Film as Literature
28 Aug. 2014
Film and American Ideology
You walk out of the movie theatres feeling accomplished that the movie you just watched showed exactly what you were picturing in your head moments before entering the movie. Films throughout time reflect what kind of values we as a society have but also create fantasized solutions to fix everyday problems. In movies gender roles are constantly reinforced, giving the message that men are more powerful than woman. Additionally, combat or war films seem to bring up feelings of patriotism and pride for America. Genre films give the audience a sense of satisfaction when an expectation regarding what is “supposed to happen” happens. War films reveal many patriotic beliefs, ideologies and also demonstrate that woman and men have different expectations, reinforcing a shared cultural message.
In films women are depicted as objects, not able to function without male dominance; viewed as sexual beings. In “The Bechdel Test” the author argues that “Unfortunately, these women are not independent characters in their own right, but designed to interact with and support the males around them,” illustrating how women are shown in films as weak, they must be with a man or around men in order to be happy. In movies a woman’s happiness revolves around a man this reflects on American Ideologies and our society’s beliefs. Male-dominant films can reveal that a woman and a man cannot be friends “women are simply the sexual reward for manly men,” claims the author of “The Hollywood Sign,” showing how women are dehumanized viewed as sexual trophies or eye candy in the film and real world. Woman are not friends but sexual objects that are taught to please the male character as depicted in the centuries most famous films. The film “Silence of the Lambs” further shows how gender roles are distorted and objectified in the film world.
In the essay “Silencing of the Feminine” Lynn Dornink,...
Cited: “The Bechdel Test and Why Hollywood is a Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World.” metro.co.uk. Web. 18 July 2013
“Film and Ideology.” WSU.edu.15 Apr. 2014. Web. 13 Aug. 2014
“The Hollywood Sign: The Culture of American Film.” Essays of Film: A Critical Analysis. New York: Greentree Press, 2010. Print.
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