Persuade Classmates Film Effective Social Critique. Using Essay

Length: 6 pages Sources: 8 Subject: Film Type: Essay Paper: #32840149 Related Topics: Film Industry, Movie Industry, Cinematography, Actor
Excerpt from Essay :

¶ … persuade classmates film effective social critique. Using Toulmin system, make a claim film's effectiveness ineffectiveness, provide reasons support claim, supply grounds film support reasons.


The cinematography industry generates numerous motion pictures directed at dealing with contemporary problems and while most of them are Hollywodian and thus commercial in character, they nonetheless manage to put across a thorough account of the topic that they discuss. Paul Haggis' 2004 film Crash is obviously meant to deal with racism and with the fact that it poses a threat to society's well-being. Although the script is filled with marketable elements and most events in it are unlikely to happen in real life (at least not in successive order), the movie express racism exactly as it is, emphasizing that society should indeed be alarmed because of the discriminating character people display on a daily basis.

Considering that Los Angeles is a city overwhelmed with variety, it is only natural for tensions to be high regarding discrimination based on differences. One of the principal factors that give Higgis' movie credibility is that it was inspired from a real-life event, which involved the director's car being carjacked on one of the most trafficked streets in L.A.

The director's experience was strengthened because of the location where the carjacking occurred. During the recent years, film directors focused on L.A. As a good example of American depravity caused by people's incapability to lead a normal life. It appears that no matter the convictions that one might have, that person is likely to be drawn into the city's affairs, eventually becoming a part of it and of everything it represents (Gormley).

Social groups and cultural identity are difficult to define in a city such as Los Angeles. The territory virtually stands as a place where racism developed unlike anywhere else, as white individuals in particular acquired a special taste for discrimination. In spite of the fact that it is one of the largest urban settlements in the U.S., Los Angeles is completely different from other large cities in the country. Film directors and writers seized the opportunity of exploiting the city's uniqueness through relating to it in their work. Los Angeles' racism-dominated landscape has been frequently used as a background for motion pictures, books and short stories. White supremacy is something one is likely to observe when being present in Los Angeles, with numerous white individuals expressing a biased view as regards non-whites. Motion picture involving Los Angeles and the topic of slavery are typically related to the concept of a damned city where discrimination, death, and immorality can be commonly seen (Avila 238).

From the very first scenes of the movie one can feel the tension and sorrow presents on the streets of contemporary Los Angeles. While the initial events in the movie can be more than enough to highlight the message it wants to send, matters are slowly but surely elevated, to the point where audiences feel overwhelmed to the depravity present in today's society. Stereotypes, racism, and metaphors flow in rapidly and keep viewers confused as regards that the movie actually wants to send. It is almost impossible however for someone to take his or her eyes off the screen as the storyline progresses. People are kept in tension with the help of a forth and back depiction that is meant to provide information relating to how each of the characters is involved in the overall message the film wants to put across (Vasquez Jr.).

One of the film's taglines is the phrase "You think you know who you are. You have no idea." The movie involves a series of diverse characters, each of them unpredictably coming across situations that mark them permanently. The actors playing in Crash manage to provide the public with a wonderful performance. Whether considering Bullock's dedication to actually seem the standardized white woman living in constant fear of being robbed or killed or Matt Dillon's outstanding performance as a police officer who is certain that non-white people are responsible for his condition, it is obvious that the director intended most white characters to express feelings destined to shock viewers regarding the level to which racist convictions can influence someone. It is probably Haggis' intervention that caused these actors to plays a stereotypical image of a supposedly intellectual black individual who does nothing to support his principles (Fibbs).

Crash is essentially a film that lives up to its name (even with the fact that most will find the film's title to be more than confusing in parallel to its storyline), given that most elements in this movie collide with each-other. Cars, ethnicities, personalities, skin colors, and viewers' opinion run into each-other all across the movie, eventually leaving the audience and the characters alike in a state of bewilderment.

