Sunday, 11 March 2012

Question 2 - How does your media product represent particular social groups?

Our thriller film represents different social groups in different ways.

In terms of gender, our film is very pro-male. The only female figure in our thriller is only seen dead, with a gunshot wound. This also makes her appear as if she has a mysterious, deviant background – another negative representation of female people. The powerful figures are all male – the enigmatic figures, and the “hero” of the film, Jonathon, who is always seen in a god light - a positive representation of male people. This has intertextuality with “Once Upon a Time In America”, which I have analysed in my research of thriller films. In the opening scene of this thriller (like our thriller opening scene), a female figure is shot dead by powerful, dominant, enigmatic male figures. This is similar in some ways to our thriller – the sole, dead woman and the multiple enigmatic males who are the main source of her death. The story revolves around the powerful figures of the men and their betrayal - the plot focuses around the male figures, like our thriller. 
Eve in "Once Upon a Time in America" suffers a similar fate to the Eve in our thriller (this character was an inspiration for our characters name)
The location used is a relatively expensive, large, old-fashioned house which looks like the property of a middle-class family. This is a development of the thriller genre, as normally thrillers contain working class, dark figures. This is a change from this – the class of these people is more like the class of the people in “The Third Man”, which I also researched. Another development of the middle-class stereotype is that this family seem to have a dark, mysterious background – normally middle-class families are not portrayed in a negative light. Also, as the main character is a white, middle-class teenager, he is easy to identify with as he is very recognisable.

Furthermore, are film is dominated by only one race class - white. This is not a great representation of race, but there are many white-dominated films - for example, Psycho has little variation of colour. Also, as in Psycho, it is the woman who dies early in the film, representing Marion Crane, the female, as the weak figure. This is similar to our thriller when Eve Cody dies. The female figure dies a short way into our film as well - this further supports the fact that the plot is focused around the male figures, like in Psycho when Marion dies and the plot focuses around Norman Bates. This focus on the male characters, and comparatively insignificant female figures, is quite common among thrillers. For example, "J"'s girlfriend in "Animal Kingdom" (one of few female characters) has quite a small role and is killed by Pope (one of the many male figures).

Dark, middle-class house in England

In our thriller, Britain/England is portrayed as a dark, bleak environment. This acts a reference to the recent economical issues that the country has suffered e.g. the recession. This could show the problems for 16-25 year olds (our target audience) in contemporary Britain. Our thriller could thus show the possible result of these issues - families being corrupted. In this case, the mother could have a link to a person who lent her money, did not get it back and wants payback. The enigmatic figures could be loan sharks, which would show the current desperation for some families in Britain.

1 comment:

  1. Rather narrow and reflecting minimal to basic understanding of representation - you need to develop your points here. check out the following film site re genre films and the femme fatale etc.

    Representation of gender: You have used a traditional representation of women in thriller films in that the female is a victim and that the action will revolve around the young male character. Will you need to reference far more research to illustrate you understand the domination of male characters in film, particularly thrillers and action and scifi thrillers.
    You have mentioned Once Upon a Time in America but you need to make more of Eve's brutal murder by three corrupt police officers and that the narrative focuses on strong male characters and betrayal.

    You could also reference Marion Crane in Psycho in that she is deviant and murdered less than half way through the film. This was unprecedented at the time the film was made because Hitchcock marketed the film as being about a young woman on the run! Thus the focus of the film is on Norman Bates.

    The Third Man - Anna is not the centre of the action - the film is mainly about Holly Martins and Harry Lime.

    Animal Kingdom - the death of Josh's girlfriend and the minor role she plays in the film.
    Pulp Fiction, Mia is a classy junkie but the action of the film focuses on Jules and Vince. Reservoir Dogs is all about 5 males. But Jackie Brown and the Kill Bill films break Tarantino's mould and the generic blueprint.

    You say.......Another development of the middle-class stereotype is that this family seem to have a dark, mysterious background – normally middle-class families are portrayed as honest or quite peaceful....I'd loose this generalisation because it's in accurate.

    Well done for discussing social class, but avoid generalisations without providing evidence. You could instead discuss the position of the main character and that white middle class audiences will be able to identify with him as he's easily recognisable. But this would be better for questions 4 or 5.

    Please note on
    Primary Characteristics and Conventions of Film "Noir: Themes and Styles

    The primary moods of classic film noir were melancholy, alienation, bleakness, disillusionment, disenchantment, pessimism, ambiguity, moral corruption, evil, guilt, desperation and paranoia. "

    You could thus discuss the representation of contemporary Britain in your film as bleak because of the pessimism and gloom caused by the recession and the brutal cuts in public spending by the coalition and the effect this is having on the 18-25 demographic!

    With advised revisions your response to this question could be raised considerably.