Invasion of the Body Snatchers as a Political Film

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Invasion of the Body Snatchers as a Political Film Michel Chevalier, in his Letters from America (1839) defined individualism as “a revolutionary force which liberated societies from the authorities… [individualism is] capable of creating new forms of social life through individual self determination” (Llobera 67). In the 1950s, The American cinema produced a sequence of science fiction films that generally revolved around and reflected significant political, cultural and social concerning plots. These films presented incredible events that usually were the result of nuclear radiation, alien invasions, mutation, and body snatching influences. In addition to the film plots, special effects were added to complete the cinematic experience. The film, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, suggested an “individual’s unimportance in a complex, modern world.” Beneath the unimportance was the political concern of conformity and loss of individuality among the residents of Santa Mira, California. Invasion of the Body Snatchers illustrates the difference between America’s collision of Individualism and the collective culture of conformity. Although Invasion of the Body Snatchers did not intend to become an allegory of political work according to director Don Siegel, it is evident that through specific instances, the film became a symbolic contrast of individualism and collectivism. The “office scene” between protagonist, Miles Bennell and former girlfriend Becky Driscoll occurs as they are escaping the pod people, launching the chase sequence. As Miles and Becky hide themselves in a doctor’s office, Miles goes into a moralistic speech about the pod people. In this instance, the pod ideology is revealed and ultimate goal of conformity is discovered; to convert the residents of Santa Mira for a collective, classless, Communist-like society as well as to promote the purpose
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