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Representation of Young Men in Hot Rod and American Pie

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Introduction

Representation of Young Men in Hot Rod and American Pie The media have the power through selection to give us an influential portrayal of different groups, situations and ideas. We see these representations in different ways according to our own assumptions. Representations can change over time and give us a kind of social barometer of changing representations of social groups and trends. Many media sources portray the youth in the same way, with a limited view of them as being sex obsessed. However, some material is more sensitive and sympathetic. An example would be the film Ferris Bueller's Day Off, this offers quite sensitive portrayals of youth coping with relationships, authority and identity. If we look at this representation in one particular area such as the representation of young men, we can see that many media texts portray young males in a variety of ways. This is because there are many types of young males to look at and there is always a change in fashion and ideology through the years. The two texts I have chosen are both different in their representations and I shall explore these representations in detail. In the USA, since the ending of the Production Code and its replacement with the MPAA film rating system in the late 1960s, some filmmakers began to experiment with vulgar humor. ...read more.

Middle

Heather, the choir girl he falls for, ends up winning his heart. He confesses the pact that the guys have made to her and admits that he doesn't even care about the sex, he just wants to be with her. This is a key example of how Oz is represented as a good guy, and unlike the others isn't looking for sex. In the film there are two youth panicking over how to answer the college entrance exam question, "What is your most emotionally significant moment?" The girl says "How am I supposed to know my most emotionally significant moment is? I have no idea what I want to do...Thank God, I thought I was the only one." In another scene the boys acknowledge their confusion about what they want and where they are going. One boy says, "I don't know what I'm doing", but the movie ends happily as they all agree they aren't supposed to know. They say, "You can't plan everything" and then they toast to "right now" and "the next step". This shows the youth more as young adults thinking about the next step, but with the traditional ideology that things never work out the way you want, so why bother? The second film I have chosen to analyse is Hot Rod which is not a big box office film unlike American Pie, with less of a variety of young males represented in it. ...read more.

Conclusion

This also is shown in the way he speaks as the quote above shows. The next character I will look at is Rod's slightly younger step brother, Kevin, who is a skinny boy with a bowl hair cut and wears retro style tops tucked into his skin tight jeans pulled up to his waist, this gives him a dorky look and quite a retro appearance which you can see in such films as Superbad through the character Evan. In the film he looks up to Rod and see's him as role model, this is a stereotypical younger brother attitude. Both films have uses and gratifications for the viewer with the main one for each being the entertainment value they have through the comedy used. There is a sexual gratification in both films for each gender, with attractive males and females in both films. They offer the audience social gratification giving people the chance to talk about the films to one another in everyday life, and to an extent both films have role models for the audience to look up to and sympathise for. Again in both of the films there is a fairytale ending, in Hot Rod where he gets the girl and his step dad's respect and in American Pie where Jim also gets the girl and everything is back to normal. ...read more.

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