Thelma And Louise Film Analysis Essay

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Thelma and Louise (Ridley Scott, 1991), reverses the roles of the male and female characters. Did the film accomplish what it set out to do? Was the violence necessary? More importantly, was it a feminist film? The film was controversial and sparked public debate, which started discussions on topics still relevant in current media and feminism. The film Thelma and Louise challenges Mulvey’s theory by presenting female lead characters who challenge the ways of a patriarchal society by reversing the roles of the male and female through the idea of “the female gaze” and assertion of the female characters’ defiance. Laura Mulvey’s essay, “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema”, argues that there is a clear division in gender representation. Mulvey states that women…show more content…
The film, Thelma and Louise claims the gaze through the construction of female protagonists who assume traditionally male roles and behaviors. It was able to accomplish this by using male characters as sexual objects and employing cinematographic techniques traditionally reserved to maintain the male gaze. Laura Mulvey’s essay, “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema” coins the term “male gaze” and politicizes Freudian psychoanalysis to study cinematic spectatorship (Mulvey 1). She emphasizes the importance of how the various features of cinema viewing conditions enable the spectator to engage in both the voyeuristic process of objectification of female characters as well as the identification process in which viewers relate to the “ideal ego” onscreen (Mulvey 3). For instance, when Daryl asserts his power over Thelma, he is degrading her down to a piece of property rather than another individual. To Laura Mulvey, this concept would mean that the male character is in full control of the female character, that Thelma is objectified as Daryl’s property (Mulvey 5). We see this in the very beginning of the film, where Thelma is introduced as an obedient

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