1. Welcome to Religious Forums, a friendly forum to discuss all religions in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Our modern chat room. No add-ons or extensions required, just login and start chatting!
    • Access to private conversations with other members.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Why Not Sexualized Female Movie Characters?

Discussion in 'Ethics and Morals' started by Skwim, Jan 12, 2018.

  1. Skwim

    Skwim Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    Messages:
    19,995
    Ratings:
    +5,866
    Religion:
    Agnostic
    I ask this because I came across the following video on YouTube


    Watch it. Don't watch it. It's premise should be obvious; its producer, WatchMojo.com, doesn't believe female movie characters should be sexualized---or at least that's what it would like you to believe---although it never says why. At most it simply asks, "Is it really necessary?"

    My only comment is, so what if Sexualized Female Movie Characters aren't necessary?

    .
     
  2. beenherebeforeagain

    beenherebeforeagain Rogue Animist
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2011
    Messages:
    11,767
    Ratings:
    +3,572
    Religion:
    Modern Animist
    Are there sexualized male movie characters? If not, why not? And if there are--Why? Are they sexualized in the same way (e.g., gratuitous nudity), and for the same purposes (e.g., increasing box office revenue)?
     
    • Like Like x 3
  3. Buddha Dharma

    Buddha Dharma Devoted to Ahimsa and Bodhicitta

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2017
    Messages:
    230
    Ratings:
    +136
    Religion:
    Tendai Buddhism/Mahayana
    I am okay with sexualized characters. I guess what I'm really not okay with is how corporations have made many women believe being objectified is being successful. In other words, it has been harmful to women actually being successful with good careers, equal pay, etc. Even if we can point to successful women, there's still an idea of women as objectified, including that they're almost expected to treat themselves that way. Women are expected to 'look pretty', wear certain clothing, and the like. I'm aware this is probably a little off your original point.

    No issue with sexualized characters though. I wouldn't personally watch certain things, but it's a choice.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  4. BSM1

    BSM1 Who's a good boy?

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2012
    Messages:
    11,316
    Ratings:
    +4,554
    Religion:
    Buddhistic Panenthetic Jesusonian
    I think we've evolved to the point where we can concentrate more on their sammich making abilities...
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Funny Funny x 1
  5. Subduction Zone

    Subduction Zone Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2017
    Messages:
    2,134
    Ratings:
    +1,427
    Religion:
    Atheist

    I can't say. You would need to ask a woman or a gay guy. Who do they find "yummy". A bit of gratuitous sex does not bother me in the least. And it can help the movie. I remember many years ago when a friend of mine reported back on watching Titanic with his wife. He was getting rather bored, it was pretty much a romance that was aimed at women more than men. Then there was the topless scene in the middle of the movie. A totally gratuitous flash of breasts. But that one scene piqued his interest and he got back into the film.
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Funny Funny x 1
  6. SomeRandom

    SomeRandom Still learning to be wise

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2014
    Messages:
    3,814
    Ratings:
    +2,824
    Off the top of my head James Bond, anything Alexander Skarsgard is in, Twilight, 50 Shades of Grey, multiple chick flick romances, one could even argue any modern superhero movie. Hell TV shows like True Blood, Vampire Diaries and even to an extent Buffy/Angel are a veritable model runway of hunky guys.
    We have our beefcake movies but women do like a personality as well. So that might not always be a big draw as much as sexy women. That said I mostly grew up on various gritty European movies so Hollywood's idea of sexuality seems rather quaint to me.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Skwim

    Skwim Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    Messages:
    19,995
    Ratings:
    +5,866
    Religion:
    Agnostic
    For one thing, males rate physical attractiveness of the opposite sex more important than do females of males (for females, they rate earning capability and social standing more highly than do males). Moreover, female breasts are a significant factor in female attractiveness to males, whereas male breasts are not a significant factor for females. The upshot: men enjoy looking at scantily clad, even partially or fully naked females more than do females enjoy looking at scantily clad, even partially or fully naked males.

    .
     
