I saw Prometheus last night which was absolutely amazing. Can anyone tell me why Ridley Scott concentrates so much on the male fear of childbirth and where he got this idea from? I haven’t seen many of his other films so am not an expert on Scott but find this concept really unusual and interesting.
That sounds really interesting. Haven’t seen Prometheus yet!
I wouldn’t say “the male fear of childbirth” figures in any of his other works that I can recall. The fear here is of giving birth to a monster that will wipe out all mankind.
The first Alien features a theme of birth trauma which origintes from Freud. Rob Ager has done an excellent analysis of this theme for his Collative Learning site, but unfortunately it’s not posted on the site itself and you have to buy one of his DVDs to get it. I recommend it though to anyone who’s interested – his analyses are amazing (you can read many of them on the site). I’ve bought most of his DVDs and have not been disappointed.
Not sure if I can post a link but here goes: http://www.collativelearning.com/FILMS%20reviews%20BY%20ROB%20AGER.html
Here’s a quote from Freud: “The act of birth is the first experience of anxiety, and thus the source and prototype of the affect of anxiety.”
And I wouldn’t say it’s just a male anxiety – everyone experiences the trauma of being born.
Sorry for the double post, but I found a blog that reprints Ager’s Alien analysis almost word for word: http://www.orble.com/alien-a-deeper-meaning/
Thanks Darkm@tters, Rob Ager’’s website look really interesting, will definitely take a closer look. You’re right, it a fear of both men and women. Perhaps Scott uses birth to represent a ‘new birth’ of civilization, similar to the monolith in 2001 a space odyssey?
I do see where you were coming from Lisa, the chestburster does offer a way for a male to experience life growing inside and then giving birth… but that seems to be only one in a myriad of birth related fears explored in the film. As Rob suggests in his analysis, that whole angle may have come from Giger’s obsessive sexual imagery more than from Scott. Personally I’m not aware of any other films that explore birth trauma themes in such an imaginative way (I haven’t seen Prometheus).
And speking of 2001, Ager has recently posted a new and fascinating installment in his ongoing explorations of that film. I only discovered it last night when I grabbed the link to his site for posting here, and my mind is still being blown in slow motion!
As for what the theme of birth trauma may represent in Alien – I can’t add anything to what Ager has already said about it. But it sure is a fun subject to explore, isn’t it?
Its a rape metaphor. I like how these movies turn the table on gender, usually in horror movies its females being menaced by males.
“where he got this idea from?”
It should be said that, even with the absence of the aliens as we know them from the original films, there are still phallic creature designs in Prometheus, as well as fears relating to sexually transmitted diseases and the right to have abortions (at least that’s what I read into that scene), which is completely new for the series. yay!
I thought this movie was aggressively stupid. Here’s Red Letter Media with a quick run down of the why…
Hahaha, I still like the film, but that’s great HoL. But as has been pointed out many times before, when you watch the a sci fi film, most of the time you have to ignore some gaping plot holes to be able to enjoy it
ahahaha – perfect.
@House of Leaves – you think the alien bodybuilders are stupid? They’re already mad enough as it is, don’t make them any angrier!
G-Legs—It’s not about it being sci-fi, it’s about it having a really bad script.
“I have to fill out a psychological profile when I apply for Target.”
hahah very true.