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Saltburn Totally Nails The Details Of British University Culture

Saltburn is a fine example of representing university cultures in the UK

Saltburn is one of the best examples of representing university culture in the UK during the 2000s. The movie is written and directed by Emerald Fennell. The story is of Oliver Quick (Barry Keoghan) as he attends Oxford University in 2006.

The working-class young man meets Felix Catton (Jacob Elordi) and decides to spend his summer with him at his family’s estate, and develops an obsession with him.

The majority of the movie takes place at the Catton family home. However, the earlier scenes focus on the ins and outs of student life. It is worth noting that each part of the UK constitutes its norms and culture.

The atmosphere of British University Culture

Also, Oxford University is considered to be one of the highest-quality institutes in the country, with the student experience. A brilliant, nostalgic atmosphere for the British university culture is built up in Saltburn.

The supporting character, Farleigh Start (Archie Madekwe), got a brilliant introduction, immediately showing exactly who his character was within seconds of appearing on-screen.

The international student was Felix’s cousin, although they were far too different. Farleigh’s first scene in Saltburn is when he arrives for a tutoring session with Oliver, which too twenty minutes late, and immediately the cultural differences become clear.

Differences in the education system

Farleigh’s and Oliver’s approach to education is different. He is quick to pull apart Oliver’s essay, rather than completing the work that had been assigned to him.

A broad, diverse, student body, is represented in the UK with Farleigh being a great personification of this as he is someone who breaks up the status quo, without any care.

Attention to detail

Saltburn’s soundtrack is purely accurate to the period. Songs such as “Murder on the Dancefloor” by Sophie Ellis-Bextor and “Mr. Brightside” by The Killers are played along with plenty of novelty music tracks.

During the Christmas party scene, “Have A Cheeky Christmas” by The Cheeky Girls is played. This song was considered to be cheesy, so it is quite a surprise that Saltburn didn’t include more of this.

It is very standard in the UK for people to visit the same pub or bar on the regular, and the Saltburn characters were no different. While many British students don’t have the same financial stability as the likes of Farleigh or Felix, drinking culture is still a big part of the student experience. Because of this, they will likely flock toward somewhere that’s either cheap, close by, or both.

The word “mate” is very common in the UK throughout the movie, Oliver and Felix used the term multiple times. It creates a sense of irony as their friendship is built on lies and Oliver’s deception.

Many characters in Saltburn were reading Harry Potter. Felix, Farleigh, and Venetia (Alison Oliver) can all be seen reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows during the summers. The attention to detail in Saltburn is just brilliant.

The Oxford University experience

The Oxford University experience is rather different than the other UK universities. Oxford and Cambridge University have jumped between being rated the first and second-best universities in the UK. It is good to note that both typically see a large percentage of their student bodies coming from backgrounds of money, power, and even royalty.

Saltburn brilliantly showed what the student experience was like specifically for Oxford students. There were even scenes showing students leaving their exams wearing red carnations, an Oxford tradition.

Saltburn depicts the divide in the class system also.

When Farleigh and Oliver interact in the buildup to the summer ball, where the American comments on the fact that Oliver’s black tie attire is rented.

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