Home > Uncategorized > Blog #2: Media & Ideology

Blog #2: Media & Ideology

One bias in our culture that I noticed in many films is how wealth is achieved and valued in our society. Many movies that have recently come out demonstrate an underdog who defies the odds and becomes successful and wealthy. These types of movies demonstrate that through hard work, dedication, perseverance and believing in themselves the American dream can be achieved and that any hard obstacles can be overcome. These movies seemed to have become very prevalent in the past decade due to the economic recession that America has been going through during the 2000’s. During this time, many individuals in our society lost almost everything they had. When this happened this shattered the confidence and belief that many people had in themselves as well as in the American economy.  Some movies that demonstrate these rags to riches stories are The Pursuit of Happiness, Notorious and the Blindside. Within these movies the main characters start out with virtually nothing but deify the odds and become extremely successful through hard work and dedication.

 

In the Pursuit of Happiness, The main character, Chris Gardner, starts out by investing his family’s savings into a product that eventually fails. He eventually becomes homeless and through dedication, hard work, and the love he has for his son, he is able to gain an internship with a brokerage firm and eventually gains a full time job there. Later he ends up starting his own multi-million dollar brokerage firm. This type of story inspires people who have almost nothing that they can achieve anything if they believe in their abilities and aspire to perform to the best of their abilities.

 

These movies tend to benefit the working and lower income classes in our society. In a society where many people are losing their jobs in a poor economy, these films show that people can become successful and wealthy as well as overcome their adversities if they work hard enough. These types of films also show that even if they are at a low point in their life, they can always pick themselves back up and achieve success. These films also benefit the people who hold power in our society because when their workers see these types of rags to riches stories they may start working harder and obtain money which they will start spending which will help our economy grow.

Here is the link for a review of the Pursuit of Happiness:

http://movies.nytimes.com/2006/12/15/movies/15happ.html

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  1. Kathleen
    October 1, 2011 at 8:41 pm

    Nice post, Matt. You provided a good ideological analysis as to why these “underdog” and “rags to riches” stories resonate within our culture.

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