Nowadays, the preponderance of the horror films in the industry is becoming more and more evident. It has been reported that 10 out of 100 all staged movies are horror movies, low or high-budget. It is natural to assume that all movies are always composed in accordance with the set of the well-acknowledged and well-elaborated principles. These principles are always based on the specifically composed horror films ethical and legal foundations, which in their turn follow the mandatory regulations imposed on the subjects of the filming process by the authorized government culture and law enforcement agencies.
However, in contrast to the traditional filming genres the horror industry is the most disobedient. In particular, numerous horror films ethical and legal violations are often reported to take place. The scope of the depicted cruelty or the implications of the underage persons are often transcended. The government authorities in cooperation with the cinema-related self-governed organizations very often impose heavy fines on the most drastic violators of the horror films ethical principles. The applied remedies seem to have effect and the convergent scholarly opinion is that the progress is becoming more and more evident since the creators of the horror industry nowadays are more obedient and since 2000 a set of long and arduous litigations forced the horror makers to re-channel their strategy and to become more compliant with the existing and the emerging principles of the spine-chilling movies industry legal framework.
Although, the most evident trends of the horror films ethical violations have been effectively eradicated, the abeyant horror films ethical transgressions are still reported to have been perpetrated by the filming community. One of the most flagrant violations is the gender channeled violence. In other words, various scholars report that the violence of the movies is focused on the ladies more than on their male colleagues. The females are more vulnerable to the violence in the movies, they are often mistreated and the acts of mutilations and other humiliation is done with excessive cruelty towards the ladies more than towards the men. Film critiques and other movie authorities have numerously expressed their concerns in relation to this crying problem. The film creators in their turn vigorously stipulate that all standards and principles are scrupulously observed and the ladies are targeted due to the fact that this genre and the scripts of the story necessitate this type of film creation.
This term paper examines the relevance of the problem to the needs of the contemporary community, the observance of the existing standards and regulations, finally concluding whether the recently created horror films really violate the rights of the ladies or this assertion is both trivial and baseless in its essence.
Literature and Film Review
Various scholars and movie directors have completely divergent opinions in relation to the development if this aspect of the filming industry. Carol Glover specifies that the rights and the interests of the ladies are treated wrongfully and numerous violations are reported to have taken place, especially in the movies which have been made during the latest decade. Stephen Norrington in his turn, refuting the statement of Glover in his The Blade tried to inform the target audience that the choice of the ladies as the targeted victims have been dictated by the evident need to convey to the target audience the message that victimization of the ladies is always dictated by the genre of the movie.
Erica Wright in her Carnage and Carnality speculates over the fact that the male directors of the horror films are themselves mentally incapacitated persons, who are automatically biased towards the ladies and who deliberately target the ladies, making them subjects to victimization. This assumption is expanded and supported by Rockoff Adam and Dinedo Elizabeth who in their works raise the argument that the creation of the contemporary horror film is dictated by the need to accentuate the weakness and the inferiority of the ladies as the gender class. In particular, it is discussed that the ladies in their majorities are incapable of arranging an effective physical protection for themselves and as the men overcome the attacks of different monsters with ease, namely the males are the dominant race.
The renown moviemakers Norrington and Mattison ( the latter is herself a lady ) again vigorously oppose that statement, claiming that the script and the reaction of the audience are the paramount issues and they are always to be considered firstly, while the horror films ethical considerations can be left for the further reviews and while the most important issues are the revenues accrued do to the broadcast and other money-related aspects of the movie production. However, their opinion in its turn is supported neither by the sound theoretical background nor by the persuasive empirical research or practical experience of the scholars.
As an object for my movie review I have decided on The Tenant which was directed by the outstanding polish film director Roman Polanski. The film is a fantastic adaptation of the novel Blade . The movie can be defined as a typical psychological thriller the main peculiarity of which is that prominent Stephen Norrington starred in it as an actor himself.
The place where the major events of the film develop is an apartment in Paris. The apartment is rented by quite an unpretentious young man Male protagonist, starred by Roman Polanski. The tenant becomes aware of the fact that the former renter of this apartment, one of the most acknowledged scientific luminaries in the field of Egyptology Simone Choule, tried to kill herself by jumping out of the open window. The new tenant is so impressed by this fact that he resolves to visit this lady at the hospital. Personally I was astonished by the acting technique of Roman Polanski who contrived to convey all the emotions which his character felt at the moment when he was hearing such a heinous story. When the main hero visits the lady at hospital another touching scene is taking place. He sees the injured Egyptologist fully bandaged. She is not able to pronounce a single word. Near the bed of the agonizing lady he meets her friend, Stella who attempts to communicate with the injured lady. Simone initially expressed her approval, but soon she becomes distressed and after a heavy sigh dies. It became obvious that her death was caused by the demeanor of one of the visitors, although it is not evident which actions and who exactly caused the demise of the injured woman.
