Stereotypes In Hollywood Film

1000 Words4 Pages
While watching movies, have you ever noticed that the villains in almost every single Hollywood film are of Middle Eastern or European descent? In a reoccurring theme of Hollywood, the villains in these films are almost always foreigners or people of color. This is a stereotype. On the other side of the spectrum, we often see that the heroes of these films are most often than not white males. This is another stereotype. Within the last few years, we’ve seen actors such as Will Smith, Morgan Freeman, and Zoe Saldana take the lead roles, so it can’t be said that there are no non-white heroes, but there certainly isn’t many. Hollywood action movies, moreover than other genres, are typically loaded with an abundance of stereotypes. The way these movies are composed and structured can tell us a great deal about the views held within the American psyche and who holds the social power. The harsh reality is that the media ultimately sets the tone for societal standards, moralities, and images of our culture. Many consumers of media have never encountered some of the minorities or people of color shown on screen, so they subsequently depend on the media and wholeheartedly believe that the degrading stereotypes represented on the big screen are based on fact and not fiction. Mary Beltran said it best when she stated in her “Fast and Bilingual: Fast & Furious and the Latinization of Racelessness” article, “ultimately, Fast & Furious mobilizes notions of race in contradictory ways. It reinforces Hollywood traditions of white centrism, reinforcing notions of white male master while also dramatizing the figurative borders crossed daily by culturally competent global youth – both Latino and non-Latino” (77). This paper will specifically look...

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...ilms such as Fast & Furious with a critical eye, it’s clear that the recurrent racialized stereotypes that are commonly portrayed in action films are directly contributing to and reflecting the materialization of stereotypes in our culture. Although films may be posed as superficial or mindless, they cannot be viewed passively without questioning what was seen. Even a film that is meant to be made for fun or entertainment can reject stereotypes and challenge the mainstream ideologies of what we think we know about people based on race. Media characterizations have real life repercussions, and the characters in Fast & Furious honestly could have been presented without resorting to stereotypes and racial hierarchies. Once you keep an open eye for these stereotypes, you simply can’t stop seeing them. Media is not apolitical, not neutral, and definitely not arbitrary.
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