (Ava DuVernay). Nickie knows what happens in his aunt’s life, but since he is a child, he doesn’t have a habit to blaming others. His character depicts contrast between the unkind world of adults and quintessence of life itself. So when with him, Ruby forgets about her problems and enjoys the presence. The scenes with Nickie are not very bright and happy. However, they are full of sunlight that is absent in most of other film scenes. 

The movie creators pay great attention to the music in the film, visual and sound effects. They help for the viewers to feel the emotions and understand the feelings of the movie characters. The memories of the protagonist are full of romantic events related to her husband. Soft music supports these events and allows the film director to present past event as pure feelings between two people in love. The usage of close camera shots to present these scenes helps to show the true emotions between two people. On the other hand, the musical support emphasizes the sadness of the woman apart from her beloved husband. The music patterns are different when Ruby is working, travelling with her sister or looking for Brian. Music supports Ruby after her quarrel with her mother. With the help of such differentiation, the creators divide the life of the protagonist into life with husband full of romantic emotions and sadness, and life in the society with its energy and vivid actions. Her coming to the party is the first step of the woman to “normal life” far from troubles related to jail. The attention of the camera to the dance with Brian is the way to present the beginning of intimate relations between two people. 

The scene with Ruby and Brian staying in the arms of each other reveals unhealed wounds of two characters and also their need in support of a close person, who understands everything. The camera starts working from distance and moves closer to catch the details of face expression and trying to see the soul of the character. The close expositions of lips trembling, eyes and face expressions help to present uncertain feelings of the woman about suddenly appeared relationships. The kiss in the darkness of the night is a kind of secret or mystery intentionally left far from the light of camera. The pauses in the speech filled with music show Ruby’s hesitation. The background music is similar to the one supporting memories about Derek. It becomes the symbol of the opportunity for Ruby to start new relationships.

The work of the camera often focuses on the eyes of protagonist. The play of the actress in such moments is especially important. And the play of Edwina Findley Dickerson is perfect here. She uses psychological and physical perception of her character by the viewers and addresses to a conscious awareness of the senses of the audience. Her movements, speech and face expressions are in the attention of the camera most part of the movie. She uses appropriate tone of speech with pauses and body language to emphasize the feelings of her character in every scene. Musical support and some visual effects lead to the explosion of emotions and evoke empathy to the characters. 

The movie is a discovering inner world of a female protagonist. She overcomes obstacles on the way to the spouse life of her dream. At the same time, by interacting with supporting characters, Ruby reveals her personal traits one by one, surprising the viewer. The usage of music became the major way to emphasize the emotions of the characters. Besides, the attention to the face and eyes expression of the protagonist and to the way she moves and behaves helps to create the image of woman in hard life obstacles.

Buy term paper help from PerfectEssaysOnline.com and impress your teacher!

Type of assignment Title of your paper
Writer level
Number of pages Timeframe Currency Total price
First order discount 15%

  • Sophia

    I did not come across your company the first time I was searching the web for writing assistance. I used to get a very dreadful experience and did not even know that any other company can be trusted. My classmate ordered some papers from you and offered to register on your website. With all cautions, I purchased a paper and was deeply surprised. Thank you, dear writer, for helping me with academic papers!

Rely on Our Paper Writing Help!

Would you like to make your academic life easier? PerfectEssaysOnline.com offers you a perfect chance to buy an essay online and let our writers take care of your academic achievements!

Order now