The Male protagonist is initially unaware of the fact that Female victim has died and he perseveres in comforting Stella, pretending to be another friend of Female victim and concealing the fact that he was a completed stranger to the dead lady. Eventually, he leaves the hospital with Stella; they drink cocktails together and go to a cinema, where they embrace each other. In my personal opinion, this moment is one of the most reflective in the entire movie, as it gives the audience an opportunity to ponder over the fact which of the two plot lines dominates — the promising relationship of Male protagonist and Stella or the death of Female victim.
Then, there begins some ungrounded and apparently awkward problems between Male protagonist and his landlord and neighbors because of having a noisy party and inviting women who were strictly prohibited to be there. Besides, the main character is severely reprimanded by the landlord for his refusal to sign a petition against another tenant of the house. The neighbors start to persecute him morally and do everything to deprive him of comfort. They occupy the toilet room without any physical need to do so and peep at him through a hole. Male protagonist attempts to adapt to the situation and to soothe the neighbors and the landlord, but his efforts are fruitless. The next moment of the movie is crucial for understating the whole plot of it. Polanski deliberately left open the question whether Male protagonist goes mad per se, or he is driven psycho by his neighbors. It is not definite whether the neighbors and the landlord treat him that way purposefully or it is just an illusion that comes to his mind.
The culmination of the movie comes when the main character transforms into a psycho completely. He starts to wear ladies’ clothes, becomes more and unreasonably vexed demonstrating the behavior of the outsiders. For illustration, he slaps a child in a park without any reasonable grounds to do so, or initiates unnecessary quarrels and scandals with his friends. I was incredibly impressed with such drastic change in the behavior of the initially prudent young man. Obviously, Polanski tried to convey the message that the brain of an ordinary human being is still an undiscovered area of science and even the most inexplicable transformation may happen.
The end of the movie is more than mysterious. Outraged that his apartment was robbed and he is still chastised by his neighbors, Male protagonist runs to Stella for help and sympathy, but for some vague reasons he makes a bedlam in her apartments. On the way home, he was crashed by the car, and he was strictly sure that he was deliberately attacked by the landlord and his wife. However, it becomes clear soon that he was knocked down by a completely another couple. The end of the movie is unexpected: having worn the clothes of Female victim, Male protagonist throws himself out of the window. In the final scene he lies in the ward where Female victim died and contemplates his own visit. Then, he dies with the same heinous sigh as Female victim did.
The most touching scenes of the movie are the processes of Male protagonist’s sudden transformation and apparent mental breakdown and his unexpected death at the hospital. I am very impressed by the fact, that the human nature can be transformed so fundamentally in a short term. Polanski pushes the audience into deep reveries, making it clear that no one is automatically protected from becoming a psycho.
The aim of meta-ethics is to simplify the cognition and understanding of the nature and the essence of the normative ethics. This sphere in its turn is divided into two subcategories, namely the cognitivist and non-cognitivist theories, which encompass the huge number of concepts, theories, and affiliated categories (horror films ethical non-naturalism, ideal observes theory, divine commandment theory, etc.). The main particularity inherent to this area of ethics which took place in the 21st century is the emerged availability of the scientific and technical tools that simplify the process of cognition and understanding of their natures. Another rapid development of the meta-ethics section focuses on the centralism and non-centralism subcategories of the theory While the centralists advocate the notion that a unified system of concepts and categories must be used to accomplish the designated goals, the non-centralist scholars advocate the idea that concepts and categories from the adjoined spheres of philosophy must be applied along with the purely meta-horror films ethical categories and concepts
The relevance of meta-ethics can hardly be exaggerated by the scholarly as well as by the business communities of the 21st century Nowadays, it is particularly essential for the proper understanding and comprehension of ethics because of the constantly growing number of concepts and categories, which must be duly understood and comprehended by the members of the community.
