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Essay on E. T The Extraterrestrial: Movie Analysis

Communication is a systemic process in which people interact with and through symbols to create and interpret meanings. In other words, communication is a way for humans to exchange information. Communication can take place in many ways, some of which are verbal or nonverbal, as well through symbols. When communication occurs there is always a sender and a receiver, often times there is feedback between both parties and it always occurs through a channel. For this film analysis paper, I choose a scene from the movie E. T the extraterrestrial. E. T the extraterrestrial is a 1982 science fiction movie.

The movie commences with the extraterrestrial E. T and his comrades collecting plant specimens, at this time government agent’s show to the scene and the extraterrestrials flee in response but leave E. T behind. E. T hides in Elliot’s shed, and is soon discover by Elliot, but when Elliot tries to tell his parents they do not believe him. Elliot lures E. T into his room and soon forms a psychic connection with E. T making everything that E. T feels be felt by Elliot. Soon after, E. T starts to die and so does Elliot with him, which is when Elliot parent’s become aware of E. T and involve the government.

The government captures E. T to examine him, at this time the psychic connection between E. T and Elliot is broken and E. T fakes death. E. T comes to live when he’s alone with Elliot, at this time both of them escape to get E. T to a spaceship that has come to his rescue. They are successful and E. T is able to return home. I choose the movie E. T the extraterrestrial, because E. T is foreign to planet earth and the English language. This means that before E. T learned English, he had to communicate through different ways that are nonconventional. Analyzing a scene from this movie will make the paper unique and interesting.

I choose the scene where E. T tells Elliot, Michael and Gertie (Elliot’s siblings) where he is from. The scene starts with Michael, Elliot’s brother letting Gertie Elliot’s sister and their dog enter the room. Michael exclaims “C’mon, hurry up! ” as they enter the room. Gertie comes bearing food for E. T. Elliot and Michael are carrying a discussion of what E. T could possibly be. Gertie exchanges a few words with E. T such as “This is for you” and makes a few statements directed to the group such as “Is he a pig? Cause he sure eats like one”.

We can hear Gertie talking in the background, based on what she is saying, it seems as if she is having a conversation with E. T, although E. T does not seem to be paying attention to her or possible does not know that she is speaking to him. Some of the things Gertie says are ‘We could make faces… and make them mean or happy… ” Michael and Elliot begging a conversation with E. T, they point to a globe and proceed to tell E. T “We are here. Where are you from? ” E. T seems to have no understanding of what they are saying, but does understand the hand signals pointing to earth and in return he points outside of the window, indicating that he is not from earth but from outer space.

Little Gertie does not understand what E. T is trying to say by pointing outside and exclaims “I don’t like his feet”, Elliot replies by saying “Shut up, you little twerp. He’s trying to tell us something”. Elliot pulls out a book that has a picture of space and the planets on the solar system, he points to the globe and the picture of the earth and says home. E. T points outside and to the book while mumbling words. At this point all the children are looking at E. T with surprise faces as they realize E. T is from outer space. Then E. T grabs a few balls of play dough that are laying on the table, and places them on top of the planets shown in the picture.

The kids ask each other what is happening, and what is he doing as they stand at ooze watching E. T levitate the balls of play dough and make them revolve around the play dough sun. I choose this scene, because it contains many of the concepts we have talked about in class. In this scene, the communication takes form of a small group communication were four people are sharing ideas that are verbal and non-verbal. Communication occurs in a transactional model where we have sources and receivers that deliver messages to the parties involved.

When one party speaks they usually receive feedback such as when Elliot asks E. T where he was from and E. T provided feedback by pointing. The channels of the communication are vocal and visual. They are vocal when someone in the group speaks and they are visual when one of them makes a gesture or when E. T communicates trough hand signals. In the conversation, there are a few noises the impeded the message from being understood correctly. These noises are physical noises which are made by Gertie interrupting the group, and physiological noises that are created by E. T’s lack of knowledge of the English language.

The effects of this interaction were knowledge gain by the children about E. T which was intellectual knowledge. Another effect of the interaction was an affective effect, that was acquire when the children learned about E. T’s abilities, this changed the way they felt about E. T and what they believed he was. The purpose of the communication was to learn about E. T’s origin. The conversation contain ambiguity, because of the signals E. T was making could have different meanings to different people. This happen when E. T pointed out of the window, and while Michael and Elliot knew that E. T was trying to tell them something, Gertie ignored the signal, and only looked at his feet.

Elliot and Michael are competent listeners to each other and to E. T. While Gertie is not a competent listener, because she fails to listen to others or analyses visual ques. This might be due to the fact that she is a young girl that has a limited understanding of communication. I also believe that Gertie discloses information that is pointless to the listeners making her be perceive as a meaningless person, and making her peers ignore in return. Most of the listeners in the dialogue are active listeners that ask questions and paraphrase the speakers meaning, except for Gertie that is an inactive listener hat does not ask questions pertaining to the subject at hand, and does not seem to be listing or paying attention to the speakers.

In conclusion, the scene where are you from? From the movie E. T the extraterrestrial contains many communication concepts as would any of our day to day interactions with other humans. The scene where are you from? Had a meaning and successfully deliver a message to the listeners. The conversation was mixed with verbal and nonverbal messages as well as competent and incompetent listeners. The conversation contain every step of the transactional process of communication and successfully deliver a message.

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