Princess recues the Prince?
“Movies can and do have tremendous influence in shaping young lives in the realm of entertainment towards the ideals and objectives of normal adulthood.” Walt Disney knew he alone, individually impacted the ideals of millions of American children. Every movie his company represented and produced was met with criticism and success. After classic Disney movies such as Snow White and Cinderella were met with infuriated parents criticizing the company for displaying young females as beautiful, borderline anorexic, Caucasian and labeled necessary to find “Prince Charming.” In the early 1990’s Disney responded to this disapproval with the introduction of Pocahontas and then Mulan. Disney portrays the new princess persona through these two films to demonstrate to the audience that women now seek independence, a true female identity, and a lover: all while facing cultural adversity. Pocahontas is a progressive, rebellious, feminist friendly “princess” and Disney’s first culturally diverse anime film star. Disney illustrates Pocahontas as a woman who has to defy, and momentarily disappoint, her father in order to be true to herself. Her circumstances were similar to any American trying to discover an identity of their own. In the beginning of the movie we find out her father, Chief Powhatan, is forcing her to marry Kocoum, the tribe’s best warrior. Prior to the production of Pocahontas, Disney movies have created their princess to be oppressed by the parental figure. But in Pocahontas, she constantly challenges her father’s orders and expresses much rebellion as she creates her own identity. While the tribe and England meet to battle, Chief Powhatan holds his axe up, above his shoulder, ready to execute his prisoner, John Smith. Pocahontas throws herself on top of John, using her body as a shield as she announces to her father, “If you kill him, you’ll have to kill me too.” (Pocahontas, 1995) She says this in front of both, her tribe and the...
Cited: Mulan. Dir. Tony Bancroft. Perf. Miguel Ferrer and Harvey Fierstein. Walt Disney, 1998. Film.
Pocahontas. Dir. Mike Gabriel and Eric Goldberg. By Carl Binder, Susannah Grant, Philip LaZebnik, Irene Bedard, Judy Kuhn, Mel Gibson, and David Ogden Stiers. Buena Vista Pictures Distribution, Inc., 1995. Film.
Please join StudyMode to read the full document