Older Disney movies are like the old dark meat chicken McNuggets at McDonald’s.
That made no sense I know, but just let me explain.
Disney culture and movies has been the cornerstone of many people’s childhoods. People idolize Disney. I mean why not? They are a massive billion dollar conglomerate solely existing for our entertainment. Entertain, they have, but at a cost. Between theme parks, movies, toys, video games, and more, Disney has made a massive impact in the market, on my life and the lives of many others.
All Disney films come with a certain message. Whether it is obvious or not, the themes of each movie stick with you throughout your life. Certain themes come with certain movies, which have an insane influence on growing minds. At first, the obvious themes of follow your dreams and good prevailing over evil are presented and implemented into many Disney films. But when you take a second look, Disney appears to be much more sexist, racist, and biased than originally thought.
Now remember when I compared Disney to McDonald’s. Here’s how I figure:
Disney movies are presented to have fantastic morals and cultural values. Older McDonald’s presents their meat as 100 percent grade A. Obviously, none of this is the case. It was not until recently did we figure out that there was more behind Disney then “True Love” and “Prince Charming”, just how it was recently found out that McDonald’s “all white meat”, is not in fact, “All white meat”.
This called for damage control. Now McDonald’s meat products have improved, still with a few hiccups. Just like McDonald’s, Disney felt a need to establish a new precedent of moral efficiency. They have created movies like Frozen, where the Girl in the story is the protagonist and does not need a man to survive.
That is America’s two favorite things. This guy must be crazy.
Now McDonald’s is another story, but the proof is in the pudding for Disney. One movie which really attracts my attention through its sexist messages is Aladdin. Aladdin explores themes of sexual seduction, fraud, lying, and women objectivity.
Jasmine is portrayed as an object; something that could be traded. She is legally unable to rule alone as a women, therefor her father has arranged a marriage for her. This alone presents Jasmine as a second class citizen. As well, Jasmine shows young girls that the only way to get what you want is by using your sexuality and physical appearance. She does this by seducing Jafar to get her own freedom. In the end, she still is unable to save herself and needs the help of a man to come full circle.
Jasmine is not the only issue from this movie; Aladdin wins the love of his life by pretending to be something he’s not. Then, when he comes clean, he is accepted and rewarded for it. This tells young boys that if you lie about who you are to impress a girl, it will be alright when you tell the truth to them because you lied out of love. Obviously this is not a theme I would want burned into my child’s brain.
Personally, I find what Disney did in its movies to be horrid from a human awareness standpoint, yet genius from a business and controlling standpoint. I think older Disney movies blatantly exploit parents and their children. They manipulate them to follow certain gender roles that the corporate elites are trying to enforce. On the positive end, Disney attaches personal meaning to their products that truly attracts fans and customers for life. Disney has been influencing mainstream culture since the 1930s. Even through all of the controversy, Disney will always remain to be the one and only place where dreams really do come true.