Far From Heaven Analysis

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The themes of homosexual and interracial desire are reintroduced in the swimming pool scene at this point in Far From Heaven. Prior to the swimming pool scene, Cathy and Frank withdraw themselves from their inner most desires, in order to save their marriage. The couple is first seen at a New Year Eve’s celebration, during this scene there are subtle indications their marital issues are not resolved. Furthermore, the social hierarchy between blacks and whites is established, as there are black servants. However, this does not appear to phase Cathy, as she returns to her wifely duties to Frank. On the other hand, the low-key lighting and point of view shots of Frank imply his conversion treatment has not ‘cured’ his homosexuality. The audience is briefly introduced to a nameless man, who catches the attention of Frank. This moment, in…show more content…
In addition, the low key lighting of the hotel room creates a sensual yet tense atmosphere between the men. The sexual attraction between the men is intensified as the camera slowly tracks down the young mans body, this reveals the young man wearing red swimming shorts. The red swimming shorts symbolise passion and threat of temptation for Frank, in which he later indulges in. Furthermore, the movement of camera sexualises the white male body, which contrasts mainstream representations of the white body. Historically, the black male body has been hyper-sexualised and represented as the other for the white audience. Whereas, Far From Heaven reverts this representation of the black male body onto the white male body, to conceptualises homosexual desire within the framework of a 1950’s melodrama. Although, Haynes remains to conventional 1950’s melodrama by fading out the sexual encounter between the men, arguably the audience is now positioned as Cathy, as she is unaware of Frank’s infidelity.
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