Feminist Criticism

Teen girls and the movie makeover

Personally, and undeniably, I AM a fan of the ole ‘chick flick’. They provide a (yes, ok clichéd) recipe for an enjoyable film. I’ve come, in my vast experience, to notice the classic ingredients-romance, angst, friendship and, YES, more often than not, a makeover.

What are my thoughts on this, I hear you cry…WELL. Firstly, as a young woman, who believes we live in a society that unfortunately bases everyone on appearance; I generally find the reactions depressing, the reasons behind the transformation questionable (especially as it is mostly inflicted in order to impress/satisfy someone, rather than their own desire). It always makes SUCH a huge difference to the (most of the time) female, usually accomplishing something MASSIVE like WINNING A HOT DUDE or GETTING POPULAR or, do I dare say it, PROM QUEEN!!!!!!!! (*shrill tones of a stereotypical teenage girl*)

What happened to beauty from within? Isn’t sassiness enough?

Here’s a list of some classic makeover scenes (WHICH I LOVE DEARLY):

GREASE

I admit Sandy looks pretty bad ass after, but the scenario has always confused me. Does she really need to change her image for someone she likes or to fit in? I find this scene tragic. Goodbye Sandra Dee.

SHE’S ALL THAT

I find it OFFENSIVE the young Freddie Prince Jr has the balls to change the way this super cool girl looks in order for her to fit the role of prom queen. What the fuck?!?! Is that not grotesque?  Chop her hair (!!), put her in some lingerie and she is fit to be popular? And maybe even ATTRACTIVE? But no. Director, Robert Iscove feels the need to take it that bit further and put poor Lacey in her place.  By falling down the stairs we, as an audience, remember. Yes, she is still an ‘inferior’.

PRINCESS DIARIES

A CLASSIC. She doesn’t conform to a physical stereotype. SO LET’S CHANGE HER. As a sad and straight haired young woman, this scene distresses me.  (Huge appreciation for the Frida Kahlo reference though)

MY FAIR LADY

Perhaps the most classic and classy of them all. Pretty much follows the formula-objectifying and glorious at the same time.

EASY A

A self-imposed and ironic makeover-NOW THAT’S WHAT I LIKE TO HEAR (/SEE). I truly admire Olive’s balls in this film although yes, as with the others, it brings along some shit.

So even though makeovers are fun to watch and occasionally even do to ourselves, we need to stop placing such strong beliefs upon girls that their appearance is the most important aspect in their life.

by Zoe

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