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Critical Response - Research Paper Example

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Name of the Student Visual Arts and Film Studies Name of the Concerned Professor 4 November 2012 Critical Response- Watermelon Woman Watermelon Woman is a feature film directed by Cheryl Dunye and it was released in 1996. In one’s attempt to exhaustively explore the black American culture, Dunye has certainly been successful in giving way to just the right diegesis, by filling and inhabiting the space with just the right characters, events, and actions and imbuing the film with the appropriate attitudes, actions and things…
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Critical Response

Download file to see previous pages... The two stories intricately crisscross each other and in a way assume a form and life of their own as they gradually unravel. Dunye’s film primarily comes out as a complex yet somewhat enticing insight into the American history, delving on the relevance of cultural icons and issues pertaining to cultural representation. However, the film sometimes confuses the audience going by the fact that it has a lot going on in it at the same time, thereby making the plot a little complicated with haphazardly placed setting of the events, their order and duration, and the exact relationship between them. Still, Dunye has been able to manipulate the link between the plot and the story to facilitate a sense of drama. To a great extent the story relies on stereotypical contrasts and comparisons like the differences between regular, curious and evolving character of the young black lesbian Cheryl and Tamara, her particularly stereotypical, hardliner and close minded friend. The one big weakness in the film is that it predominantly intends to intrigue through the ingenuity of the exploitation of documentary techniques. May be it is owing to this that some audience may find themselves disappointed by the disparity and lack of correlation between the form and the content. What the forms in the movie Watermelon Woman seem to offer, the content sadly falls short of it. One special thing about the larger theme of the movie is that it has definitely succeeded in emphasizing the emotional relevance and value of cinema. However, the coy romance engaged in by Cheryl, and the wacky shots that she is continually subjected to, to a large extent dilute the overall impact of the movie, making it conveniently ingratiating for an audience with regular expectations, without being able to score the incumbent and associated political comments. Though, the prime focus of the director seems to be to resuscitate a part of the African American history that conveniently got sidelined in the flow of time, which is the Black sexual history, the film badly falls short of achieving this objective in a forceful way. However, Dunye has managed to succeed in securing varied salient objectives that attend the feature films associated with the like subjects and themes. In her own peculiar way Dunye has been able to write a history that earlier never existed. In that context, the film Watermelon Women is securely grounded in the historiographical facts and realities of the Black people and especially the black women of the last century. For instance, Cheryl’s quest for the ‘Watermelon Woman’, engages her in interesting and thought provoking interviews with many people who happened to be the fundamental part and parcel of the Black Club culture during the interwar days. While delving on the film in a serious and analytical manner, one simply cannot help identifying the personal stake that the director has in the movie. The Watermelon Woman throughout hovers around an essential black lesbian identity. However, it does so by stimulating the viewers to correlate and identify the connections between the stories of a black American actress from the bygone era, who managed to accrue fame through a range ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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