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Heathers and Shame

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 06:11 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 62.2 
  • Words: 2474
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Throughout time the concept of gender and the corruption of power associated with it has been a very evident problem within society. Many texts have been designed to expose these issues and in particular the feature films’ Heathers, directed by Michael Lehman and Shame, by Steve Jodrell. Both these films have been heavily constructed in order to position us as the audience to take a very negative response towards the concepts of power and gender and further an ‘anti-conform’ attitude. Techniques such as narrative elements and codes and conventions have been used to mould these ideas and attitudes within the texts.

Both the films Heathers and Shame can be deemed to be modern day Westerns however are quite subverted. They both develop the idea that conformity leads to tragic consequences. Heathers is set in an American high school, Westerburg, in 1988 and attacks the idea of a high school hierarchy, where four girls particularly one, Heather Chandler, has the power within the school. On the arrival of a new student, Jason Dean, Veronica, one of the four girls breaks away and conforms to Jason. As a result she is led to kill Heather Chandler and later the ‘footy jocks’ to make their school a better place. Shame on the other hand is set in a small outback, Western Australian country town, Ginobrak, in 1987. It deals with the issues of a small town mentality and that ‘boys will be boys’. As result of these concepts and issues, many young girls were raped and the town accepted this. As Asta, an outsider coming into town, stumbles across these rappings’, she helps and encourages a young girl, Lizzie to face the boys and lay legal charges. In both texts it takes and outsider the ‘hero’ figure to expose the corruption and help in acting as a catalyst to change.

Gender relationships are a very explored issue within these texts. In a majority, anyone no matter if they are male or female who do not fit in or do not conform to stereotypes...


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