Through The Glass DarklyThe Reflection Of Society — страница 5

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and offered him safe haven. A systematic progression of analysis through the events and depictions of women in the film illustrates the importance of these roles to society’s worldview and leads into Post-Modernism. The opening scene of Touch of Evil introduced the main couple of Mike and Susan Vargas as a traditional and stereotypical pair of husband and wife who is about to witness an explosion, not only of Rudi Linnekar’s car, but of their own idealistic existence. The camera pans in a continuous shot past the ill-fated car to the Vargas couple. Mike Vargas has his arm around his new bride, leading her forward. He walks protectively with Mrs. Vargas on the inside towards the sidewalk as they walk down the street. When they arrive at the border it is Mrs. Vargas that

identifies herself as “Mrs.” and who pulls her husband away from the car that has pulled up next the them. This illustrates the give and take in a relationship. As Susan and Mike cross the border for the first time, the border being representative of many things, they pause to exchange sweet talk and kiss. It is during this intimacy the explosion occurs, and the camera breaks for the first time. The combination of camera technique, cinematography and character interaction sets the scene for the movie and the conflict with the relationship of Mike and Susan. The border and the explosion combine to form the complimentary symbolism of the division between man and woman. Susan and Mike are literally from different countries as man and woman. They are physically from Mexico and

America, but from psycho-social standpoint there are from different countries, or as pop culture would say, different planets: Mars and Venus respectively. Men are found in the “power” positions in the movie, specifically law enforcement. Besides Susan and Tanya, women are seen as objects of desire and adornment: the stripper in Rubi’s car, the “dancers” at the border club. The tensions that mount on the border zone grow as well in Mike and Susan’s marriage. “This isn’t the real Mexico. You know that. All border towns bring out the worst in a country” (Touch of Evil, 1958) The border brings out the extremes in people as well, and the different priorities Mike and Susan have in their relationship. The differences between the two manifest itself particularly in

relation to Mike’s work. Susan can not understand why he can not abandon the investigation to return with her to their honeymoon. She can not understand why he can not devote his attention to her, embodying the “marrying woman” persona. These underlying problems come to head and are exposed in the explosion, revealed along the border. “One of the longest borders in the world is between your country and mine “(Touch of Evil, 1958) and by traveling that border the conflict between man and women is explored. The introduction of Quinlan and Tanya as a couple and foil of the Vargas’ is of a significantly different nature. Quinlan has been thoroughly articulated as a character through earlier footage before he darkens Tanya’s doorstep. The audience’s first view of Tanya

is that of a dark haired, sensuous woman in some sort of ethnic garb with a cigar smoking from her full lips. She is a drastic contrast to the pale, blond Susan Vargas who stepped daintily next to her husband. Tanya’s sultry presentation is in part contrasted by an apron and pot, two domestic items that do not coincide with her image as “femme fatale” but allude to her nurturing presence later on. Tanya exists independently, she speaks with an accent alluding to foreign origins and ideals, including those held by society. She has heard the “explosion” but it was not on her side of the border. She is separate from the controversies surrounding the other characters in the film but existing outside the norms of society.Where Tanya ironically has a nurturing presence, that

of Susan Vargas remains complex. Susan is not the quiet little housewife, but an independent sensuous newly wed. Her outfits reflect her innocence and good girl demeanor by being light of color but that is contrasted by their cut. Her conservative sweater and skirt outfit is overridden by the tightness of that sweater which accentuates Mrs. Vargas’ natural attributes. Her night ware at the hotel, a virginal white, is styled anything but. Mrs. Vargas is not unaware of her wiles, often tossing her coat over her shoulder and walking with a purposeful stride. Despite her marriage, she is very much still an independent woman. First and foremost, she crossed cultural norms to marry a Mexican despite the prejudices she had to have encountered. Her interaction with the Grandi boys on