Racism,Misogyny, and Homophobia in Horror Films
Racism,Misogyny, and Homophobia in Horror Films
Theentertainment industry is one of the largest branches of the world`seconomies. Some of the products offered by this sector includemovies. The motion pictures are usually expected to provide a form ofleisure to human beings. Additionally, the content in such worksprovides education on various philosophies in the community. Notably,genres such as documentaries fulfill this purpose. Lastly, movies arealso expected to give a critique of the societal culture. However,recent movies have failed to meet some of these needs. A majority ofthem inflate the reality in such a way that they begin to losemeaning. The works of art are no longer entertaining nor educative.Instead, they represent a distorted community. The horror filmindustry is one of the areas that have been affected by this problem.The creations fail to acknowledge the evolution in societal behaviors(Olney, 2013). One such movie is ScaryMovie.Prominently, its depictions of racism, misogyny, and homophobia areso flagrant and exaggerated in a way that they begin to function as aform of criticism, which calls attention to the tropes of the genre.The paper analyzes how these concepts are represented in scary films.
Racismrefers to an antagonism directed towards people of a particular race,which is based on the ideology that one`s ethnicity is superior. Theconcept often leads to the mistreatment of the minorities. The lessergroup also gets less access to development opportunities. On theother hand, misogyny refers to prejudice against women. In mostcases, the male gender is considered superior to that of the female.As such, oppressive behavior may be directed towards the femalegroup. Some of the factors that constitute misogyny include socialexclusion, sex discrimination, violence, and sexual objectificationof the girl child. Lastly, the term homophobia is used to describe adislike of homosexual characters such as lesbians, gays, bisexuals,and transgender. Such individuals are despised because of theirsexual orientation and preferences.
Misogynyis one of the most common evils in horror films. A majority of theclips portrays female as an object of abuse. As such, the charactersare often subjected to torture. Men in such motion picture are oftenkilled fast and without any dramatic scenes. At the same time, womenare killed mercilessly, slowly, and painfully (Olney, 2013). Forinstance, in the ScaryMovie, DrewDecker, dies grotesquely. She is stabbed, hit by a car, andeventually murdered by Ghost face. Aside from that, females aresexually objectified since they are hunted and used to satisfy thesexual desires of their counterparts. In the ScaryMovie, amajority of the killings interrupt erotic scenes. It as though therole of the women in the society is to please men. Though thecharacters may emerge as the heroes in the story, their victory comesas a form of revenge for crimes committed against them. In otherwords, female characters are always scarred.
Misogynyis also presented in the form of cowardice. Women are shown to beweaklings who cannot defend themselves. Additionally, they areportrayed as beings who cower in fear at the slightest sight ofdanger. As such, they often need to be accompanied by men who act asprotectors. The view undermined the capability of the female genderwhile inflating the superiority of their male counterparts.
Lastly,these films have made the female body look disgusting by exploitingthemes such as menstruation and the birthing process. In most cases,the onset of puberty for a woman is used to depict the age at whichtheir monstrosity begins. As such, individuals in the real world havestarted exaggerating the extent of a woman`s mood swings during herperiod. Aside from that, women who give birth in these movies oftenget children who are possessed or associated with evil. To makematters worse, the creations portray the process as messy andundesirable. Some pictures painted often promote the resentment ofthese natural occurrences. As such, young women usually lose theirself-esteem when experiencing these changes.
Onthe other hand, horror films have been accused of being homophobic.Today, gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgender (LGBT) have beenaccepted by the society. However, this genre of entertainment refusesto acknowledge their existence. It has retained its stereotype ofmale superiority and female vulnerability. A majority of producers inthis industry are unwilling to bring the topic on board (Olney,2013). For instance, the ScaryMovie doesnot have any scene that identifies with the LGBT community.
Similarly,those that hint at the idea often hide it by using non-humancharacters. For instance, some films will offer gay or bisexualcharacteristics to a creature from a different galaxy. Such behaviorassociates the sexual orientations to guilt, weakness, and secrecy.It reflects the extent to which society is homophobic. Additionally,it encourages self-loathing among individuals in the LGBT community.To make matters worse, the films that address the issue openlydisplay the LGBT as weak, vulnerable, and cowardly. A majority assumethe role of a final girl. As such, they are piled up in the samecorner as the female gender.
Racismcan also be observed in horror films where the cast in such movies ispredominantly white. Top grossing creations rarely have an actor fromthe minority groups. Additionally, the motion pictures are based onthe lifestyle of the white Americans. The script explores luxuriousliving such as visits to holiday homes and camps. Besides, it is areflection of the misfortunes of a white person on vacation. As such,none of them assumes the primary setting in which the minoritycommunities live. It also ignores the actual issues in society suchas poverty and crime. In the ScaryMovie, theblack Americans are a minority. More so, they assume support rolesand end up being killed.
Onthe other hand, people of the color end up dying first. The fact isparticularly the case for black Americans involved in horror films.The ideology is representative of the society. The minority groupsare discriminated in the films, thereby having lower chances ofsuccess. In most cases, they adopt a wild thug life and only succeedby being monsters, such as gang leaders or drug lords. However, theexaggerations in the films are not friendly. The practices have beentransmitted in real life situations, thus affecting the socialdevelopment of communities. Horror films have promoted the adoptionof discriminatory practices against women, people of color, and theLGBT community, particularly the younger generation who are in theirformative ages.
Fromthe above information, it is clear that the ScaryMovie isracist, misogynic, and homophobic. Additionally, the discussionreveals that exposure to such materials could be damaging theperception of minorities. The creators of scary movies ought toestablish measures that diminish this form of discrimination.Similarly, the theater legislators should come up with ways tointegrate equally into this industry without ruining the quality ofwork presented by the scriptwriters. Besides, such harmony is likelyto promote the creation and maintenance of a better and accommodatingsociety.
Olney,I. (2013). Eurohorror: Classic European horror cinema in contemporary Americanculture.Bloomington: Indiana University Press.