My choice of a movie as my intercultural film paper was the blind side. I chose this movie because the blind side is based around culture the entire movie and is a perfect example of it. Lee Hancock’s film entitled “The Blind Side” describes the struggle of a Black man to become part of the White society. Michael Oher, the main character in the story shows the audience how a black man experiences mistreatment and discrimination from his white community which is the common trend of American mainstream.
However, the film also wants to deconstruct the traditional perceptions towards White Americans through the Tuohy family. In this movie, the director shows how White Americans like the Tuohy family accept Michael for who he is and what he wants to be. The Tuohys become Michael’s enduring power, armor, and salvation as he faces his new path of transformation, social acceptance, and immersion. From this sense, it can be perceived that Hancock’s film depicts the notion of popular culture as it emphasizes the different issues of the society such as race, racism, cultural differences, cultural interaction, and other ideas about culture and society.
The film’s goal is to show how Michael is being accepted in a social norm through his new found family. For many years, Michael has lived with different foster families, but ends up leaving them. He feels that he does not fit because of the different family situations, status, and lifestyle. However, Michael is not just a common individual, he has a unique character that leads him to popularity. In the beginning of his life with the Tuohys, he detaches himself from them. This is primarily because of the fact that he is a Black American while the Tuohys are White.
Throughout the discussion of Michael’s life, the film is presented with minimal flashbacks-only if there is a need, such as the depiction of Michael’s mother and other important details that help establish the main character’s personality. The film tries to express the situation that happens when a Black American becomes part of a White American family. The conflict of the story is, “Will Michael fit into his new found home?” Having an extreme difference in terms of race, lifestyle, social background, and social status, the two races are combined together under one roof to describe the possible repulsion that might occur as well as the attraction that can happen between them. However, it is not only this internal repulsion or attraction that is presented as a conflict of the film, but also the people within the Tuohy’s social surroundings. Since Leigh Anne and Sean are influential individuals because of their profession, people around them think that adopting Michael taints their good reputation. This is one of the major struggles of the Tuohy family along with Michael, but they stand up against their foes and prove to these people that Michael is more civilized than those who continue to criticize him.
The concept of popular culture emerges in this film in three distinct themes: racism within the football team, the lifestyle of the socialites, and when an upcoming superstar is “made,” people keep an eye on this individual. According to John Storey (2009), “‘race’ and racism are not natural or inevitable phenomena; they have a history and are a result of human actions and interactions” (pg. 168). Logically, racism occurs in television, radio, movies, and other types of media. Most of the time, these industries use racism as a form of stereotyping. That is why common people utilize these ideals, they think that it is accepted in the society. This is what happened to Michael. He faces discrimination inside his own classroom. Even his teacher demonstrates the differences of how a White teacher interacts with a Black student like him. It is a form of stereotype that the media continues to express towards its audience.
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