Walt Disney is known for their uplifting and optimistic films.
But if you really think about it, Disney has a darker side too…especially if you take a closer look at your favorite children’s movies.
Disney’s earliest movie, 1937’s Snow White & The Seven Dwarves, shows scenes of hard working dwarves, and an evil queen that will do anything to keep Snow White from finding her Prince Charming. Typical gender roles of women are portrayed very stereotypically in this animation.
“She turns into the homemaker that cooks, cleans and takes care of her little men,” a blogger, PunkBullet, wrote back in 2012, and concluded “A woman is considered to be a homemaker, naive, and lacking in common sense.”
The Pirates Of The Caribbean movie series started in 2003. A new addition to the series comes out in 2015. Scenes of the resurrection of pirates, shooting guns, and acts of betrayal fill the action packed movie – But when you dig under the surface, one could argue that it’s discriminating to minority groups.
A blogger, Lake-Desire, gave her input back in 2006, posting:
“As much as I enjoyed the movie’s plot and action, and Elizabeth’s agency in a male dominated world, the race portrayal in the movie left me very unsettled.”
In 1989’s The Little Mermaid, Ariel is desperate to meet her prince on land, and in result, basically makes a deal with the devil, Ursula. A woman desperate for a man to save her couldn’t be any more of a cliche stereotype.
In an article, Grant Scott concludes:
“Ariel becomes a hapless waif, dependent upon the generosity and bravery of men to get her out of her bind.”
Disney’s Wall-E came out in 2008. Though the movie has an uplifting ending, the bulk of the storyline tends to be the opposite of that.
What’s more depressing than the human race becoming immobilized due to unhealthy lifestyles and living on spacecrafts? This movie puts a negative connotation on humans needing everyone else to do things for us, and always looking for the easy way out.
The Lone Ranger is no surprise, another dark Disney movie. Director Gore Verbinski, also the director of The Pirates Of The Caribbean, is no newbie to dramatic scenes, or even working with Johnny Depp for that matter. The storyline is something of a Native American and a man of the law creating honorary justice, touching on real events like Europeans taking over Native Americans’ land.
1950’s Cinderella has an intense underlining tone throughout the animation. Cinderella is a mistreated character, abused by her step family, and is later freed when she meets her Prince Charming.
Could Disney be anti-equal rights?
“Cinderella is a symbol of the patriarchal oppression of all women, another example of corporate mind control.”
Pinocchio is yet another Disney original that takes a turn down the dark side. Poor Pinocchio just wants to be a real boy.. Willing to give up his wooden frame and strings for flesh and freedom!
Sorry to burst your bubble, but even real people deal with this problem! A concept that Pinocchio can obtain freedom and happiness if he’s turned into something else, is a relevant problem in today’s society.
In Chronicles Of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe, three siblings find a secret land, where creatures are suppressed and have been in hiding for years, in fear that they will be killed by a higher power.
Whether we’re talking about mystical creatures, or real human beings, there are people all over the world constantly living in fear, afraid to be who they really are.
In Beauty And The Beast, Belle’s imprisonment by the Beast can have an anti-feminist connotation. Furthermore, when Belle’s father trades his life for his daughter’s freedom? That’s intense stuff for children.
Lindsay Lohan and Jamie Lee Curtis are quite entertaining duo in the movie Freaky Friday, though the storyline is something different. Mother and daughter, Tess and Anna, switch bodies unwillingly, attracting controversy of women’s rights. Do women have no control over their own bodies?
After watching all of these Disney movies, It’s no wonder why society has altered values..