    #7 Skwim, Jan 12, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
    • Like Like x 3
  8. BSM1

    BSM1 Who's a good boy?

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2012
    Messages:
    11,316
    Ratings:
    +4,554
    Religion:
    Buddhistic Panenthetic Jesusonian
    ...and, unfortunately, size does matter. Uhh...of course it's not a concern for me...*cough* *cough*
     
  9. ADigitalArtist

    ADigitalArtist Well-Known Member
    Staff Member Premium Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2015
    Messages:
    3,556
    Ratings:
    +3,532
    Religion:
    Irreligious Agnostic Atheistic Apatheist
    Sexy women don't bother me, be sexy badasses.

    I'm more concerned with female representation. Men in movies don't have to be studly muffins to get work, and they don't have to be young. There are old, fat, gangly, small men in the biz who make buttloads more cash than their female counterparts of the same non-ideal body types. Oversexualization of women in movies really means less options for actors, and less roles for women to relate to.
     
    • Like Like x 3
  10. Jumi

    Jumi Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2014
    Messages:
    5,515
    Ratings:
    +2,741
    Religion:
    Pure monotheism
    There hasn't ever been any western film where I've related to a character that's male from their appearance and only once with their thoughts. There was only one role of Matt Damon where I felt the character had something relatable thought patterns. I guess this is why I almost never watch films.
     
  11. Srivijaya

    Srivijaya Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2017
    Messages:
    189
    Ratings:
    +174
    Religion:
    Buddhist with a strong affinity for non-dual Shaivism
    I think it's difficult to generalise but some of the examples were unnecessary. Back in the day I remember seeing Princess Leia in the skimpy slaves outfit and feeling that it was out of place for her character. Just felt wrong. I guess because I never saw her in a sexual way.
    In the first movie she was the only character who really knew how bad things were and she took this burden upon herself when she knew what it would cost her. I saw her as a very courageous and noble character.

    Some of the other examples were only included to sex-up the movie for entertainment/revenue purposes. Others were key 'sexualised' characters but would they have worked so well otherwise? Who knows.

    As to your question; what if Sexualized Female Movie Characters aren't necessary? There are plenty of top-rate films without any such characters, so great movies can be made without the necessity of including them. Other films probably need them to work. Context I suppose.

    I guess my own preference doesn't preclude female characters having a splash of sex appeal to them but I'm more held by complex and deep characters. "Obvious" just gets boring.
     
    #11 Srivijaya, Jan 13, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
  12. BSM1

    BSM1 Who's a good boy?

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2012
    Messages:
    11,316
    Ratings:
    +4,554
    Religion:
    Buddhistic Panenthetic Jesusonian

    Ooohh! Slave girl Princess Leia...! Oh, sorry. Did I think that out loud?
     
    • Funny Funny x 1
  13. Skwim

    Skwim Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    Messages:
    19,995
    Ratings:
    +5,866
    Religion:
    Agnostic
    Leia was in a "skimpy"---actually, nothing more revealing than a bikini---costume because she was emulating a harem slave girl, which, I might point out, were often depicted with bare breasts, and sometimes completely naked. So I think her costume was quite appropriate.

    .
     
  14. beenherebeforeagain

    beenherebeforeagain Rogue Animist
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2011
    Messages:
    11,767
    Ratings:
    +3,572
    Religion:
    Modern Animist
    While I thought the Princess Leia slave-girl outfit was a bit more than needed, it did also fit the treatment that Jabba would see as appropriate.

    But I think to other movies...Would Casablanca have been improved by Ingrid Bergman running around in her underwear (Yes, I probably would have liked to see more of her), but would it make the relationship any clearer? Or a love scene between Bogie and Bergman? (Yes, again...but does it improve the story?)

    Would North by Northwest have been better if Eva Marie Saint and Cary Grant had a little love scene? How would that scene have improved the story, over the suggestion of their dinner conversation and her note to James Mason about what she should do with him?

    Some dramas might appropriately include partial or full nudity, even sex scenes, and definitely many comedies could and do--and perhaps should...but again, how much is really needed? It depends on the context of the story being told.
     