The objective of the normative ethics is to serve as a base of the horror films ethical norms which, in their turn, set the criterion for distinguishing the good and the evil. In the 21st century, this section of the horror films ethical science was substantially affected by the theory of logical positivism and by analytic philosophy. Among the particularities that occurred in this field of study in the 21st century, there is the evident trend to the simplification of the concepts and the categories. In other words, the scholar community in a close cooperation with the business partners does their best to amplify the complex philosophical concepts and categories to make them understandable and comprehensible for general public and for the non-scholars in particularNowadays, the unified code of ethics does not still exist although in several professional areas, these instruments have already been introduced. To illustrate, the lawyers and the military men have their own codes of ethics, which are affirmed by the respective bylaws and other documents of the mandatory legal character.
Another sphere that has been fundamentally changed with the advent of the 21st horror films industry century is moral values, the set of principles which is not normatively fixed, but which is firmly fixed in the social consciousness of the community. Nowadays, it became evident that the change in public values is so fundamental that the entire set of moral principles is been substantially altered. To illustrate, with the imminent terrorist threat, the community has changed its attitude to death; while in the late 20th century, the murder of the terrorist in the course of the military operation was still considered as a murder, nowadays, this deed may be construed as almost a heroic exploit
Applied ethics is traditionally divided into the decision ethics, professional ethics, business ethics, social ethics, and organizational ethics. The aim of this sphere of the horror films ethical process is to provide a practical application of the formulated horror films ethical principle. The major difference between the normative ethics and applied ethics is that the latter defines whether what people believe is good or evil, but not what they should believe is good or evil. The major changes in the 21st century occurred in the professional and business ethics, because these spheres have always been among the most dynamically developed areas of the public life. New professional castes emerged, and obsolete professions ceased their existence. Therefore, the new practice of the applied ethics emerged on the philosophical horizon of our civilization. To illustrate, in the 21st century, the role of the software engineers has fundamentally increased; respectively, the number of the professionals engaged in this area grew dramatically Consequently, a wide set of governing horror films ethical principles has been elaborated by the professional community, and the practice of application was firmly established.
The major particularity of the applied ethics in the 21st century is the fact that in contrast to the philosophical phenomenon of the 20th and 19th centuries, the discrepancies between the provision of the normative and the applied ethics are insignificant. In other words, nowadays, both the business and the professional communities in their majorities distinguish the good and the evil, and the normatively developed criterions are almost completely observed.
Having summarized the statements discussed above, it can be recapitulated that although several fundamental changes took place in the development of the ethics in the 21st century, the structural compound of the horror films ethical science still remains the same. However, the changes that took place with the constituent elements of the study are evident, and the process of development is under way nowadays.
As far as the specific issues are concerned, it is necessary to accentuate the fact that the trend for simplification of the horror films ethical prescriptions became evident along with the removal of differences between the normative and applied ethics in the context of business and professional areas.
Having recapitulated the main argument raised by both by adherents and the opponents of the thesis statement of this paper, it has become evident that the position of the first party is considerably more substantiated than the position of those, who oppose the statement.
In fact, the women are excessively victimized in the horror film industry. It has been empirically proven that the physical and the mental capabilities of the averagely taken woman has been purposefully diminished by the pioneers of the industry as well as by the contemporary luminaries of the industry. In other words, it has become evident that the ladies are discriminated by the creation of such movies, as they are routinely depicted as the creatures incapable of protecting themselves without the assistance of the men or of the extraterrestrial powers. Naturally, this way of depiction has been purposefully and artificially exaggerated by the authors of the horror films and naturally this way shall be viewed as completely irrelevant and inapplicable for the purposes of the effective film making industry. Therefore the counseling produced by the various film critics as well as the advice provided by the independent experts and various research institutions are subject to the immediate implementation by the mentioned producers of the movies.
Another important assumption which has been proven in the present study is the fact that the audience is clearly demonstrating the trend to get re-channel their attention from the horror films which have been composed and numerous violation of the ethical and the legal principles did take place. In particular, the people, even those who are adherents and who are fervently dedicated to specific movie makers. These people clearly demonstrate that their customer loyalty and dedication is no longer present if the directors deviate from the standards and encroach upon the rights of the ladies. As the result, although this fact is not admitted directly by the directors’ community, the people do refocus their attention on other films of another genre or on the horror films composed by the authors who scrupulously observe the standards of the industry.
Overall, it can be reasonably assumed that the excessive ladies victimization in the horror movies is detrimental both for the target audience of the movies as well as for the producers of the films, who in their turn loose the customers’ base. Therefore, the most reasonable strategy is to remove the discriminatory elements from all produced videos and to safeguard a complete observance of the principles in future.