The movie does not have the purpose to prove that white people hate black people and vice-versa. It is most probably intended to demonstrate that one should not generalize concerning discrimination, as there are white people who appreciate non-white individuals and vice versa (Greydanus). This is perfectly exemplified during the beginning of the film, as two black men (Anthony-Ludacris and Peter-Larenz Tate) have an argument on the topic of the service they received at the restaurant they visited. Anthony attempts to convince Peter that the waitress that had just served them displayed a discriminating behavior. Peter tries to refute his partner's arguments by relating to all the elements that demonstrate the waitress' innocence. It later turns out that the waitress had not actually been discriminatory while the two apparently virtuous men were in truth criminals.

The movie's title can be interpreted in several ways, as one can understand it as a reference to the crash that takes place in people's life at the time when they realize that society is very different from how they pictured it. Also, the title can be associated to the crash between dissimilar individuals and the connection that is made between them at that moment.

The motion picture puts across intense feelings, influencing (at least for some time consequent to seeing the film) the public in changing its opinion in regard to their perspective on life, stereotypes, and discrimination in general. The movie's title is just as surprising as everything else in the film, as nothing turns out the way you (as a viewer) expect it to. One would initially think that he or she can anticipate events in the film, but as the story advances it becomes obvious that it is virtually impossible to predict what will happen next.

Racism is the main topic in the film, as most conflicts happen because of racial discrimination. The chain of occurrences in the beginning of the movie gives the audience the feeling that this is yet another stereotypical film employing racial discrimination with the purpose of attracting numerous viewers who actually enjoy stereotypes. Then the crash takes place. The viewer observes that two gang-banging black men are capable of engaging in philosophical conversations regarding discrimination and how it is immoral to discriminate. The story jumps back and forth, later showing how the two black individuals previously seeming unrelated to all stereotypes regarding African-Americans are actually the no-good criminals everyone thought they were in the beginning of the movie (Hsu).

The film's content can certainly be troubling for most viewers, regardless if they are adults or not. The movie involved violence, sex, and offensive language, having all the elements one would expect from a movie named "Crash." All things considered, some people are likely to feel that the movie has nothing to do with its title and that the director was uninspired in choosing it. Even with that, if someone actually wants to find a connection between the film and its title, he or she can think about the actual car crash that takes place in the movie, and about the fact that this scene is probably one of the most emotionally intense incidents in the motion picture (Hsu).

The title "Crash" can stand as a perfect name for such a film, taking into account that the movie presents a series of crashes of all kinds. In spite of the fact that many of the occurrences in the film are less likely to occur in real life, the motion picture succeeds in sending out the message its director most probably wanted it to. "Crash" is a film one cannot describe to his friends, as it in attempt to depict this film one can simply say that it is a crash. It is pointless to describe this movie, since everyone that sees it for the first time will be disappointed if they are already familiar with events in it.

Most of the characters in the movie were influenced in behaving as they did because of the circumstances they found themselves in (Smith). Los Angeles is apparently a place where even the most innocent individual…

Sources Used in Documents:

Works cited:

1. Avila, Eric. Popular Culture in the Age of White Flight: Fear and Fantasy in Suburban Los Angeles (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2004).

2. Fibbs, Brandon. "Crash." Retrieved November 2, 2010, from the Brandon Fibbs Website:

3. Greydanus, Steven D. "Crash." Retrieved November 2, 2010, from the Decent Films Website:

4. Gormley, Paul. Retrieved November 2, 2010, from the Darkmatter Website:

Cite this Document:

"Persuade Classmates Film Effective Social Critique Using" (2010, November 02) Retrieved June 21, 2021, from

"Persuade Classmates Film Effective Social Critique Using" 02 November 2010. Web.21 June. 2021. <>

"Persuade Classmates Film Effective Social Critique Using", 02 November 2010, Accessed.21 June. 2021,

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