In a movie that you have watched recently, was there a hero somewhere in the movie? Was there a relation to that hero in any way? Did the movie connect to you in because of the hero? Many movies that are watched today include heroes; maybe they are geeks or not in the popular crowd, and maybe they are Just ordinary people that grow up to become something greater. Whichever category the hero of a movie falls under, a relation between the hero and the viewer is formed.
Whether the hero s popular or not, they can be found in different scenarios: reality TV or stories that have a deeper meaning. The articles “Creating the Myth” by Linda Serer and “High- School Confidential: Notes on Teen Movies” by David Denny contain information about heroes, how they relate to the viewers, but appear in stories that have different meanings. Blonde, skinny, and popular girls. In movies, those kind of girls that have it all, the good looks and the mean personality, they are known as the villain. What is the hero then?
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Movies portray the hero to be the geek, or the awkward one that lacks popularity. They also may feel like outsiders. In Denies article, he acknowledges the fact that the outsiders are the ones that grow up to be successful. “… Has powers, and will someday be a success, an artist, a screenwriter. It’s the wound and the bow all over again” (Denny 399). Although the heroes may be successful, bad things happen to them. For example, the Littleton shooters. The shooters were two smart teens that felt like outsiders; in their future, they could have been very successful men.
Some teens that have that outsider feeling may be missing a parent, or get lulled but those unfortunate things help them to grow into something successful. Heroes in movies don’t always have to be the outsiders though. In Eager’s article about myths, or “more than true stories”, she states “In most hero stories, the hero is introduced in ordinary surroundings, in a mundane world, doing mundane things” (357). Just like Denies article, there is a hero; that hero is an ordinary person, much like the geek or the outsider was.
Also, Just like the geek or the outsider, the hero of the myth grows to be more. “The Journey toward heroism is a process” (Serer 357). The hero starts off as a character who is ordinary and then after he/she goes through an adventure becomes extraordinary. What helps them become extraordinary is the shadow figure, or bad guy. The shadow figure helps the hero become more, Just like the outsider missing a parent becomes successful. Movies contain heroes because the audience identifies to them, or thinks that they are emotionally satisfactory.
According to Denny, “movies wouldn’t survive if they didn’t provide emotional satisfaction to the people who make them and to the audiences who watch them” (397). With a movie including a hero, the attention of the audience is captured. In some way, shape, or form, a relation is formed with the hero or the movie. It could Just be that you want the hero to grow up and be successful, or maybe the outsider gets the prince. Emotionally, viewers feel what is going on. “When the gangster dies, he cleanses viewers of their own negative feelings” (Denny 397).
A relation is not only formed during teen movies but during myths also. Myths, too, contain heroes. The heroes are different than in teen movies, but they gain the attention of the audience. In Eager’s article, it establishes that myths are based on basic Journeys that people in the world take. Because myths are based on “more than true” stories, “We identify with the heroes because we were once heroic (descriptive) or because we wish we could do what the hero does (prescriptive)” (356).
Denies article and Eager’s article both gain the audiences’ attention by forming an emotional relation or a descriptive or prescriptive relation with the hero. When looking at a teen movie, something unnoticeable is the fact that a winner and a loser is established. The outsider or the hero become successful whereas the villain or the popular girl may not have that much success. Denny writes “it may attack the instruments ethos that produces winners and losers, but in the end it confirms what it is attacking” (400). Also, teen movies relate to reality in a way that may be noticeable either.
When entering a school lunch room, cliques are all around. You got the popular kids, the nerds, and maybe even an outsider. Teen movies are a reflection of reality. Unlike Denies article that relates to reality, Eager’s article has a deeper story. “It is a story that connects and speaks to us all” (Serer 357). Once again, myths are “more than true” stories. With this definition, myths could reflect reality, but in a way different than in Denies article. The stories in Eager’s articles “come from our own experiences of overcoming adversity, as well as our desire to do great and special acts” (357).
But myths have a deeper story because not everyone has lived that story. They are more personal to the audience. The story connects to some people differently than it connects to others. They have “a story within the story’ (Serer 364). Teen movies have a hero that is an outsider and becomes successful. In the same way, myths have heroes that go from ordinary to extraordinary. Whether the movie is a teen movie or a myth though, the audience connects to the story in some way. But, myths have a deeper story and teen movies reflect reality with having a winner and a loser.