Home > Free Essays > Sociology > Feminism > Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women

Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women Essay (Movie Review)

Exclusively available on IvyPanda Available only on IvyPanda
Updated: Jan 13th, 2022

Filmmakers use strategies such as body art, self-reflexivity, film and videotape, digital effects and hyper-realist minimalism in enhancing the performance of films. These techniques mainly belong to the misogynist avant-garde. Consequently, the challenge is transferring them to the mainstream culture of filmmaking among female directors. These techniques have the capabilities of shifting meaning away from the narrative as the source of meaning to the audience’s background knowledge in making meaning. In filmmaking, such techniques construct meaning and involve filmmakers personally (Todd, p. 12).

In the context of race, scholars argue that Freud and Lacan’s psychoanalytic approach is ineffective in explaining racial dominance. Therefore, understanding the unprivileged black race must involve examining the works of both black and white feminists’ theories and knowledge of black history in contrast to familiar representation in arts.

In film theory, white feminists use films in examining gender relations and roles informal conventions of film strategies or techniques. Thus, patriarchal order results from film strategies.

Dunye’s Watermelon Woman has strategies and techniques such as relationships among actors, audience, and elements of the film show that we can only understand them in isolation. Diana and Cheryl are both women (black and white) who share a relationship we can only understand through their narratives which suggest appropriation. In addition, there is a sex episode between the two women (highly charged and hyper-eroticized) (Mulvey, p. 6). The scene reflects equality. None is dominant, and both desire each other. These elements and episodes of feelings and desires create emotions in anyone irrespective of race or gender. In addition, the audience may just watch the episodes for sexual pleasure. Consequently, anyone can easily construct their gaze about the characters who are all sexual objects.

Diana acts as a male protagonist in the film while Cheryl plays the role of a sexual object for possession. Diana controls events just like a male character. Cheryl continues to play a passive role in hiding her sexuality. Tamara declares that they are lesbians and so in the business of female-to-female attraction (Creekmur and Alexander, p. 45).

Dunye also shows that society still relies on out-of-date social norms and weak representations of blacks.

Dunye highlights that a modern society can still experience the roles of women through narratives and visual cinemas. As the director creates female characters with the male roles, any male audience can identify with them (Hayward, p. 112).

White and Black police officers who arrest Cheryl mistake her for a man. Spectators’ constructed ideas are most likely to identify with the annoyance and helpless status of Cheryl as she undergoes discrimination in several ways. Dunye’s black and white characters show that women of these races have the same sexual desires and all genders, and races can wield powers.

Watermelon Woman opposes negative attributes society imposes on black identity. This affects existing gazes, which spectators construct and attach to films. Dunye portrays a character beyond the societal structures of the 1930s. Dunye shows that sexuality and various gazes in society have no barriers in terms of race or gender. The film gives the audience chances to try different gazes and see what evolves.

Works Cited

  1. Creekmur, Corey and Alexander Doty. Out in Culture: Gay, Lesbian, and Queer Essays on Popular Culture. London: Duke University Press Books, 1995. Print.
  2. Hayward, Susan. Cinema Studies: The Key Concepts. New York: Routledge, 2000. Print.
  3. Mulvey, Laura. “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema.” Screen, 23.5 (1975): 6-18. Print.
  4. Todd, Janet. Women and Film: (Part I “Feminist Film Theory: The Problem of Women in Film”). New York: Holmes & Meier, 1988. Print.
This essay on Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women was written and submitted by your fellow student. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly.
Removal Request
If you are the copyright owner of this paper and no longer wish to have your work published on IvyPanda.
Request the removal

Need a custom Essay sample written from scratch by
professional specifically for you?

Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar

certified writers online

Cite This paper
Select a referencing style:

Reference

IvyPanda. (2022, January 13). Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women. https://ivypanda.com/essays/feminist-film-strategy-the-watermelon-women/

Reference

IvyPanda. (2022, January 13). Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/feminist-film-strategy-the-watermelon-women/

Work Cited

"Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women." IvyPanda, 13 Jan. 2022, ivypanda.com/essays/feminist-film-strategy-the-watermelon-women/.

1. IvyPanda. "Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women." January 13, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/feminist-film-strategy-the-watermelon-women/.


Bibliography


IvyPanda. "Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women." January 13, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/feminist-film-strategy-the-watermelon-women/.

References

IvyPanda. 2022. "Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women." January 13, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/feminist-film-strategy-the-watermelon-women/.

References

IvyPanda. (2022) 'Feminist Film Strategy: The Watermelon Women'. 13 January.

Powered by CiteTotal, easy essay citation generator
More related papers