Paper #1: MOVIES AND DISABILITIES
Directors and producers seem to vary greatly in the way they portray people with disabilities, by the roles they create to the actors/actresses they choose to star as the characters. I personally have mixed opinions about how realistic they are portrayed as well as the reactions that other characters have towards them. I believe that dramas about characters affected by autism and other disabilities are often in fact more about the people surrounding them and the ways in which they interact (James). In addition, there is such a wide spectrum of movies that encompass characters with special needs from dramas like, I am Sam, to less important roles in comedies like, There is Something About Mary. This makes it very complex to try and analyze the whole movie business into one category.
However, before I move on I think it’s important to point out how people with disabilities in general have begun to show up in movies more prevalently and with larger roles. For example, the number of Academy Award-winning films portraying individuals with disabilities has dramatically increased since they first began giving them out in 1928 (Safran). In spite of this, often the images on the silver screen can distort the real lives of persons with physical impairments or mental illness, according to a new Ohio University study (Safran). This is why it is important for society to interact with those who have disabilities and not just believe the stereotypes that movies illustrate. Even though they might be portrayed in an unrealistic light, I believe this is a sign that society is beginning to accept people’s differences and are becoming more fascinated about the way these people live day to day.
For example, "Academy Award-winning films reflect the trend that people with disabilities are becoming more visible members of our schools and society," said Steve Safran, a professor of education at Ohio University (Safran). Regrettably, this can be...