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The Help Movie Essay

The Help directed by Tate Taylor, based on the award winning book by Kathryn Stockett. The movie received Grammy nominations for showing a fictional take of real life events that occurred in the 1960’s in Jackson Mississippi. Aibileen (Viola Davis) and Eugenia (Emma Stone) or Skeeter collaborated together to make sure that African American maids stories were heard. Illustrating the theme of moral courage shown by all of the maids featured in the film. Views are first introduced when Aibileen is interviewed by Skeeter, in the scene we are given details about when the movie is set, “I was born in 1911. ”

Skeeter asks, “Why did you become a maid? ” To which Aibileen replies,” My mum was one and so was my grandmother. ” Her statement reveals to me that Skeeter and Aibileen have a growing relationship. African American and white people back in the 1960’s were segregated by harsh, unfair rules, these were known as the Jim Crow laws, which we are exposed to from Aibileen friend Minny when her daughter begins her first day of work. “Hands don’t touch, make sure you place the coffee down in front of them. ” Therefore when Skeeter asks about Aibileen’s life, it is obvious that she has a high level of trust and respect for

Skeeter. After this scene we are placed back to real time. And to later finding out, the first scene is replayed and carried on later on in the movie which is called continuity editing, when the editing order of the movie is ABAC instead of ABCD, This indicates that Tate Taylor wanted to make sure the viewers were well informed about this scene beforehand, which shows boundaries broken from having Skeeter in Aibileen’s home. There is a shot where Skeeter writes down “The Help” then interviews Aibileen, here it is recognised that Aibileen is someway related to “the Help”.

In the 1960’s, Jackson Mississippi where the movie is set, was a very segregated town, where African Americans were split up and treated with disrespect from white people; white people looked down upon them and spoke to them in an unkind manner, as if they were children. So to have Aibileen talking to Skeeter in the first place is very unusual. Skeeter asks Aibileen to share her past experiences of being a maid. Aibileen then explains that she would rather read it from here prayer book, stating” I write down my prayers it’s the only way they will be heard”, Here this rings in the theme of moral courage.

Aibileen has never had the opportunity to tell her story, and is shown from here just writing her experiences down. This made me question, how many other stories have gone untold? As it wasn’t easy for Aibileen to share hers. For Aibileen to suddenly open up to Skeeter, shows masses of courage, as many other maids from the movie didn’t want anything to do with the book, as they have trust issues with white people, and don’t want to risk losing their only source of income.

So why talk to a white person about stores “her people “have caused? We later find out the Skeeter had a very strong relationship with her childhood maid Constantine, which helped her with her childhood battles, for Skeeter to later find out had been fired by her mother. Even though Skeeter has been told not to write “The Help” several times, and to stop hanging around “ them coloured people”, she showed courage and being her own moral support because of how Constantine was treated, as she didn’t have the voice to stand up for herself.

Which I guess is why Skeeter wants to stand up for coloured people; realising that they have no say nd treated with disrespect, which is a strong theme which Tate Taylor has brought throughout “The Help”. And a prime example of this is with Mrs hilly announcing that coloured people will now be able to used separated toilets located outside of the house, as they supposedly carry different disease because of their colour, which is absurd. Skeeter and Aibileen have helped to develop the theme of moral courage, to show how hard it was in the 1960’s for African American women to stand up for themselves.

Through the start of the movie Tate Taylor, used the technique of voice over, with Aibileen narrating when new ideas are brought into the movie. She introduced crucial information to inform the viewers that the movie is based in Mississippi and Skeeter is travelling home from New York. Tate Taylor also ends the movie with a voice over of Aibileen, after being hastily fired by Mrs Hilly; who is a strong activist against segregating coloured people, also the president of the white club who brought in the proposal of the toilets.

Aibileen finishing voice over stated“ no one what it felt like to be me, once asked I felt free”, having this hows an all-round closing of the movie, and general theme. Many coloured people in the 1960’s were never asked to speak up or ever allowed to share their feelings. They had to work all day and come home, to do the same for their family often surrounded by violence which is brought into the movie. However Tate Taylor and Kathryn Stockett, had missed to highlight the these women had to leave their children at home, while they work, slaving away for white people, cleaning, taking care of white children, when they have there’s at home.

It was during this era that women of coloured skin were beginning to ave their voice and say, this movie reflects women beginning to speak out as considerably as men. Tate Taylor throughout the movie, assured that the way people perceived white people was well established, He used lighting and costume, with bright colours to show that white people are joyful and almost good, when African American had dim lighting and dark costumes which have the sense as if something bad is going to happen, which gives the viewers on how people were perceived in Jackson Mississippi in 1960’s.

Throughout the movie we are shown sources such as jfk and the death of Med Ca Evans, these ver asked me are all symbols that viewers are easily recognized with, giving a sense of formality that real life events have been placed/prod casted in the movie. Here a key idea is formed, after all of these drastic movements in history, racism was still there, that even after maids telling their untold stories, picking up huge amounts of courage to do so, were far from diminishing the Jim crow laws, and racism in Mississippi.

Which is often brought up in today’s society that even though, these women Aibileen and Skeeter and other maids had the courage to tell their stories it idn’t all a sudden disappear. It was still seen at the end when Mrs hilly accused Aibileen of stealing, even after the book “the help” had been published. Many children (myself included) often thought after the ‘I have a dream” speech that all a sudden , white people would realise that they are treating these humans wrong, and that people of different colour deserve equal rights.

But this is not the case, racism is still here today, with gay rights, and racism of white police officers killing African American people, which shows we still have a long way to go, to reach equal rights. The Help directed by Tate Taylor has used visual and oral features to bring the theme of moral courage throughout the movie.

Kathryn stocketts, Idea of writing the book” the Help” has had huge success around the world to inform us with realistic circumstances. That even though Aibileen and Skeeter showing the lives of African American maids, it wasn’t ever resolved, that racism is still going to happen. Just as long as heroes such as Skeeter and Aibileen speak up, that people stories and ideas will get across that maybe, just maybe, racism will be a thing of the past?

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