Lad Flicks: A Hybrid of Buddie Movies, Romantic Comedies and Chick Flicks

2008 Words9 Pages
Research Paper ‘Lad flicks’ or ‘lad movies’ is a type of film genre that emerged in the late 1990s. They are defined as a “‘hybrid of “buddy movies”, romantic comedies and “chick flicks”, which centre on the trials and tribulations of a young man as he grows up to become a ‘real man’. ‘Lad flicks’ respond in part to the much-debated ‘crisis in masculinity’” (Benjamin A. Brabon 116). This genre of film explored what it meant to be a ‘real man’ in the twentieth century and in order to do so, they would have to grow up and leave their juvenile ways behind to enter the heterosexual world. Gender relations in ‘lad flicks’ portray masculinity as a troubled, anxious cultural category hiding behind a humorous façade and also rely greatly on a knowing gaze and irony. The two ‘lad flicks’ that will be analyzed are The 40-Year-Old Virgin (Judd Apatow 2005) and Role Models (David Wain 2008). The figure of the ‘new lad’ has been a feature of popular culture in the United Kingdom, United States, and elsewhere since the early 1990s. In the book, The Trouble with Men: Masculinities in European and Hollywood Cinema, the author relates to Nick Hornby’s, a screenwriter and English novelist, thoughts on lads. He states that there are two versions of the modern male that have anxieties between the two main constructions of contemporary masculinity: New man and New Lad (Phil Powrie 2004, pp.84). By the start of the twentieth century, the word ‘masculinity’ was always associated with the word ‘crisis’; this is now portrayed in ‘lad flicks’. Masculinity is the central object of contemporary ‘lad flicks’; they combine different genre elements to focus specifically on difficulties that face contemporary masculinity. The male characters in these films... ... middle of paper ... ...cks’ discussed above do portray masculinity as a troubled, anxious cultural category as they hide behind a humorous façade through their unglamorous jobs, male bonding, homophobic comments and insults, and the pressure to change and become a ‘real man’ in order to live up to their successful female interests. Bibliography ‘Chuck Flick’: A Genealogy of the Postfeminist Male Singleton – Benjamin A. Brabon ‘Dude, You’re a Fag’: Adolescent Masculinity and the Fag Discourse - C. J. Pascoe 2005 Lad flicks: Discursive reconstructions of masculinity in popular film - Hansen-Miller and Gill Feminism at the movies – Hilary Radner and Rebecca Stringer The Trouble with Men: Masculinities in European and Hollywood Cinema - Phil Powrie, Ann Davies and Bruce Babington. Cultures of Masculinity – Tim Edwards Hollywood Genres and Postwar America – Mike Chopra-gant

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