Highland Rambler

The student news site of Highland High School in Salt Lake City, Utah

Highland Rambler

Highland Rambler

Politicization In Hollywood

Billie Martinez

Media from Hollywood is the classic example of people romanticizing life. People watch movies that help them feel emotions, connect with a character, or feel inspired. They see a perfect house, a perfect job, relationships with issues, but everything works out in the end. It’s a classic story that people aspire to make their own lives match.
People connect so deeply with movies and stories that they then feel as if they are connected to actors themselves. They follow and monitor interviews, award shows, or day-to-day activities.
These deep admirations and connections often have people forgetting what roll entertainment should be playing.
In recent years of media, entertaining ideas and creative plots have seemingly turned into platforms for entertainment businesses and people in that line of work to make political statements and force political ideas into plot lines.
Media is produced for different reasons and to convey different messages to a target audience. Of course, these ideas often have political ideas behind them, or the point is a political statement. Except this new rise in politicization appears to be in movies that political ideas do not belong in.
One of the most recent movies that was controversial was Barbie directed by Greta Gerwig. Many people were outraged about the “political nature” of the film and how it felt like feminism being thrown in their face. However, the movie was merely making social commentary while also finding an entertaining plot that fit altogether.
The Barbie Doll has had these controversies since being created, which the movie made light of while also sending a positive message. It was commentary on social issues but not politicizing or alienating one political group; not trying to shame people who think a different way.
But a social message is not the same as a political one.
Marvel is a genre based entirely in fiction considering the space travel, superpowers, and the multitude of unrealistic ideas and storylines put out within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The entire idea is to have an alternate reality to our own where the geography has the same layout but calls attention to how different the movie is from reality.
This calls to question: why would we want to hear social or political commentary from a movie that is meant to reflect where we live without any of the same issues?
Most movies that are making light of political issues are the ones that are meant to be entertaining, and many box office ratings are dropping because audiences would rather just be entertained, not preached to. Movies shouldn’t be preaching politics when their purpose is for people to not have to focus on the real world.
This is also true when it comes to celebrities. Although they are fun to watch in movies, many are making well over seven-figures in just one project and are not in touch with the realities of people who are not celebrities.
When they are using their platforms to take a political stance, it’s hard to even say whether they actually believe what they are saying, or if they just want to appear relatable to an audience they are out of touch with. The Oscars, and other awards shows, have become an excuse to make political statements.
This can be especially scary with entertainers who have younger audiences and for children who may be targeted by these political statements. Kids are getting ideas from celebrities who may not have kids and don’t understand a younger audience because that is the role of the parent.
Kids movies are meant to have positive, general themes that typical revolve around respecting each other, being good people, and bonding together. Political or more specific ideas of one issue put into a kid’s movie can often be problematic because they’re too complex to understand. Their movies make more of an impact with more comprehendible themes for kids to have the positive ideas before they start learning about worldly political issues.
All these controversies around fictional ideas and plots can be frustrating, but they are inevitably putting responsibility back on the audience members.
The audience must come to the conclusion that they can separate entertainers from politics. They can pick and choose. What they choose to watch and how they perceive it is their choice, even if it is frustrating that there are political ideas behind many movies that are getting put out.
Similarly, it is important for people to remember how celebrities live extremely different lives, which is often what makes them entertaining to listen to. However, them being entertaining does not mean they know what they are talking about.
Their jobs are to entertain, which is why they are good at seeming relatable and why people want to listen to them. But when we are choosing who to listen to, we should let people who have done the work and who really are informed on what they’re talking about take on those subjects.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Highland Rambler Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *