While You Were Sleeping
While You Were Sleeping While You Were Sleeping, composed by Randy Edelman and directed by Jon Turteltaub, includes good examples of a leitmotif. A leitmotif is a reoccurring piece of music associated with a specific character, event, theme, or mood. The two leitmotifs used in this movie are “Lucy’s Theme”, which is a slow, romantic, or even sad piece of music. The “Family Theme”, has a faster beat that goes back and forth and is quirky. The main characters in While You Were Sleeping are Lucy, Peter, Jack, and the family. Lucy works at the train station, and sees Peter every day.
On Christmas day, Lucy is asked to work. While working, Peter puts his token in to take the train and tells Lucy ‘Merry Christmas’. Soon, he is pushed in the train tracks. Lucy jumps on the tracks and saves his life. When Peter is taken to the hospital, Lucy goes to check on him and Peter’s family shows up to the hospital to find him in a coma. A nurse tells the family that Lucy is Peter’s fiancee, and shocks the family. Lucy goes along with it because she is worried about Peter’s grandma, who has a heart condition. After seeing the family at the hospital, they invite Lucy to their Christmas.
When Lucy arrives at the house, she realizes that she enjoys being part of the Callaghan family and she loves them. The next morning, Lucy meets Peter’s brother Jack. After spending time with each other, Jack and Lucy fall in love. Soon, Peter wakes up and doesn’t recognize Lucy. The family, still believing the Lucy and Peter are engaged, thinks that Peter has amnesia. Peter re-proposes to Lucy, believing that he really is in love with her. The wedding is at the hospital, when Lucy shows up, she looks flustered and nervous.
As Peter and Lucy are getting married, Lucy objects. She begins to tell the whole family about what happened and that she really loves Jack. Sometime later, as Lucy collects tokens from passengers at the train station, Jack places an engagement ring in the token tray of her booth. With the entire Callaghan family watching, he walks into her booth and proposes to her. Jack and Lucy leave on the CTA train, and go to their honeymoon in Florence, Italy, which is where Lucy has always talked about going to with her father before he passed away.
The title of the movie While You Were Sleeping was taken from Lucy’s explanation to Peter of how she fell in love with Jack, “while you were sleeping. ” The first example of a leitmotif is the “Family Theme”. The music used in these themes is a faster beat that goes back and forth, the music is quirky and funny. The first scene to use this music is when the entire family has arrived at the hospital to see Peter. A nurse misunderstands when Lucy is trying to visit Peter at the hospital and she thinks that Lucy is Peter’s fiancee.
The nurse tells the doctor that Lucy is engaged to Peter leaving Peter’s family shocked. The family also learns that Lucy saved Peter’s life. Lucy wants to tell the family the truth but she can’t bring herself to. Another scene that uses the “Family Theme” is after Peter wakes up. The family and Lucy are surrounding Peter’s hospital bed. As he goes around the room he sees everyone, but doesn’t recognize Lucy. The family doesn’t think it’s suspicious, because they think that Peter has amnesia.
The last scene to use this piece of music is when Lucy and Peter are getting married at the hospital, Lucy tells the family that she objects to the marriage because she doesn’t love Peter, she loves Jack. Lucy explains everything that happened to the family and apologizes, saying that she just fell in love with the Callaghan family. The common themes in these scenes all include the family and Lucy in an awkward situation. The second leitmotif used in While You Were Sleeping is referred to as “Lucy’s Theme”. The music is a slow, romantic, or sad piece of music.
The first scene using this music is when Lucy is talking to Peter while he is in a coma, talking about her life, love, and how she never meant to get him into the mess that they’re in. The next scene using “Lucy’s Theme” is when Lucy and Peter are out walking at night. Lucy gets to talking about her father and how they wanted to go to Florence, Italy, and travel the world. The last scene to use “Lucy’s Theme” was when Jack and the family went to the train station where Lucy works, and Jack puts an engagement ring in the token tray. He walks into the booth and proposes to her in front of the whole Callaghan family.
The common themes in these scenes all include a sentimental moment between two people. In conclusion, “Family Theme” and “Lucy’s Theme” are examples of leitmotifs because they are a reoccurring piece of music that is used more than once and is associated with a specific character, event, theme, or mood. In While You Were Sleeping, the music provided continuity between scenes with Lucy and the family. The music also established mood with the different scenes, whether it was a sentimental moment between Lucy and Jack, or a funny moment between the Callaghan family.