The film ‘Sorted’ was made following the death of an 18-year-old girl, who allegedly died after taking Ecstasy. The death is an incredibly emotive issue. The anger and uncertainty is put through in the film. The film puts forward that Ecstasy was completely to blame for her death. The film was created to make children aware of the dangers of ecstasy. However, if the film did this effectively is debatable.
“Sorted” shows how Leah Betts died after just taking one Ecstasy tablet and how it can kill you. The video creates an emotive environment from the start, and this continues throughout the film. One way the filmmakers do this is by playing “wonderwall” by Osasis in the background. This is important because it adds to the emotional connection the audience gets with Leah Betts and her family.
The filmmakers continue to try and make an emotional connection with the audience by the family describing Leah Betts. Having a connection, makes the audience feel involved in Leah Betts life, which intern makes the audience sympathise for Leah’s parents for their loss.
“A…. mature young lady,” was one of the comments said by Leah’s family and friends during which they described Leah Betts as if she was a flawless person. This is done to show the audience what they should think of Leah Betts. This is important because this makes the audience feel as if they knew Leah personally. The audience are then shown what Leah’s friends are going through at school without Leah. The filmmakers focus on the empty stool where once Leah was seated, this symbolises the loss of “a special person.”
During the film there is no mention of the word “Ecstasy.” But there was a mention of the drug during the reconstruction of Leah’s 18th birthday. However the drug was referred to as “the drug” and “tablets.” “We had done it a couple times before…” was the comment made by Leah Betts friend on the drug. But there is no mention on the number of times they had taken Ecstasy. I think the filmmakers did not show the number of times they had taken the drug because they wanted to get across that just one ecstasy tablet can kill.
The film then shows an innocent child’s party, this is shown by Coke Cola being poured and crisps being placed in a bowl. The filmmakers choose not to show the 18th birthday party because by showing a child’s party we view Leah as an innocent child. Also the film puts across that Leah’s parents were very safety conscious and took every procedure to ensure the party was safe. Their “main concern was…youngsters getting drunk,” therefore they intended the party to run smoothly.
When the parents start to recount the tragedy there are lots of mention of “pain”. For example “…that scream of pain…” I think what the filmmakers are trying to do is scare the audience from taking ecstasy. I don’t think scaring people from taking drugs is effective because it is only a short-term solution.
The doctor and policeman in the film try and create a sense of knowledge and authority. But this is poorly done because the information given is not precise and uses lots of “could” and “can.” This leaves the audience more confused about Leah’s death and leaves them with unanswered questions.
Nicolas Saunders is a published drug user. He was disgusted the way the media portrayed ecstasy, he wrote his own article. In his article “The Leah Betts story” he writes about many things not even mentioned in the film. For example he writes that Leah “had smoked cannabis.” In the film there is no mention of any other drugs. This means that the filmmakers had chosen to leave important information out which could mean that other pieces of information might still be unknown.
“Press the panic button” is another article. I believe this article is much better at educating young people about the drug ecstasy then “sorted.” I think that “sorted” has a very extreme one-sided opinion which is that drugs kill, where as “Press the panic button” gives both sides of the effects of Ecstasy. It gives the readers information on why people take ecstasy for example “to dance all night” but also stating the dangers.
In conclusion I think the film “sorted” was not very good at educating young people about the dangers of ecstasy. The film concentrates more on trying to make an emotional connection with the audience rather then educate the dangers of ecstasy. The film lacks facts, which makes me feel that the film would be better suited for younger audience rather then teenagers. However I think the film is not trying to educate the audience about ecstasy but trying to make you say no to drugs by showing you what happened to Leah.