Drop Dead Fred
Issues of Abuse and Victimization
Drop Dead Fred is a movie that explores emotional abuse of a girl named Elizabeth and how she copes with the abuse by escaping reality and creating an imaginary friend name Fred. This movie is sensitive to the character of Elizabeth in showing her growth throughout the movie and by using Fred to provide comfort in times of stress, companionship when she was lonely, someone to boss around when she felt powerless, and someone to blame for the mud pies in the dining room. Most important, Fred is a tool to help Elizabeth make sense of the adult world. Fred was truly a cry for help when she was a child and equally as an adult. As an adult Elizabeth uses Fred as therapy to work through her past, free her inner child, and move forward. The emotional abuse places her as population at as a young girl and leads her to a troubled adulthood due to the lack of attachment, warmth, understanding and love by her mother. The film follows Elizabeth, a woman who has been controlled by her mother in childhood, and by her husband Charles in adulthood. After losing her money, car, job and marriage, Elizabeth is ordered by her mother to return to the family home. To help her cope with her controlling mother and achieve happiness again, Elizabeth’s childhood imaginary friend Drop Dead Fred reappears. Following a series of conflicts with Fred, Elizabeth accompanies him into a dream world where she is able, with his help, to overcome her fears of her mother, and her husband, and of being alone. No longer in need of Fred, Elizabeth returns to the real world without him, and resolves her conflicts with Charles and her mother to lead a normal, independent life.
This film shows victimization in two aspects of Elizabeth’s life with her husband and her Mother. The film first introduces Charles, who from the outset directly controls Elizabeth’s perceptions of him and their relationship. For example, Charles asserts that it was...
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