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An analysis on the film "Deadgirl" for Horror Film class under Andrew Ty (1st semester, SY 2011-2012)

An analysis on the film "Deadgirl" for Horror Film class under Andrew Ty (1st semester, SY 2011-2012)

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  • 1. Debunking Deadgirl a COM115.9 final project Presentation
  • 2. A Zombie-film released in 2009 It is a film on the “alienation of youth”
  • 3. Plot Deadgirl is about two high school rebels who uncover a woman’s body (which is indestructible) inside a former mental institute. The trouble begins when Rickie decides to forget about it while JT has other plans that involve using her as a sex slave.
  • 4. Characters Rickie's best friend. The antagonist.  Ego-centric young man who always seems to have his libido on full-throtle. He gets the idea to use the dead girl as a sex toy. After being turned down by Rickie, he then invites Wheeler to join in on the fun JT Rickie Our main character. Rickie is a shy boy who has major girl problems, especially towards Joann. Goes completely against his friend, JT's ideas upon seeing the dead girl. He thinks the dead should stay dead.
  • 5. Characters The Dead Girl a naked girl tied to what seems to be an operating table in an old mental asylum. She seems to be dead. But not quite. Joann The love of JT's life who he can't seem to get over. Is currently dating the school jock, Johnny - who like most film-formula Jocks, is pretty much an @$$ Keep an eye on her.
  • 6. Deadgirl for Horror Film Class? themes in the film through the eyes of Wood, Clover, Williams and Creed
  • 7. Robin Wood: The American Nightmare
      • What escapes repression has to be dealt with by oppression .
        • Rickie and JT are repressed because they feel incapable of getting girlfriends due to their social status in high school
        • JT turns his repression to oppression when he decides to rape the dead girl and use her as a sex slave
  • 8. Robin Wood: The American Nightmare
      • The figure of the Other: where the dominant figures of women were constructed and are controlled by men
        • Deadgirl depicts rape as a gruesome and disgusting scene – objectification of women
        • The monster represents the powerlessness of women as she was chained to the bed
  • 9. Robin Wood: The American Nightmare
      • Horror’s basic formula: Normality is threatened by the monster
        • The sexual act was depicted as disgusting by making the monster figure a woman
        • A monster is the exaggerated representation of what is considered normal, in this case that is using women as objects for sex (dead girl is not alive but cannot be killed)
  • 10. Robin Wood: The American Nightmare
      • Deadgirl shows a clear depiction of how people turn their repression to oppression
      • The monster is represented by a woman (zombie) but she is really the one being oppressed by JT, a man
      • The film touches on morality which makes for an interesting climax
    "I don't know what you're talking about. It's all harmless fun."
  • 11. Carol Clover: Her Body, Himself
      • The Female Face
    •     The focus is generally on the main protagonist and antagonist (JT and Rickie), however, it is in the emotionless face of the dead girl (and at the same time, her monstrous anger when she is freed) where the terror truly lies. 
  • 12. Carol Clover: Her Body, Himself
    • "I like women, especially beautiful ones. If they have a good face and figure, I would much prefer to watch them being murdered than and ugly girl or man"
      •   Much like watching a porno, people are somewhat attracted to watching a girl getting sexually abused, especially when she's pretty. In Deadgirl, the audience shares an equal balance of sympathy, disgust and eroticism for most of the scenes involving the naked dead girl (and JT + friends)
    • She is "punished", in this case, raped for her exercise of "scopic control"
  • 13. Linda Williams: When the Woman Looks
      • The Woman identifies with the Monster
    • We could say that the monster in this film is JT. Because of his evil acts and intentions with the dead girl. However, our victim also shares a few things about the monster. Much like a monster, she is seen as something unnatural. A beautiful girl, strapped to a table, lying naked -- every man's fantasy. But still, somewhat dead.
      • The GAZE
    • Our monster sees the female as a sex object, the woman simply looks at him, watching everything take place. A spectacle of sorts.
  • 14. Linda Williams: When the Woman Looks
      • Sadistic Voyeurism
    • The dead girl is presented to the audience as inferior, being chained and used as a sex toy, yet there's something about her that's deeply horrifying. (Nasa loob ang kulo)
      • When the girl is replaced by the love of JT's life, she is then objectified and prettified like a living doll, which makes little difference to how Rickie and his friends were treating the former dead girl
  • 15. Barbara Creed: Horror and the Monstrous Feminine
      • An Abjection: 
    • The woman's soul-less body is used as a tool for sexual pleasure. She is a zombie, in the simplest sense, but her lack of any sort of emotion to whatever circumstance she is placed in, especially in rape gives it a somewhat religious abjection as well, and an issue on morality.
    • (excluding the rage she expressed towards the end - whether that was out of revenge or her zombie character kicking in, we can't know for sure)
  • 16. Barbara Creed: Horror and the Monstrous Feminine
      • Borders, and how it constructs the monster
    • The woman is at the border of her life. In between being dead and alive (the living dead), much like how the genre of this film is border line horror, coming-of-age and porn. :| 
  • 17. Dead but not quite - a beautiful naked woman in a clear body bag. Every man's fantasy? Maybe not.
  • 18. WHY STUDY DEADGIRL? The film serves as a good commentary on morality and innocence "Hindi ka ba natatakot na matu-TUS rin tayo balang araw?"
  • 19. WHY STUDY DEADGIRL? Its unpleasant and gruesome scenes paint a realistic picture of the violence of rape
  • 20. WHY STUDY DEADGIRL? The film’s violence invokes the right kind of reaction