The Female Gaze in the Illusions Film

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The Female Gaze in the Illusions Film

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The Female Gaze in the Illusions Film

In this paper, I will review an activity of the representations of black women in Hollywood film. By this I will review the female gaze in a movie known as Illusions. Through this film, I demonstrate that there is negation of black representation in Hollywood film, either by no representation or stereotyped, racist representations. This makes it hard for black female viewers to recognize their representations on screen, leading to moments of rupture that allow black female spectators to generate an oppositional gaze that sees and interrogates the racism and sexism of Hollywood film. Gaze in critical concept signifies the actions of being seen and seeing (Barlow, 205). In a hegemonic moral belief that hinges on sexism and racism, the idea of gaze and who is allowed to contain one has been microcosmic of the associations of power that convey these concepts. Cinema can oppose racism and sexism or build a black feminist gaze by taking part in deconstructive filmic practices commonly exercised in other mainstream media. It creates an oppositional gaze or a black critical feminist gaze by functioning against the mainstream.

The female gaze is a feminist film hypothetical word signifying the look of the female onlooker. In the illusion film, the female gaze has been used to denote the viewpoint a female director, filmmaker, producer, or screenwriter brings to a cinema that would be different from a male view of the subject. The Illusions film by Dash is an example of a movie that build the gaze themselves (Barlow, 211). Illusions film is a 1982 movie transcribed and directed by Julie Dash. The short motion picture illustrates the life of an African American lady short-lived as a white female character at work in the film sector for the duration of the 1940s. The film calls consideration to the absence of African Americans in the film industry during that period. In illusions, an oppositional gaze is constructed in a way that all viewers being black females, are mandated to watch the cinema disapprovingly. The filmmaker ensures this by using all the film production components, for instance, the narrative, sound, editing, and cinematography.

The illusions that Julie Dash deliberates in her short motion picture try to seek consideration to the delusion that African Americans were not included in part of Hollywood history and attempts to finish the Illusion, to make things right by rewriting history ultimately. This illusory component is at its highest in the calling series of Illusions. The scene commences with a pan across a sound compartment that Mignon and Ned Bellamy (Her boss) go in, whereas two sound engineers try to finalize on the post-synchronous and dubbing sound for their Christmas holiday period release. However, there is an issue: the dubbing doesn’t match while their star is not around assisting with the war effort. To sort out the problem, they have taken on Esther (Rosanne Katon). She was a young African American girl, to substitute the star’s voice known as Leila Grant. After that scene, we then see a musical scene from the film.

However, one of the most noticeable illustrations is the writer’s decision to highpoint black women as the powerful elements of the chronicle at the same time as they fight to make a profession in the white occupied sector of Hollywood. Both Mignon’s and Esther’s choices and actions demonstrate the structure of the plot. It is apparent at the time when Mignon declines the white lieutenant’s signs of progress. On no occasion, it would have occurred in a traditional Hollywood chronicle for black female personalities. Leila Grant is the entity of desire: ‘the right female character of the treatise of feminists,’ an entity of the editor’s cut and gaze. She does not have the yearning; she is the yearning. She does not have a vocal sound; she exemplifies it. Stuck on the Dark Landmass, Esther gazes at Leila and desires to be desired.

Something interesting about this flick is how it exploits the numerous gazes found in the cinema. To commence with, we have Esther, the entity of the look of the sound engineer. Second, we have the verbatim doubling of the sound engineer whereby the viewers are sutured with, as we are put in of the sound compartment with him viewing this entire take place inside the studio. Then we have Esther looking at Leila Grant on the screen, attempting to lip-synch her sayings to her mouth movements. Other demonstration of Illusion generating a critical black feminist or an oppositional gaze can be seen in the asynchronous editing when Ester is singing. Esther’s lips and her voice are not quite matched up. This makes the viewers to deliberate about where the film’s sound originates from and disturbs the seamless pleasure that Hollywood functions so hard to keep up with perfect editing.

Julie Dash’s Illusions appeals attention to how the Hollywood studio scheme made the illusions that forced African American females to the verge of cinema history just to be forgotten. In her cinema, she creates these illusions perceptible by reviewing that same system and demonstrating how the Leila Grants of the domain in effect were not the depiction’s actual star. Cinema can build a critical black feminist gaze by creating an oppositional gaze through using pride, power, and confidence to deliver a message. Generally, this film has made a strong illustration of the oppositional gaze, or the critical black feminist gaze. The characters in the Illusions film work to reflect the black female’s movement out of servitude through strong and independent women. It directly function to reflect against the inclusiveness of primarily the black male and the erasure of black female history. 

In conclusion, Illusions portray a fictitious 1940s Hollywood studio and outline movie as a strong historian, though one that neglects several cultures from its history. The main character Mignon Dupree shows the necessity for movies that offer the public state of affairs and personalities that they can identify as part of their living. Illusions is a truthfully self-aware movie since it occurs in an imaginary studio, and its actors converse Hollywood’s movie production openly

Works Cited

Barlow, Jameta N. “When I Fell in Love with Myself: Disrupting the gaze and loving our Black Womanist self as an act of political warfare.” Meridians 15.1 (2016): 205-217.

Julie Dash. ILLUSIONS. USA, 1983.

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