Women and Gender Roles


Gender roles and in specific the role of women in the society can not be underestimated at all. As a matter of fact, women have had strength in shaping events and people in the society since the olden days as it is seen n the films that are critically analyzed in this paper.


In the ‘Metropolis’, the setting of the future where there is a society that is divided mainly into two groups. In this futuristic society, the two main groups are the: workers (the people who live in absolute poverty and work underground) and the skyscrapers (the managers and planners in the Metropolis who live in excess luxury). In the film, women are portrayed as very powerful figures in the society who determine to a very great extent the relationships that people do have. As a matter of fact, it is through women in the film that either positive or negative relationships among other people are developed. ‘Metropolis’ clearly illustrates this fact right from the beginning of the film. It is at this point that the life of Freder is taking a quick turn as he is motivated into his newly found zeal by a woman. Freder is among the lucky people in ‘Metropolis’ to be living the luxurious life.


As a matter of fact, it is due to his father’s high position in the society that he dwells among the rich and wealthy hence has a very vague idea of the kind of life that the poor are leading. One day though, he gets to notice a beautiful girl in the presence of children belonging to the workers. It is exactly at this point that Freder develops an infatuation towards this girl and he can not seemingly afford to keep her out of his life. Despite the fact that they belong to the different extremes of classes in the society, Freder is very much willing to learn more and even mingle with the workers just to get his way to the girl. It is during this time that he is following her that he finds out about the M-Machine which is ruthlessly used to sacrifice the workers. Lives are lost in large numbers to the machine and this fact disturbs Freder in a great way. In an effort to express his love for Maria, Freder decides to act as the intermediation between the workers and the high people in the ‘Metropolis (Wiesner, 2010)’. At the end of the film, Maria has played a great role in bringing stability to the people of her class.

On the other hand, the woman has also played a great role in determining the relationship between Fredersen and Rotwang apart from affecting their entire lives. The two individuals who used to be collaborators in the past have a very sour relation that is even provoking either party to kill the other. This is also down to the fact that they were fighting to have the same woman in their lives. Unfortunately for Rotwang he lost the woman to Fredersen, a fact that he has never accepted and he is always fighting to get even with. It is due to this reason that the two are motivated into living the respective lives that they are living. It is therefore very clear in ‘Metropolis’ that women do play a great role in shaping the lives of men (Wiesner, 2010). As a matter of fact, the core activities that are surrounding the lives of men in ‘Metropolis’ are being determined by the women around them. They do have a silent force that is too strong for the men.

‘La Jetee’

Just as was the case with ‘Metropolis’, the role of women can not be undermined at all in ‘La Jetee’ given the fact that the main character’s life is also similarly revolving around the woman that she fancies most. As was indicated in the previous film, ‘La Jetee’ is also a fictional story where power over time movement is possible. It is due to this fact that the main character who is Davos Hanich (a prisoner) in the aftermath that results from the Third World War. The prisoner happens to fall among the category of the people who are used by scientists as subjects to the experiment intended to travel time either in to the future or even back in the past. Davos qualifies as one of the people who can psychologically handle the pressures that are as a result of dealing with ones past or even future. It is at this point that he is taken to his past where the film reveals that he had experienced a situation with a woman on a boarding platform.

It was also at the very spot that Davos had experienced the death of a certain man. He struggles to the future and eventually is rewarded as he meets this woman that he has desired to meet again for his entire life. Just as was the case with the likes of Freder, Fredersen and Rotwang in Metropolis, Davos also develops a romantic relationship with the newly found woman in his life. He is taken back to jail but he is adamant that he wants to retain his previous life where he was with the woman. Fortunately for him, he is taken back to the life though he meets his death at the meeting point with the woman. As a matter of fact, it was the same death that had been haunting him for his entire life. The woman led him to his destiny, death. The strength or the role of the woman to shape the life of man has once again been proven to be very effective in ‘La Jetee’ (Wiesner, 2010).

‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’

Unlike in the two films where the women have been given very executive powers of shaping the life of the men hence generally shaping the events in the entire society, ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ presents a totally different scenario. In stead of the women and men having strong love for each other as in the cases in the two above films, ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ presents a situation where the loved ones are not in trust of each other at all. This actually forms the main theme in the film where the loved ones are being accused of being impostors by their loved ones (Wiesner, 2010). It is as a result of this scenario that it becomes clear how much women do not have the powers to be influential like in the previous cases.


As it has been clearly elaborated, women do have a strong place in the society. Their strength though could turn to be destroying or even rewarding according to the manner in which the men in the society decide to use it (Wiesner, 2010).

Related essays