District 9 genre representation

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Transcript of District 9 genre representation

  • 1. Genre andRepresentation
  • 2. The exam formula (how to approach your exam answer)To what extent are your chosen textstypical of their genre? 2011 ExamStage one Identify your 3 texts and their genres in aintroductionStage two For each text demonstrate an understandingof the genre conventions that apply. (Choose 3 genreconventions)Stage three For each individual genre conventionchosen, ensure you give an example of a scenereference.High grade students can link theory and contextual information to
  • 3. Sci-Fi Genre Conventions 1.The narrative themes of; Aliens and humans coexisting New technologies and their consequences Transformation/body horror (Post modernist paying homage) 2. The use of advanced scientific events within a fictional narrative to propose and discuss a real moral debate 3. Traditional iconography (the visual images and symbols used in a work of
  • 4. Sci-Fi Genre Conventions Neil Blomkamps District 9 pays homage to the genre and specifically to David Croenbergs The Fly a previous Sci-Fi, via a intertextaul reference. This gratifies the preferred audiences viewing needs.
  • 5. Documentary style Genre Conventions1.The use of on screen graphic to introducecharacters/contributors2. Camera time codes3. Acknowledgement of the camera4. The use of interviews/vox pops
  • 6. RepresentationEthnicity and Gender
  • 7. The films contextApartheidThe city in question is the directors hometown of Johannesburg, South Africa.The film was made after apartheid was abolished in South Africa. This overtsatire effectively encourages the audience to ask questions the movie isuninterested in answering.Its been 33 years since South Africas Soweto riots stirred the worlds disgustwith that countrys regime where legal segregation kept blacks apart and inhoods (thus, Apartheid) The text discusses these issues but via Aliens andHumans.RaceA row broke out over the films representation of Nigerians as gangmembers, weapons dealers, cannibalistic, voodoo using prostitutes. A backlash from blogs complained the film would reinforce negative stereotypes ofthe country. A Facebook group, District 9 hates Nigerians, was also hastilycreated, and is urging people to sign a petition demanding an apology fromthe film-makers.
  • 8. If District 9 really does hate Nigerians, it clearly hates its powerful, whitecharacters even more. Objecting to Nigerians being portrayed as morallybankrupt criminals seems pointless when almost every group of characters inthe film have little or no regard for the law and a predominately negativerepresentation.The company in charge of shipping the aliens away from humans, MNU, andmany of the white politicians giving the orders are invariably ignorant, double-crossing, ironically inhumane and corrupt. The soldiers are again white, withcharacteristics of being easily mind-controlled thugs, using violence, threatsand tricking aliens into signing dubious eviction notices. Scientists are whiteand carry out underhand experiments on captured "Prawns"; Even therepresentation of the aliens is negative, they arm themselves with illegalweapons and brawl in the streets.Blomkamp makes it clear the Nigerians are no better or worse than their white(or alien) counterparts, creating an unsettling sort of equality among thecharacters. And while the film may occasionally play on clumsy racial stereotypes, it alsoencourages us to challenge them. All are represented in a negative naturewhen in power.Blomkamp passes the baton back to us as viewers to question how our ownbeliefs shape our opinion of representation and racism. Are we defensive whenin a minority? Are we unaware when in a majority? However right or wrong or
  • 9. District 9, A Post Modern Film?Typical features include a deliberate mixing of differentartistic styles and media, the self-conscious use of earlierstyles and conventions,Hybrid genreSatire/Parody (why should it not be entertaining for a film todiscuss heavy political and spectatorship issues?)Dilution and mixture of genreHomageThe postmodern author deliberately undercuts the smoothsurface of his narrative and by somehow standing back andcommenting on the action prevents the reader from losingthemself in the story.