Analysis of Paris Is Burning

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In movies, identification and idealization

In movies, identification refers to the unconscious relationship developed between an audience and a particular character. For a hero or heroine to be identifiable to the spectator, he or she should possess certain traits that are attractive. However, not all actors depict identification. Some are portrayed as arrogant and mean and hence repulse the audience. On the other hand, idealization is defined as a form of engagement with a certain film. In this aspect, the viewer sees himself or herself in that movie, having experienced the same situation with the character and perhaps reacted in the same manner. In addition, idealization is further expressed when the movie concurs with the viewer's goals and aspirations in life.

In the film, Paris Is Burning 1990

In the film, Paris Is Burning 1990, the sense of identification that I feel aligns with the sole purpose major objective of the whole movie which is to convey the message that the perception of idolization of the white is neither perfect nor much different from that of any other race. The balls came up as occasions when complex individuals, a majority of whom had experienced shunning or rejection of their true selves in the society or families, to express their dreams. This perception mainly resonates with my beliefs especially when the film shows the true life, out of the balls where scenes of the whites are depicted as successful with only a few successful African Americans in the play. The act of the film to showcase an enforced and skewed societal perception of African Americans dragging queens and kings makes the audience see a different side onto the life that could not have been thought of previously by offering one of the truth and validity. Through making these strong statements and overstating the obvious, the bonds the feeling of identification in me through the portrayal of a lifestyle and indeed white race idolization which I could have possibly seen as obvious had the director of the film blurred the lines between the white and the black and instead opted to mix up the races of the characters in each category.

Through the movie, I feel idealization of the rich people

Through the movie, I feel idealization of the rich people throughout the story even though it is riddled with irony, and the films seem never to force me to conclude that its subjects are unaware of this irony. The most outstanding aspect is the manner in which the film director does, the subjects, in the movie the honor of allowing them to retain some of their mystery. Personally, I felt like the movie is addressing the realistic, diversity of 'not everyone is a white male, just a strong majority.' What is more, the narrowness of these dreams appears to be beyond the scope of the film. The film addressed the idealized white culture through the subjects. In simpler words, the films show an obsession and domination of the white class in the balls and elsewhere but fail to support it. Through this idealization, the film made me think critically about the idea of segregation of races, especially because it raises the point but does not show any outright endorsement of it.

Works Cited

Mickel, M. (2017, February 10). Paris Is Burning 1990 Full Movie [Video file]. Retrieved from

September 25, 2023




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Film Analysis

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