Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Biceps or Toothpicks? Hercules Blog Four

Biceps or Toothpicks? A tale of Hercules and countless women

Hercules is a tale about a boy that is destined for greatness. He was born of the greek gods Zeus and Hara yet his is stripped of his immorality and strength at birth. He has to figure out on his own, without the power of his parents, how to become a real hero. He finally realizes that being a hero isn't your muscles but its about the heart. He ventures through the underworld and reclaims his immorality and of course, gets the girl. This movie was made in 1997, a year after I was born, yet it was a classic to watch with my friends. It was extremely popular in my generation and even more the people older than me. My mom said that she enjoyed watching it even though it was a little dark.

The positive message of this film is very clear and stated by Hercules father, Zeus as “a true hero isn't measured by the size of his strength but by the strength of his heart”. This movie goes through the story of how a young boy is stripped of his immorality and strength that his parents have given him. It shows how even in the worst of circumstances you can still be happy and find joy. It shows perseverance of how Hercules keeps pushing and fighting. He realizes that it truly is who you are as a person that makes you a hero. At one point of trial Hercules states “I know every mile will be worth my while. I’ll be right where I belong”. This is a good message for children to learn because it helps them see how perseverance can pay off and help you grow as a person. Hercules is strong in who he is and passionate about what he does.

The portrayal of extreme skinniness of the women. Yes they have bust hips and wide shoulders but the size of their waists are thinner than their fingers. This is further perpetrated through the least amount of diversity of these tiny waisted women. There is only one other women in the film that does not have this unnatural waist. One of the muses in the image to the left is her. However, she is in the corner, the shortest, the most clothed, yet she has the only proportional, anatomically correct body shape. It also is perpetuated in the main character Meg who has again a toothpick sized waist with hips larger than her head. This gives an extremely unnatural body ideal for young girls to idolize.

The most obvious and important message of this film is in fact the hero tale. The entire movie is about how being yourself is the best chose and that all Hercules can do is make the best of what he is given. It shows how to stick through the hard times and to have strength through the storm. Hercules is a great hero and shows his strength with less violence to others. This is the most effective message in this move. Yet it still is extremely important for children to learn how to rise through adversity. However, it does not diminish the subconscious effect of the tiny waisted women.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with your analysis Hannah. The hero tale was the main message. However, I had never realized how women bodies were portrayed in the movie and I also believe that it gave a wrong body ideal for small girls to idolize.