Why do Hollywood films tend have happy endings?
Is Hollywood better understood as a cinema of genres or a generic cinema?
Hollywood endeavours to sustain a pragmatic but equivocal liberal politics. In such a context, can Hollywood ever offer a radical critique of itself?
How does Hollywood manage its audiences’ pleasures? You could consider the impacts and effects of style, narrative, spectacle and star performance.
In your approach to this assignment you should be aiming to do the following:
1.Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of key approaches to Hollywood cinema relevant to the selected essay topic
2.Demonstrate independent research tightly focused to your selected essay topic
3.Provide a clear thesis statement, and sustain a coherent argument effectively within the set word limit
4.Use succinct examples, including film analyses, to illustrate your argument
5.Use relevant and properly referenced sources to support your argument
6.Use clear prose, accurate spelling, grammar and punctuation.
1.Do not have grammar problems
2.Develop a specific thesis statement in response to your selected question. Avoid generalities that you can’t support with evidence (whether detailed film analysis and/or scholarly literature).
3.Choose your films carefully. Don’t select films just because you like them. Think about how different films will enable certain arguments to emerge in response to your selected question.
4.If it’s relevant to your question, you can draw on other extra-filmic evidence or primary sources, such as film posters, fan or trade magazine articles, and biographies. Note though that you should be careful how you interpret such material. Don’t take it at face value. Think about who is writing it, why, the genres that they are using, and their intended audience.
5.referencing. You are entering a critical conversation with scholars in the field of film studies, and the study of Hollywood cinema more particularly. Readers (and markers) of your work will want to situate it in relation to that critical conversation. Plus, they want to know what elements of your argument are original to you, and what other arguments you in turn draw on to argue your thesis. Therefore, it’s important to paraphrase, quote and cite properly and accurately.
The meaning behind 'happy endings' in Hollywood films
“Happy Endings” in Hollywood is one among the most less analysed and over utilised concepts in the discussions of popular cinemas. Although it has rarely been addressed in any detail, this term is still being ceaselessly employed by the filmmakers, audiences, scholars and critics and also, at the same time, is the one that summons an entire host of assumptions regarding the mainstream American filmmaking. This paper is going to elaborate on interrogating on the question of “Why Hollywood movies tend to have happy endings?”
It is to note that happy endings are very commonly being considered as the synonymous with the ending and the main couples in the movie are often seen as the synonymous with the happy endings. Also, the logical supplement of all these assumptions also holds, the meaning that is often surrounding the claims to the impact that the Hollywood movies ten to be closed by the happy endings with the engaged couple. It is also to mention that the term “happy ending” is spoken in the Hollywood movies and it is usually being exploded for circulating idealism in the profile of true hardships of life. One of the best example of this is movie “Blonde Venus”. In this movie, the chemist Edward Faraday marries a German cabaret singer named Helen and the couple settles in US. They also have a son there named Johnny. Gradually, Ned develops the radium poisoning and he need to travel Europe for his treatment but he has not potential enough to afford the trip. For his treatment, Helen started working and went to work for the nightclub manager named Dan O’ Conner. Eventually, misunderstanding started to develop in between these two. However, the movie was brought to an end with a “happy ending”.
It is also to note that the Hollywood movies almost always have a happy ending as the Americans do not like discomfort. Americans like happy feelings that let them avoid the introspection, personal growth and introspection- things that art is accustomed to inspire. Happy endings basically make the viewers, especially the emotional ones, feel happy. According to Grandy, Americans are obsessed with the happy endings. It is to mention that the sales strategy after the film making in the early 1940s as well as earlier than that used to be depending on the whims of the executives of the studio. Those studies used to own the movie houses which released the film for having the most control over the life of their product and the other commodity that they attempted to have control over was on their stars. There are many people who anticipate the ending of a movie to come with every fixings of “Hollywood Ending”- the perfectly choreographed kisses, the fireworks and some well predicted puppies. There are also some individuals who desire a night at the movies to be entertained in light hearted way. With the same, parents who try to attempt for a wonderful outing with their children do not need to cram into a car of crankiness. There are many greasy popcorn bits that are stuck to the sugar coated fingers and are sweater from their “Sour Patch Kids”. The people who happily welcome happy endings in movies could leave with a big smile and happiness and also they have a very warm feeling towards the story. There is no need of racking the brains for getting the answers to meaning of life. Also, people then do not need to reassess their choices for life. Hence, here lies the commercial need of happy endings in Hollywood movies that helps in turning everything into happy ending.
The American audience's preference for happy endings
As per Van Dyke Christina, human nature always seek for happiness. There are several Hollywood based movies that desire to make the viewer feel positive and better. With the same, as per, he have suggested that whenever art imitates life, people wonders who is it possible to have happy endings always. This is because not everybody’s life ends with happy ending and therefore, one wonders how such happy endings actually are. As per Van Dyke Christina, human nature always seek for happiness. If all the Hollywood movies endings had sad endings, it tends to be a high downer. However, it is really good that Hollywood movies try to motivate people and uplift them. It is a really good thing but it should always be kept in mind that if all the movies show people happy endings then there would be nothing to call as suspense. Everyone would make an idea of the climax. The Hollywood cinemas that have sad endings help the movie in maintaining the general form getting formulaic and with the same, one for the team so that the movies with the happy endings would still have the likelihood of sadness that would hook their viewers and create suspense. Furthermore, it is also to mention that endings are ideology. Sometimes, when the thesis of the Hollywood movies are reversed depending on if the movie will end happily or sadly. Moreover, it has been claimed that happy endings always make the promotion of complacency along with the social status quo. They are all about the diversification in between critiquing a system that is broken and uplifting and appraising a system that is working. This would barely involve some hardship sometimes. On the contrary, the endings that are sad do not uplift or encourage the useless despair and could be a calling to action. Furthermore, the happy endings leave people with a feeling that the system always work itself and there is no need of any effort to be given. Furthermore, complacency with the status quo could depicts a status quo which is both liberal and conservative.
Happy endings could also result in a spiritual complacency, which is collateral to the ideological complacency that is declared before. Happy endings are not the only approach to the movies and sad endings are very important as an occasional device. One of the other example include “Stagecoach”. This movie follows nine travellers who are riding on a stagecoach by the hostile Indian Territory. It is nicely structured with a very simple plot that permits the vital themes like that of social prejudice, greed and alcoholism in order to be traversed while not mislaying the fast paced characterisations and narrative of the main story. Right after introducing the occupants of the coach the viewer meet the hero- Ringo Kid, the character played by John Wayne. Eventually, the Ringo Kid is seen as risking his own life by engaging into a fight with the Indians. He could have easily run away from the nuisance but it is his bravery that helped him win the girl, just like he and Dallas was played by Claire Trevor and fall in love. Later, sheriff sends this couple somewhere away from the place in order to let them start a new life together instead of arresting him because of his brave actions. Hence, in this way a happy ending takes place.
There is nothing wrong with the concept of happy endings in Hollywood movies. Americans favour happy feelings that let them avoid personal growth and introspection. These things they regard as the things that art is customary to inspire. However, sometimes an upbeat result could let people embrace the values that they wish that they lived up to more frequently but if it is only the happy endings that we get, then the movies would never make us feel like we have anything at the upright. It is just an entertainment, just a spectacle.
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