Irrational Man Movie Analysis

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This brings us to the plot of the film. Irrational Man is a film about a philosophy professor named Abe, played by Joaquin Phoenix, who takes a job at a small college. This professor seems to be going through an existential crisis and quickly builds up a reputation on campus as a a wild drinker, seducer as well as profoundly depressive. He begins an affair with a fellow lecturer while he initiates a flirtatious friendship with a student. When gloomy* Abe overhears a conversation in a local cafe, he comes up with the idea to murder a perfect stranger. Abe, whose life up to now has seemed without purpose, suddenly felt like his life had renewed sense of purpose. Abe gets excited about planning this perfect murder, obsessing over every little…show more content…
Except for being under fire for displaying his own alter-ego in his films Allen also receives a fair share of feminist critique. True to the freudian theory… as Freud was often critiqued Freud theorised about the Psychosexual Stages of a child, claiming that there are 5 stages to a child’s Psychosexual Development. Stage three, the Phallic Stage, focusses on the child becoming aware of anatomical sex differences. Freud explains this theory as The Oedipus complex in boys and the Electra complex in girls. In the shortest terms the Oedipus complex is based on the idea that the young boy develops sexual desires for his mother and a hatred towards the father with murderous tendencies. The young girl on the other hand goes through the Electra complex, which is exactly the opposite of the Oedipus complex, except more brief as according to Freud, the girl soon realises that she does not have a penis and this leads to the development that she wishes that she was a boy. Freud calls this penis envy, this is also one of Freud’s most controversial theories that many reject completely. There is something in the way Freud seems to address women that draws a similarity as to how Allen’s female characters are constructed. Allen is often scrutinised for dealing with female characters as erotic objects merely there for the male gaze. Many of his film including some scenes of Irrational Man includes narrators explaining their own actions that more often than not actively objectify young women. He is known for a depiction of the much-older man pursuing the much-younger woman. The fact that director Woody Allen has been charged with molesting his adopted daughter makes this complex particularly interesting especially in terms of his films. More often than not Woody Allen’s movies are critiqued to As James Wolcott in Vanity Fair noted; “Increasingly, the women in his movies
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