Masculinity in Films and Filmmaking Analytical Essay by Nicky

A look at representations of masculinity in cinema.
# 146497 | 2,322 words | 10 sources | MLA | 2010 | US
Published on Dec 29, 2010 in Film (History of) , Film (Analysis, Criticism, Etc.)

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This paper examines the representations of masculinity in film as a reflection of women's image of the perfect male. Various movies, the actors and settings are cited as showing this. Additionally, the paper contends that women are not attracted to sensitive male types, such as in "When Harry met Sally," but rather macho, muscle-bound heroes. This is traced from the beginnings of film history to the present. The paper concludes by stating that the masculinity factor has dominated films because women are the target audience. These representations are a reflection of the female perspective of the ideal man.

From the Paper:

"Looking at leading men over the years of filmmaking, we get more an idea of the image of women's ideal man, rather than the most entertaining or best choice of actor for a leading role. Masculinity portrayed on screen, by the men who portray them in the characters they depict in film, and whom, as actors, draw from the well of their own sensitivities, their own experiences, their own personas, and their interpretations of life as they observe it in their male bastions of camaraderie to bring the characters to life on film; are a documentary of where the female perspective is at that point in time as regards men at that point in history."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Ayers, Drew. "Bodies, Bullets, and Bad Guys: Elements of the Hardbody Film." Film Criticism 32.3 (2008): 41+. Questia. 12 Mar. 2009 <>.
  • Cameron, John (dir), The Terminator (and series) 1984, 1991, and 2003, motion picture film, Hemdale Film, USA.
  • Donner, Richard (dir), Lethal Weapon (and series), Lethal Weapon (and series)1979, 1981, and 1985, motion picture, Silver Pictures, USA.
  • Eastwood, Clint (dir), Play Misty for Me, 1971, motion picture film, Universal Pictures, USA.
  • Grant, Barry Keith, and Sloniowski, Jeanette, Documenting the Documentary: Close Readings of Documentary Film and Video (Wayne State University Press, Michigan, 1998).

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

Masculinity in Films and Filmmaking (2010, December 29) Retrieved March 31, 2023, from

MLA Format

"Masculinity in Films and Filmmaking" 29 December 2010. Web. 31 March. 2023. <>