Beasts of Southern Wild (Day #7)

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2 thoughts on “Beasts of Southern Wild (Day #7)

  1. At first glance, Beasts of the Southern Wild appears to be a raw and inspiring film that focuses on race/class intersections within the community called “The Bathtub”. The story follows Hushpuppy, a six year old black girl who lives with and is raised by her alcoholic father named Wink. As the winner of multiple awards at Sundance and Cannes this film has most often been praised for its roots in a sense of primitiveness. Although it is bold of the writers to take on such “controversial” aspects of life in poverty as well as blackness, there seem to be more critiques on what the film is lacking or masking. Simply put, the film fails to recognize the various hegemonic ideologies that are operating within the community of the Bathtub. This community is portrayed as a utopia for poor blacks living in poverty, such as Hushpuppy and her father. There seems to be a lack of discourse on racial differences within the Bathtub community, which is an unrealistic idea when there are numerous races and ethnicities sharing a certain space. The film also highlights gender as a prominent theme when regarding Hushpuppy. Despite physically looking like a girl, Hushpuppy is characterized by masculine traits such as being extremely independent and “wild”. I believe it is important to understand the intersections of race, class and gender when watching this film, based on the reviews provided.
    Quotes:
    “Even though black and white folks who are different share space and live in harmony, embracing the notion that their solidarity is tooted in fierce independence, in the willingness to live beyond the law in a world where they make their own rules. Even though such utopian values are depicted as awesomely positive in the film, ultimately it is patriarchal masculinity that rules, that makes the decision.” (Bell Hooks)
    “Audiences wait for a gendered identity to be revealed. Clearly the camera toys with the child’s body pornographically eroticizing the image.” (Bell Hooks)
    “This isn’t the first case of black children being depicted as insensitive to pain, or of black suffering and survival being used to symbolize American democracy. With its dystopian landscape, the film evokes the precarity, instability and vulnerability of black life.” (Jayna Brown)
    Questions:
    1. Why do the filmmakers exclude racial discourses in the community of the Bathtub? (Realistically a community such as this should have multiple discussions on race)
    2. Why is the notion of blackness associated with primitiveness in this movie? Does this not further complicate stereotypes surrounding the black community?
    3. Why is it so important that Hushpuppy’s gender never be discussed? What does she represent in terms of masculinity and femininity?

  2. In the Article No Love in the Wild (Day #7 – Beasts of Southern Wild) it was written by and author named bell hooks who was born Gloria Jean Watkins in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, her purpose was to explains her horrible experience at the movie to go see “beast of southern wild” with his friends. Bell hooks is an author of over thirty books, many of which have focused on issues of social class, race, and gender. Her latest book is titled Belonging: A Culture of Place. This particular article is about the tragic experience she had with a particular film. From the looks of it he said that he was disgusted he could not stand to see the images that were being played on the screen. Most of all he said that he hatted how much people around the world praised the film and said it was great. He said his friends gave the film to thumbs up. He stated did the not see what I seen. The movie Beast of the wild is a story about a little girl name Hushpuppy that was six years old that the struggle to survive with her father. This story was based on the natural disasters that occur in the Louisiana area. The authors point was to show what it is like to live in their shoes during struggling times like that.

    Quotes
    “I was amazed that what I saw, they did not see”(Hooks).
    “Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hahn tells students that putting images inside our heads is just like eating. And if “you are what you eat”(Hooks)
    Questions
    How cruel were the images seen in the movie to make her leave the movies?
    How many other states are effect with those same naturally disasters and are they as effective?
    How does this tie into our recent films?

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