SCREEN-L Archives

August 1995, Week 4


Options: Use Proportional Font
Show Text Part by Default
Condense Mail Headers

Message: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Topic: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]
Author: [<< First] [< Prev] [Next >] [Last >>]

Print Reply
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
"Folan, Bernie" <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 24 Aug 1995 15:17:06 GMT
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
text/plain (69 lines)
          G Weaver wrote:
          >The discussion of violent films has been an interesting one
          >having done reception research on The Accused.  Whilst we
          >might view this as containing the message that no woman
          >provokes rape, the message taken from the film by many
          >women viewers is that women should not display their
          >sexuality to the extent that it might be interpreted by men
          >as 'a come on'.  How do members of the Screen-L group rate
          >this film in relation to the question 'are violent movies
          >good'?.  It seems to me that most of the debate so far is
          >coming from an auteur approach.  But what about the
          >position of the industry context of films?
          This for me is a difficult one. The last scene of the
          Accused for me is one of the most difficult things to watch
          and after the first time I saw the film I think I missed out
          that last scene.
          As a woman watching it is difficult to pin down your
          feelings about the behaviour and the rape. I couldn't help
          feeling that the character is foolish and moreover very
          short-sighted in her behaviour. It's not a moral crime
          though, it's just someone being careless about the way they
          appear for one night.
          The rapes are so violent and vile and destroying though that
          you are shocked into realising just how messed up these men
          are: having a hard-on is one thing, not being able to
          recognise, or rather ignoring a terrified woman begging for
          mercy is another.
          For me I realised that the reason I earlier felt her
          behaviour was careless wasn't anything to do with her, it
          was to do with the fact that she lives in a world where a
          woman has to guard herself against *some* men who choose not
          to see a woman with an obvious sexuality as a woman with
          feelings and emotions as well.
          I think it's an important film as it certainly does
          challenge a lot of deep-seated ideas and prejudices and
          presents the rape of a 'real' woman. It's easy to get
          sympathetic about a quiet housewife and mother being raped
          but when a viewer is presented with the character in the
          Accused they have to really question their feelings.
          So, although I'm still not fully decided on whether that
          final scene needs to be quite so graphic and uncomfortable
          for the viewer, I do on the other hand feel it's vital that
          the message of the destroying, invasive nature of rape is
          hammered into the audiences minds. The danger of an audience
          walking away thinking 'she asked for it' is far too great.
          However I can't quite sit comfortably with the voyeurism in
          this last scene; perhaps though to feel so uncomfortable as
          a viewer helps us to empathise with the character?
          Is it a good film? It's an important, thought-provoking film
          and that's good. Makes me think of another great film that
          uses violence  - Mike Leigh's 'Naked', anyone got any
          thoughts on the violence and cruelty in that film?
          Sorry for the length of this first posting!
To signoff SCREEN-L, e-mail [log in to unmask] and put SIGNOFF SCREEN-L
in the message.  Problems?  Contact [log in to unmask]