Transform-her

3 Mar

Hauna Dawkins

Group: Gender

Summary: This week I watched a movie that came out in 2011 called Transformers III “Dark of the Moon”. Transformers is a movie series that tells the story of Sam Witwicky , played by Shia LeBeouf and his encounters he has with robots from another planet. These robots called the “Autobots” have a past history with another sect of bad robots referred to as the “Decepticons”. In the end Sam, his new girlfriend along with two of his companions in conjunction with the Autobots, defeat the Decepticons from taking over Earth.

Analysis: Looking at gender this week with this movie, it was easy to analyze as the way that both men and women were represented in this movie went right on the line of the stereotypical ways in which we perceive men and women in our society.

 

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, casted as Sam’s girlfriend in the film is, in real life a model an in the movie she is exemplified for her appearance. Sex sells and they definitely use her looks to their advantage to gain the interests of viewers. Booting Sam’s previous girlfriend Megan Fox—another sexy vixen that’s on the rise in the film industry, the producers didn’t fall short casting Sam’s follow up. Not only does she wear the tight clothes, have the long sexy legs and wear heels in almost every scene her behavior also falls into the stereotypical feminine category.

In the movie she is taken captive by her boss, who is with the Decepticons undercover. Sam is her hero and has to come save her from danger… all going in junction with the idea that women need men, men are smarter, stronger and she’s the damsel in distress needing to be saved. I’m realizing that in most movies the women get themselves in trouble where they have to be saved and/or men use women as bait, or tokens to get the men that care about the women to do what they want. In this movie, Sam’s girlfriend was the entry way to the Decepticons, they worked on getting closer to him through using her.

One thing that kind of went against the grain of the usual male and female perceptions in movies, was the fact that Rosie was in fact the person in their relationship with the job (even if the only reason she got the job was to get closer to Sam)… as Sam struggled to find work…she paid the bills, gave him money for lunch etc… In most romantic relationships in movies if one person is staying home it’s the woman. But as it goes against the grain it also goes right along with it because, Sam not having a job in the movie was looked down upon. His parents were upset and he himself felt less of a man because he didn’t have a job. There were times in the movie where his girlfriend’s boss challenged his masculinity and made him feel inadequate because he couldn’t provide for his girlfriend like her boss could. Her boss even went as far as buying her a $80,000 car. That really hurt.

The men in the film were defined by their masculinity through their means of dressing. Sam was often portrayed as the weaker male, whether it be due to experience, age etc…Carly’s boss was always clean cut with a nice suite, shiny shoes etc… and when Sam teamed up with some army guys including cast member famous r&b singer Tyrese.. these guys had on cut off shirts, army uniforms and held heavy guns. They looked tough, acted tough and were presented as not being afraid, strong and helped Sam save his girlfriend Carly in the end.

Response

This movie definitely played into societies expectations of the gender roles for men and women. I see more and more how true it is that women can play these major lead roles in film, but only by compromising at some points. In order to have a major role like Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, you have to be sexy, tall, or appeal to a particular crowd and be type casted like Rosie O Donald or other women who are famous because they fit particular roles needed in movies. Sometimes I think this in unfortunate but I think that this is just how things work for us and I think more people agree with it than not.  To be honest, I don’t see it changing anytime soon.

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