Thursday, 2 October 2014

The Male Gaze

Bruno Mars- Gorilla

This video is highly sexualised and is clearly for the male gaze. The main woman in the video is a pole dancer and used as a sex object.

In the first glimpse we have of this woman in this clip she seems to have a sexy glint in her eyes and quite a seductive look about her, that she gives to Bruno Mars. This immediately conveys to the audience that she is going to be more of a sexual object to him in this video and that they might have some sort of relationship together. This is further established when the shot cuts to a shot of Mars and the woman looking as if they are having a sexual relationship. In this shot the woman's head is tilted back as if Mars is kissing it.

It then cuts back to being in this club again and the woman is now crossing the room in a sexy, feminine manner, walking to emphasize her curves (moving her hips more than you normally would do). She also continues making lustful eye contact with Mars, which he returns in his facial expression too. This further conveys the idea of sexual feelings between them. We also see that she is wearing a dark, tight-fitted outfit- this emphasizes her body even more and suggests that the music video focuses mainly on her appearance and not who she is as a person. Therefore, she is a sexual object.

The camera then cuts to a brief close-up of the woman's face at 02:02 in which she is looking directly down the lens with a passionate, seductive look in her eyes. The closeness of the camera to her face also adds a feeling of intimacy, so this may suggest that the music video makers want the male audience to feel this with the woman in the video and it appeals to the male gaze. The direct look down the lens also effectively breaks the fourth wall with the audience and makes men feel involved with her. Her fingers are near her lips, this, in a way, is her pointing out a feature that men find attractive in women. Her fingers also seem to be in the position of which you hold a cigarette which might suggest a sort of sexual, dangerous world (full of things like drugs, alcohol and cigarettes) which some men watching may find appealing.


In the clip above the camera is focused on the woman flaunting her physical features, her bum in this instance, by moving in a sexual manner up and down the pole. The camera only shows the bottom of her body and only shows her from behind in this shot, which shows how she is only being used as a sex object as it doesn't focus on things such as her face instead of her body.

This clip is similar to the one where the woman is moving up and down the pole as this too focuses on her body. In the first part of the clip we only see her legs, and legs are seen as quite as sexy part of women's bodies and appeal to men, and therefore the male gaze. The woman is also at the centre of the shot during this, further enforcing the idea that we are meant to be focusing on her.

The camera then cuts to the woman feeling her own body in a sexual way, and it then cuts to a birds-eye view shot of her face in which she is pulling a facial expression that is associated with sex and orgasms. This once again reinforces the fact that she is there as a sexual object in the video, expressing passion and things of a sexual nature to appeal to men watching it.

After this, the video cuts to a shot of the woman swinging around a pole showing her physical attributes (strength and possibly flexibility- suggested with the fact that she is a pole dancer) which all link in with this idea of animalistic sex that Mars is singing about. We also don't really see her face, we mainly see her hair and legs, which shows that the video is more focused on the sexual elements of her body and the glamour of her hair than her face and personal qualities. She then slides down her pole, legs spread open and in the air (which is a very sexual pose), holding her own weight- which furthermore agrees with this idea of her showing her physical attributes to the viewers of the video.

In the clip above to begin with the camera follows the woman in a tracking shot (?) reminding us that our attention should be on her. It then cuts to a close-up in which her eyes are emphasized by her heavy make-up as they look directly down the lens, once again breaking the fourth wall with the audience and making the men feel involved with the action. It then cuts to a different angle in which she pulls her outfit off to reveal a skimpy, almost underwear like clothing underneath. This shot is repeated three times at different angles, two of them are a sort of mid-shot, the first further away and the second closer- perhaps to make the audience feel (the men feel) as if they are getting closer to the action and more involved- and finally the last time it is repeated we see the woman from a front view with the full-length of her body in the shot, and she is in the centre. This positioning of her in the centre of the shot and the fact that her full body is in it suggests that our attention should be completely focused on her, her barely there outfit, and her body. The slow motion used further infers that this is an important part of the video, as the audience are getting to see her body- which suggests that her body is the most important things about her (objectifying her). She also throws her head back in a 'look-at-me' way and her hair is thrown back too, these things are associated with the super-smiler facial expression.

After this there is various close ups of the woman moving to the music, messing up her hair with her hands, throwing her head back and forward to flip her hair and half-smiling in a sort of sexual way- all in slow motion. These things further emphasize the sexual feel to the video and that she is just there to be looked at. The camera during this also cuts to people to the sides of her- lower down than her showing that they're less important in this video and should not be focused on by the audience compared to her- who throw money at her. This further conveys that she is only a sexual object as people are paying her for what she looks like (objectifying her), and they don't seem to care about her as an individual.

There are scenes from this point in the video in between other scenes that seem to take place in the back of a taxi, for example at  03:21-03:30 and at 03:32-03:36, Mars and the woman seem to be having sex, and he gropes her body too. This makes the video even further sexualised and passionate. It further makes it clear that the woman is only being presented as a sex object in this video.

The woman licks Mars guitar in this part of the video- which is a very sexual gesture, seductive and erotic. Her hint of a smile to Mars and invitational eyes, full of mischief, looking up at him comply with the 'invitational' facial expression identified by Marjorie Ferguson. The way that she grabs the guitar off of him is quite sexually aggressive, she is taking control of his possession which might be seen as quite sexy and provocative.

In this clip the woman is soaking wet, which people might associate with things of a sexual nature and men may find it sexy.

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