The Selfish Nature of Men

Good and evil are concepts that people today have trouble coming to an agreement with because everyone has different opinions. Subsequently, in today’s society there are several injustices that take place because people do not want to recognize the harm they cause others. In the film “Chinatown” directed by Roman Polanski the theme of injustice is presented through the lens of rape. This led me to wonder what meaning does the director want to convey in using rape as his central example of the injustice within society. After watching this film, I found that there are two primary examples that demonstrate the concept of rape both in a literally and metaphorical sense. The first example from the film that illustrates the idea of rape was when the audience finds out that the father of Evelyn Mulwray raped his daughter at the age of fourteen. This was a literal example of rape because Noah Cross took the innocence of his daughter by force for his own sexual pleasure. Another way the director used the concept of rape to demonstrate the injustice in society was with the water scandal. The criminals took away the water supply from the general population. Many viewers may be confused on how the director used the concept of rape in this situation. I would argue that the concept of rape was used metaphorically in the sense that water was grasped away from society. In further explanation, Polanski used the fact that the setting of the film is in California, a state that is going through a drought to illustrate the fact that Noah striped society from its water supply in order to gain profit and power over the city.

I noticed that in both these situations the attacker was a male character. Therefore, I believe that Roman Polanski tried to convey the message that gender inequality is driven by ambition and greed. Men in this film take what they want without considering the harm they cause others. Noah Cross is portrayed as an abusive selfish and power hungry man. His character depicts the idea that rape is manufactured by the desire to gain profit and power over others. The cops who are under the orders of Noah Cross support my claim because they end up killing Evelyn even though she had a good reason on why she wanted to escape with her sister/daughter. This scene shows how the males in the film believe that they hold power over women. At the end of the film, Noah maintains authority even though he is corrupt. This outcome poses the issue that men who rape in society sometimes have immunity because they hold power which protects them from suffering the consequences for their crimes.

4 thoughts on “The Selfish Nature of Men

  1. I disagree with Johansen’s final claim about the film “Chinatown” directed by Roman Polanski, that “men have immunity because they hold power which protects them from suffering the consequences for their crimes.” However, I do agree with his claim within this specific film that “men take what they want without considering the harm they cause others.” I want to further Johansen’s claims by connecting these ideas to the film “The Little Mermaid” by showing that men and women can both take away from people. Ursula shows the audience that women too can be evil in their specific endeavors by ruining the love lives of others. Both men and women have the capabilities to harm others but the outcomes to these specific antagonists clearly differentiate. On one hand, Noah Cross is a man that takes away from people without considering the harm he causes to them. On the other hand, Ursula is a woman that also takes away from people, such as Ariel, without considering the harm she causes to her love life. Even though both characters are similar in this approach, the end result of their actions are different. Is this differentiation due to male immunity that woman do not have? Can this end result ultimately be due to their genders? I do not believe either of these questions are true because in the film “Shape of Water” the audience sees Strickland, a man, killed and punished for his actions of taking away from people for self-satisfaction. Ultimately, I believe neither gender has immunity over others which protects them from suffering the consequences of these horrible motives. I believe Noah Cross was lucky to get away with his crimes and that if a woman was also in his particular position, she too would get away with her crimes. Ultimately, I believe neither gender possesses immunities and both have equal repercussions to pay.

  2. Hey! I think it is very interesting you saw a parallel between two stories being told in one movie. I think this develops the character of Noah Cross and the dark secrets he holds. For me, this highlights the theme of taking in control more than the concept of r/a/p/e(doing this so that the blog comment doesn’t get rejected) even though it is a big role in the movie. To further this discussion, why do you think the movie is directed to show this bad character of Noah Cross? I am thinking the movie wants to highlight that people in power want to stay control in power. As you have mentioned about one’s own pleasure, I see that in the control of wealth and power to the water system of a rising city. This is a way to show how people are mistreated either by powerful men or the society itself.
    I may disagree that Cross is corrupted. I feel like he is simply the bad guy and caused the ‘corruption’ in his family members’ lives. It’s just messed up but I don’t think that’s affecting him as much. However, it seems like he wants to keep everything under control even when it comes to family and the corruption did not affect him significantly even when the daughter died at the end.

  3. تُستخدم المبيدات الحشرية للتخلص من الحشرات الزراعية، وهي عبارة عن مواد كيميائية سامّة يرشها المزارعين على محاصيلهم للقضاء على الحشرات الضارة، ويوجد العديد من أنواع المبيدات الحشرية حيث تُستخدم بعضها لنوع مُحدد من الحشرات بينما يُستخدم بعضها الآخر لمكافحة مجموعة كبيرة من الحشرات، وهذا لضمان حماية المحاصيل والكائنات الحية الأخرى مع مراعاة سلامة البيئة، كما يراعون متى وأين وكيف يستخدمون هذه المبيدات الحشرية.

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