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Myths and heroes : how are american soldiers portrayed as hereos in war movies ?

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Par   •  19 Mai 2019  •  Fiche  •  638 Mots (3 Pages)  •  807 Vues

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So today,

I’m going to introduce you the notion of myth and heroes thanks to a topic studied in class « war on screen ».

To begin, like to state a short definition of this notion.

A myth is an idealized representation of a character, a historic event

A hero the hero is as much a reality as a social construction, hovering between legend and reality. The hero can be someone who is admired for his noble values. Can be defined as a brave man , doing things out of the ordinary.

There are a lot of heroes : fictitious hero , human rights defender, sportsman, or unknown hero, like a fireman or a soldier, that’s why i chose to stay focus on this topic.

So, now we might then wonder how are american soldiers portrayed as hereos in war movies ?

For that, I shall first deal with the traditional image of american soldiers in war screen and then the reality of the war.

I.Positive image

Generally, Soldiers are the main representatives of the heroes who are ordinary persons who help the others. They are seen as heroes, because they make good actions, they protect us, they risk their lives to protect their countries... They do a lot of sacrifice.

-We studied in class a poster of the movie « saving privates ryan »  on this poster the soldiers are in the sky, they apper like angels ready to protect and save the nation, like guardians. The soldiers makes all these sacrifices to protect their homeland but also to defend values such as democracy. So many Amercian films present the soldiers as heroes. We see extraordinary men, who constantly surpass them. We see a strong camaraderie between them. They are truly portrayed as supermen.

II. The reality of the war

Soldiers in realistic war movies are differently depicted. At first, we can speak about the training of the soldiers.

We saw in class, an extract of

The movie Full Metal Jacket released in 1987 and realized by Stanley Kubrick shows us the horrors which these men live in their training. We discover men wich humanity and feelings are erased to transform them into war puppets complaintly brainwashed . The Sergeant destroyed psychologically his recruits. However we see that the most human of the soldiers, the one who cannot leave his humanity become completely crazy. Finally, in this antiwar film, we see that what passed for heroism before, can now be seen as madness. Fight without thinking makes no sens because the purpose has been deleted. The war is completely absurd.

They are no longer heroes but fallen heroes like ira heyes an anti hero of a ballad studied in class who was a privates also, who has suffered theconsequences of the war to finish dead and forgetten.


To conclude, I think that the war is still a significant experience and

there is a myth of the heroic soldier but not of a real hero when the movies are realistics.We really see the worst of the human.Movies


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