"The Black Dahlia"
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This paper discusses Brian De Palma's 2006 film, "The Black Dahlia". The paper also discusses Laura Mulvey's theory of the gaze and the application of her theory to classical Hollywood cinema. The paper then discusses the application of the same theoretical apparatus to a contemporary Hollywood retro-noir (a contemporary film that references classical Hollywood film noir texts within a modern context), particularly "The Black Dahlia", and shows how it opens new avenues for understanding the operation of the gaze in film.
From the Paper:"In conclusion, our application of Laura Mulvey's theory of the gaze to De Palma's The Black Dahlia reveals not only gaps in the theoretical model - notably its insufficient exploration of the castrating feminine power of the film noir femme fatale - but also how a modern film can compel us to open the theory to encompass homoerotic and lesbian aspects. While De Palma's use of "screen tests" in the movie represents an almost perfect example of the male gaze in operation - it may be speculated whether De Palma has read Mulvey, and deliberately crafts the scene with this theoretical model in mind? - in its broader frame the film compels us to open the heterosexual male/female binary implied by the model to take into consideration differently gendered approaches to the representation of sexuality, power and domination in cinema."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Britton, Andrew. "The Lady from Shanghai: Betrayed by Rita Hayworth." in The Book of Film Noir. Ed. Ian Cameron. New York: Continuum, 1992, 213-221.
- Doane, Mary Ann. "Film and the Masquerade: Theorizing the Female Spectator." In The Feminism and Visual Culture Reader. Ed. Amelia Jones. London: Routledge, 2003, 44-52.
- Maxfield, James. The Fatal Woman: Sources of Male Anxiety in the American "Film Noir", 1941-1991. Madison: Dickenson University Press, 1996.
- Mulvey, Laura. "Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema." In The Feminism and Visual Culture Reader. Ed. Amelia Jones. London: Routledge, 2003, 44-52.
Cite this Term Paper:
"The Black Dahlia" (2007, December 05) Retrieved January 18, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/term-paper/the-black-dahlia-99876/
""The Black Dahlia"" 05 December 2007. Web. 18 January. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/term-paper/the-black-dahlia-99876/>