Winners and Losers

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Winners and Losers

In the movie, “Little Miss Sunshine” the theme of winners and losers is expressed during the movie through each characters personality traits. The opening scene of the movie illustrates an atypical family at dinner to introduce the characters, and their personal traits to the viewers. The first character to be introduced in the film is Olive, a beauty pageant obsessed seven-year-old girl. Following Olive is Richard and Sheryl. They are polar opposites; where Sheryl is constantly working to provide for the family, and Richard is a motivational speaker obsessed with his nine step program to become a “winner.” Dwayne, the young teen, of the family is shown training to enter flight school, and grandpa is introduced to the viewers while doing drugs. Lastly, Frank is presented with no expression on his face whatsoever after an attempted suicide. The theme of winners and losers in “Little Miss Sunshine” is portrayed throughout the movie via each character.

The first time the theme is expressed in the movie is the opening scene. During the opening scene we see Olive, “pudgy, bespectacled seven-year-old” young girl standing in front of the TV watching Miss America, and imitating the pageant winners wave (Bucanan). The way Olive stares at the TV with such focus implies that she would love to be in Miss America someday. As the camera gives the viewer a full view of Olive she rewinds the pageant over and over so that she can continue to watch it. Even by watching the first scene it foreshadows what will come later in the movie. Olive with mismatched clothing and giant glasses, is completely opposite from the perfectly groomed elegant women on TV. The viewers can see by looking at Olive she is completely inexperienced when it comes to beauty pageants, but can also see how motivated Olive is to become apart of that world.

A voice over leads into the next scene of a man giving a motivational speech, to a half empty classroom, on nine steps to becoming...
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