Rene Clair Its Specific Value Term Paper

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First was the portrayal of the Indians in the nursery rhyme. Their deaths were violent, and they certainly portrayed as minorities, and how minorities were viewed at the time. In addition, as the guests began to group together and form alliances, it seemed the film could be referring to the alliances of the Allies against Hitler and Japan in 1945. There were different groups forming alliances in the film, and they could have represented the alliances of Britain and the United States against Germany, Italy, and Japan. There were also veiled insinuations about other races, such as when one of the guests comments that the Butler could not be the killer, because the "shape of his head" indicated he was not smart enough to come up with the idea. This could have referred to the Japanese, who were consistently portrayed as buck-toothed, slant-eyed, black-haired caricatures in the newspapers of the day. Critically, the film was certainly not the best acted or filmed movie of the day, but the plot was excellent, and the mystery was convoluted enough to not be able to figure it out until the very end. However, the undertones were disturbing, and distracted from the other elements of the film that worked. Prejudice was certainly active and accepted at the time, and this film seems to be an excellent example of both good writing, and a heavy dose of discrimination thrown in for added interest.

Thus, if the conjecture about this film is correct, the historical value of this film to an Asian-American Pacific Islander (AAPI) may seem non-existent at first, but if some of the insinuations in the film are correct, then it paints a dim picture of this race at the time. Since there were no actual Asians in the film, it is quite difficult to tell if the insinuations were correct or not. However, that they exist at all says much about filmmaking of the day, which was obsessed with the war and the stereotypes of the enemy.
The Japanese were seen as "Japs," "Gooks," and worse, who were shuffled off to internment camps because they were a "threat" to the whites of the U.S. This film indicates how filmmakers did not include any minorities in films of the time, and that Asians were further ignored, no matter their ancestry, because they were all considered the enemy. These items hiding underneath what at first just seems to be an entertaining film make it more dark and ominous and the murders even more frightening and suspect.

In conclusion, this was a very interesting film that seemed to indicate the sociological feelings of the times. There were no minorities portrayed in the film at all, and the portrayal of the "Indians" in the nursery rhyme was quite prejudicial and mocking. The film seemed to have dark undertones of warring nations, perhaps because of the time when it was made, when America was still at war with Japan, and because of this, some of the film faded into obscurity when the darker undertones were discovered.


And Then There Were None. Dir. Rene Clair. Perf. Barry Fitzgerald, Walter Huston, Louis Hayward, and Roland Young. Twentieth….....

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