Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Homosexuality, Cinema, Movies, Cannibal, Cannibalism, Mexico, Masculinity, Macho

Pages: 3

Words: 825

Published: 2021/01/02

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There are numerous films that glorify masculinity, that feature well built-man showing off their toned bodies and indulging in macho violence and behavior. Apart from the very outward showing of machoism in the movies, there are also elements of the bro-code; highlighting their supremacy, never letting their brother down and an undisguised hatred for homosexuality. Ravenous is one such movie where the levels of testosterone is sky high and is set in a very macho environment of the Mexican-American war. Although it has a tough-guy subject and deals with horror and cannibalism, it is also a movie where there is an underlying tension of homosexuality and homophobia. The homophobia arises from the fact that it is not acceptable behavior and goes against the social constructs of an army life as well as a ‘normal’ civilian life. Ravenous although not a great movie makes for an interesting watch as it combines the elements of masculinity, homosexuality, homophobia and machoism beautifully.
Ravenous is set during the American –Mexican war. Colonel Boyd fights on the American side during the war, but during battle his courage deserts him and to escape he feigns his own death. While being transported along with the dead to Mexico, Boyd gets to taste human blood. Perhaps it is this or his latent bravery he takes over the Mexican post. But his superior on learning how the victory was won banishes him to a remote post. It is here that Boyd gets to meet Colonel Ives who has taken to cannibalism and kills and eats Boyd’s fellow soldiers when they go looking for missing soldiers. Ives also turns Colonel Hart into a cannibal and eventually becomes the commander of Boyd’s fort. Ives talks about his love for human flesh and asks Boyd to change into a cannibal and Boyd refuses only to be imprisoned by Ives. Hart helps him escape but requests Boyd to kill him as he no longer wants to be a cannibal. Ives and Boys engage in a bloody duel in the end where both get killed.
Although at the outset the movie looks like a horror movie, there are many underlying themes of masculinity, homosexuality and Homophobia in it. When Boyd’s commander learns that he had taken over the Mexican post through an act of cowardice, he banishes him to a remote garrison. This is in keeping with the bro code of superiority. A man has to be macho and exhibit masculine tendencies to keep up the superiority of the gender. Exhibiting cowardice behavior, especially on the war front is an affront to the bro code and brings down their superior status. It is exactly why Boyd gets transferred to a remote location in spite of taking over a Mexican post. Honor is somehow more important than a victory earned through cowardice, as cowardice goes against the bro code of superiority.
The bro-code of secrecy is also brought about through the character of Colonel Ives. Together with Hart he maintains the secret of cannibalism and the disappearing men. Ives and Hart go ahead in the ranks and get what they want while Boyd who has broken the code of secrecy gets punished. The bro code of secrecy is expected to be followed no matter how disgusting or how bad a secret one has to hide. It is the expected behavior of a man
The act of cannibalism in the movie can be seen as a reference to homosexual tendencies- Consuming a male body is like taking the man inside. Through the characters of Boyd, Ives and Hart the movie showcases how homosexuality is abhorrent to the machoist society. Ives could be considered as the bro who comes out of the closet. He is open about his cannibalism and enjoys his meat. Hart although a convert is hesitant to continue living as a cannibal He is clearly not comfortable with the idea and is consumed by guilt as well as shame. Boyd even though he has the same urges as Ives realizes that it is not good and eventually kills Ives and dies himself. Hart would rather die that live as a cannibal and Boyd would too die and kill rather stay a cannibal. Cannibalism when seen as a metaphor for homosexuality in the movie shows how the society is against it. There is no place for homosexuality in a masculine world. They are eliminated and the protagonist lets himself die than be a cannibal/Homosexual.
Thus Ravenous is an interesting movie that explores the opposing concepts of Masculinity, machoism and homosexuality. There is the bro-code of superiority that the men in the field have to follow and also the secrecy they have to maintain to stay part of the group. The obvious reaction to homosexuality in a very masculine society is also brought to the fore. In order to be a macho-man the guy has to not only suppress his homosexual tendencies but also suppress it in others. The movie is reflective and is a satire of the society and its expectations from a ‘normal’ man. Masculinity is still not associated with homosexuals and the ridiculous bro-code is what is being turned into a satire in the movie.

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WePapers. (2021, January, 02) Good Essay On Ravenous. Retrieved August 05, 2021, from https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-on-ravenous/
"Good Essay On Ravenous." WePapers, 02 Jan. 2021, https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-on-ravenous/. Accessed 05 August 2021.
WePapers. 2021. Good Essay On Ravenous., viewed August 05 2021, <https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-on-ravenous/>
WePapers. Good Essay On Ravenous. [Internet]. January 2021. [Accessed August 05, 2021]. Available from: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-on-ravenous/
"Good Essay On Ravenous." WePapers, Jan 02, 2021. Accessed August 05, 2021. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-on-ravenous/
WePapers. 2021. "Good Essay On Ravenous." Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. Retrieved August 05, 2021. (https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-on-ravenous/).
"Good Essay On Ravenous," Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com, 02-Jan-2021. [Online]. Available: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-on-ravenous/. [Accessed: 05-Aug-2021].
Good Essay On Ravenous. Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-essay-on-ravenous/. Published Jan 02, 2021. Accessed August 05, 2021.
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