American Realm and Social Realism (Film)

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  • Topic: Actor, Akira Kurosawa, Seven Samurai
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  • Published : April 24, 2011
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American Realism or “Social Realism” is a post World War II genre. American Realism captures the idea of real life situations in real situations and settings. Prior to World War II, films mostly featured those of fantasy, or what some would even refer to as reserved.

An example that’s introduced in part of this realism is Freudian Psychology, which allows the viewer to think about sex without showing the actual act. Another aspect of realism is using real amateur actors and real locations within the film. As if real context isn’t enough, mirroring the changing social, ethnic and gender differences in America further helped show realism in this genre of film. One major element of Social Realism is the development of themes, which is the opposite of “Hays Office Production Code.”

The film, “The Best Years of Our Lives” fits this genre for many reasons. Right from the beginning of the film, we recognize that Fred first sees how much things have changed since he was deployed when attempting to find a flight home. After this, the sailor Homer is introduced with a hook in place of a hand, and shown throughout the film as trying to cope with his handicap. Speaking of Homer, he is an amateur actor who the film industry doesn’t hear much from after this film.

Another example of this film fitting the genre of realism is Fred not being able to find work because he has no qualifications based on what he specialized in the military. Al on the other hand was asked back to his work, but received a talking to after providing a loan to a soldier although this soldier didn’t have the credentials that he would normally require.

“The Best Years of Our Lives” differs from Italian neo-realism types of films, mainly because there is a happy ending. Neo realism films are often told from a strange point of view, have plots based on poverty and war, are shot amid devastated ruins of defeated Italy, and seldom have a happy ending.

There are many changes occurring in the years...
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