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The Changing Representation of Women in Films

Changing Representation of Women in Films

The perception of women in the films has been changing in the last century, possibly because of the changing lifestyles, economy, and the homes. The female characters grow on little and big screens, and this has made the thinking about women to grow too. The American mainstream cinema, an enterprise dependent on genres and formulas, is at times mind-blowing revert on issues related to girls and females (Kaplan 23). Occasionally, when the female rules the box office, a greater percentage of their on-screen sisters are just left off the picture or sidelined. However, this situation seems to be changing, and the misrepresentation of women in the films is gradually reducing, this is evident in some of the movies.

Some years back, some percentage of the actresses had a measure of power in the Hollywood films, but many of them were represented as bratty sisters, sexpots, or dutiful sisters, and therefore were cast aside. The most interesting situations were defined by sexuality or hypersexuality. An example of this situation is that of 1962 when Lolita, Dolores Haze, was a character or purely pubescent object that satisfied her stepfather’s lust in the Nabokov novel. Similarly, the same year Scout Finch became another object of moral instruction by her father in the movie To Kill a Mockingbird. However, a year later The Feminine Mystique, by Betty Friedan rocked the world and extended to become the most-selling warning of the second wave of feminism.

Ever since a lot has been changing: tomboys and nymphets are still depicted, just as much as funny, scary, brainy, and tough girls. The representation of girlhood in the films is gradually changing, sometimes different series of identities, inclusive of bold revisions of brave new heroines, and those of age-old archetypes. The faces of girls and women remains monochromatic (Hanson 31). The women have always suffered from the thin sets media representation, in which they are linked to domestic situations serving as mothers or homemakers. And if not, as sex objects, serving to titillate and entertain the male character. More examples of other powerhouses and pixies changing the representation of women in the movies are discussed below.

Taking a look at the Hunger Games movie, Katniss Everdeen returns as a relaxed, focused, and so capable, with her eyes to shoot an arrow, to perform the task in front of her such that it becomes easy to lose sight of how revolutionary she has become. Not only in the miserable, dysfunctional fictional universe she inhabits, in which she is being radicalized by the iniquity of the supporting society and the Hunger Games cruelty. Taking a look in the world of entertainment, Katniss can be seen as a transformative figure, in which she is a lone warrior whose personal struggles for dignity and survival are combined to a bigger fight of justice. In the movie land, Katniss is not alone and thus faces competition from a larger population that outnumbers her. Most recently, some of the movies brought to seen depict women as capable of throwing a punch, running like the wind, landing a kick, and as persons who are more than pneumatic eye candy.

Movies also embrace young ghouls and freaks, like the teenage werewolves and other kids of the Damned, and most recently the young adult, thereby helping to pump fresh hot blood into the movie world. The horror sort of movies tends to fit the young body to the perfection, upon removal of the nightmare parts, both bodies churning with violent passions, strange liquids, and seemingly terrifying changes (Clover 65). Having a boyfriend who is a monster sounds potentially metaphoric, but it can also be argued that it is quite difficult for a white girl to be in love with a black guy than it would be falling in love a super-white vampire, according to Twilight movie. Some of the unease are even more apparent in the naming Disney, in which the title Rapunzel was changed to Tangled. This is thought to be because of the 2010 article in The Los Angeles Times, in which boys were not pleased with a movie considering the princess in the title. Conversely, in some movies, people strive to a see a good princess with an ear-worming song, for instance in the billion dollar film called Frozen. However, critics debated if the movie was a continuation of the slow-moving change or repackaged stereotypes that were initiated with the introduction of minority princess.

Though the representation of women remains non-proportional on the screen, behind the cameras, and in speech, they are in the films. Females make up a higher population of the movie audience than men and movies led by the women have a stronger investment return as compared to films led by males. Conversely, when we go to movies, female characters rarely emerge as leads except for the women’s film, and in some cases when they lead, it is not them that do much of the talking (Mendible 12). According to researchers, for every one woman who speaks, around three male characters are speaking. Moreover, some persons also argue that representation of women is not intentional (Mendible 26). When women are not seen or even heard in social places and public, their absence is considered normal, and nobody seems to care.

The death of a sexually appealing woman has also been used as one of the most poetic topics in the movie world. For instance, the movie, Love Story, is based on a beautiful 25-year old lady who died. The nexus of mortality and romance is given a new life by teenage melodramas that explore the link between death and love from serious and brave teenage girls. This is evident from the 2014 summer movies of “The Fault in Our Stars” and “If I Stay”, both of which are drawn from female best sellers. Chloe Moretz and Shailene Woodley in “If I Stay” and “The Fault in Our Stars” respectively, play as adolescents who are artistically minded and whose first love experiences are shadowed by death. The characters are however more enduring than tragic. They prove the females as capable of juggling their lovers with other ambitions and dreams, of suffering the adverse sides of love and loss with humor and discipline. The characteristics they display, despite being disrupted by forces of calamity and love, are of kindness, responsibility, and common sense. When the specter of an accident and fatal illness are removed, real romantic girls are displayed (Hanson 51). A vivid example of this type is in “The Spectacular Now,” in which Ms. Woodley became a heroine after she was almost sidelined as a wallflower or a nerd.

In conclusion, it can be argued that women have become much stronger, considering their first roles, but are still viewed through the lens as objects to satisfy male sexuality and are crafted to attract to men as much as they would females. An example of this is the alteration of Lisbeth Salander to Girl with the Dragon Tatoo. Through the eyes of the original author, Lisbeth is portrayed as a solitary and strong woman who has been universally mistreated by people around her, a woman with pictorial memories that captures all the terrible things she has experienced. On the other hand, the eyes of the US screenwriter sees Lisbeth as a female made tough, sexy, and always belligerent. For these reasons, one can easily argue that people are not entirely ready for a woman who doesn’t a partner to be whole.

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