Gender in Contemporary Irish Cinema Essay Sample, Ireland
The following essay sample work shall highlight gender in contemporary Irish cinema. This sample shall discuss masculinity in contemporary Irish cinema and the role of women in contemporary Irish cinema.
Contemporary cinema focuses upon the latest trend, culture, theory, and industry. It includes a certain class of films which are being produced for more than a decade in the past in the country. It reflects upon important current issues and opinions of certain classes of people in society.
There is a growing modern trend of showing sexuality and gender in contemporary cinema around the globe. From the mid-1990s the Irish cinema went through a radical change from historical to contemporary cinema getting universal.
This shift of cinematic content transformed the way feminity and masculinity could be seen in society.
Masculinity in the Contemporary Irish Cinema
There has been a transition in Irish films in the recent past as it revolves around the radical configuration of cinematic masculinity. Such cinematic masculinity is not only in terms of representation of male characters but also masculinity as the discourse was being addressed.
This new era of the contemporary making of cinema made way to male-centered narratives and protagonists resisting unequivocal ideological categorization.
Earlier the traditional cinema was more politically emerging and noncommercial in Ireland. There is a new trend of filming male-themed and male-oriented cinema which preoccupies criminal, socially marginalized masculinities, and the underclass.
Such male protagonists are reaching heights in Irish cinema. However, in recent years there has been a wave of films that are based in middle-class milieux featuring sexually fluid, nonnormative characters along with reconstructed masculinity.
About Adam, Goldfish Memory, and When Brendan Met Trudy became some of the underclass rebels which became the definition of masculinity in contemporary Irish cinema.
There is a very popular range of films over the past decade. Some of them were (1) Monk (2000), (2) Sconce (2003), (3) Pfeil (1996), (4) Greven (2003). Most of these films revolve around crimes and social exclusion which features as well sympathetic antiheroes who are active criminals and marginalized.
There is a growing trend of such underclass rebel and neo-gangster-based movies rather than highlighting the social and economic specificities of modern Ireland.
Some other films that were made in Ireland include Saltwater, The General, Flick, Intermission, Adam and Paul and Man About Dog, Crushproof, Accelerator. Most of these films have been a commercial success. Films like Crushproof and Accelerator gained popularity in the male audience.
Irish cinema has grown and has become accomodating enough to accept different genres and styles increasing the diversity in film making business. The portrayal of modern Irish masculinity is not only less culturally specific but also less critical of hegemonic masculinity.
The traditional elements of masculinity such as involvement in crime, display of excessive drinking have been restructured in the form of an underclass rebel. Antiheroes appear to be angry, resistant, and conflict in the face of social transformations.
Masculinities on display in Irish cinema are not static and homogeneous rather they constitute a cohesive discourse on masculinity that articulate within social, economic, and gender specificities.
Role of Women in the Contemporary Irish Cinema
The Dublin Feminist Film Festival displays the work of female directors in a particular field. The International Organization Women in Film and Television (WIFT) aims at supporting women in the industry by addressing their issues of equal pay. It also supports women through a networking platform that was launched in Dublin.
Women are not as active as men in the field of film-making business as only 5% of the directors of big-budget films are women. In Ireland, there is only 13% of Irish (funded) films are written by women. There is a sense of discontent and frustration amongst the Irish women in cinema as there are only a few women who are making films.
Although from the past three decades there has been an increase in the number of women producers, editors, and designers but only a few are contributing as directors and cinematographers.
Women characters in the films are mostly weak and are treated mostly as secondary characters. They need to play more complex characters which will display even the women narratives and women writers can address the issues related to women in an expressed way.
Making documentary films is an area that has been mastered by Irish women and there are many well-written documentaries by popular Irish women.
The launch of the WIFT Ireland and Feminist Film Festival has brought many positive changes where women support each other in Irish cinema. Here women can prove their merit in creativity and arts by pushing their boundaries.
For gender equality in cinema, the funding needs to be improved. Funding and training encourage new young budding talented people and women of all ages to gather an audience on screen.
Film Fund has certain criteria in relation to sexual orientation, gender, socio-economic status, and ethnicity to apply for funding. This has been introduced to promote diversity within the TV industry and films.
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