  15. Skwim

    Skwim Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    Messages:
    19,995
    Ratings:
    +5,866
    Religion:
    Agnostic
    It isn't that unnecessary sexualization doesn't improve the story, being unnecessary, that's a given, but the claim that it shouldn't occur at all because it isn't necessary to the story. As I pointed out, a lot of unnecessary stuff happens in movies, but why pick on unnecessary sexualization, instead of, say, three minutes of screeching tires? My opinion is that people are still uptight about sex. That they have yet to come to terms with it.

    There are a lot of elements that could qualify as unnecessary in a story, and may not improve it. However, improvement is not what I'm talking about.

    The issue isn't about need, but the merit of sexualization being unnecessary. I don't believe there is any such merit: So what if the sexualization is unnecessary, unless, that is, it hurts the story.

    One of the examples given in the video is the character Leeloo, who is depicted In "The Fifth Element" wearing "a series of bandages that reveal more skin than they cover up." Does it hurt the story? No.

    And in "Swordfish" where Halle Berry is shown reading a book topless. Does it hurt the story? No.

    Want to appeal to my voyeuristic interests? Why thank you mister movie maker.
    Don't want to appeal to my voyeuristic interests? Okey dokey. That's quite alright.



    .
     
    #15 Skwim, Jan 13, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
  16. beenherebeforeagain

    beenherebeforeagain Rogue Animist
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2011
    Messages:
    11,767
    Ratings:
    +3,572
    Religion:
    Modern Animist
    Okay, so you're saying that the unnecessary sexualization has a reason behind it that justifies it, and I certainly agree with that, no problem, and I agree that people (mostly Americans) are prudes. Something like a person coming out of the shower or sitting reading a book NAKED is not really sexualization, as it reflects what millions of people do every day.

    the presence of unnecessary sex, foul language, gun fire, chase scenes, etc., are why I don't watch a lot of movies and TV shows, reflecting my preference for quality vs. quantity, perhaps--even if America is too prudish and needs to get over stuff.

    I've been increasingly disappointed in the Star Wars saga, for example, because it has become so formulaic: "first, someone is moody, and now there's a light saber battle, then some dialog and D2D2 and BB8 do cute stuff, then we have an even bigger battle between star ships and stunt fighters (than we've ever had before)," and on and on...

    More and more special effects, or gratuitous violence and gore, more and more explosions and car chases because, gee willikers, we just can't come up with an original story or fill up the time or generate enough viewers and revenue otherwise.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  17. Srivijaya

    Srivijaya Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2017
    Messages:
    189
    Ratings:
    +174
    Religion:
    Buddhist with a strong affinity for non-dual Shaivism
    I get the context argument. It was part of the plot. It fitted. Logically.

    Still didn't 'feel' right though and I'm not a prude.
     
  18. Skwim

    Skwim Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    Messages:
    19,995
    Ratings:
    +5,866
    Religion:
    Agnostic
    I agree. Original stories seem harder to come by all the time. Take "The shop around the corner" (1940) which was remade as

    "In the Good Old Summertime" (1949),
    "She Loves Me" Broadway musical (1963)
    "You've Got Mail (1998),

    Or The lodger (1927) that was remade as

    The Lodger (1932)
    The Lodger (1944)
    Man in the Attic (1953)
    The Lodger (2009)

    .

    .
     
    #18 Skwim, Jan 13, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
    • Like Like x 1
  19. beenherebeforeagain

    beenherebeforeagain Rogue Animist
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2011
    Messages:
    11,767
    Ratings:
    +3,572
    Religion:
    Modern Animist
    Don't mind remakes so much, if they'd actually leave some time between them...However, the Batman movies seem to reboot about every third year...:p
     
  20. SomeRandom

    SomeRandom Still learning to be wise

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2014
    Messages:
    3,814
    Ratings:
    +2,824
    It's not supposed to feel right. That's the point!! Jabba is a mild antagonist. You're not supposed to think his actions are right or good. That's the entire point of having an antagonist.
     
Loading...