Little Miss Sunshine Belonging Analysis

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Art is a beautiful thing. It has many forms, but its use and meaning have remained relatively unchanged. Even in its infancy art was communicating messages and recording history on the walls of caves and trees. A lot of time has passed and since then art has done some growing up. Subliminal messages and personal meaning are encrypted in almost all forms of things considered to be artwork. Story telling is leading the charge in what it means to be creative and immersive. Usually the story attempts to solve a problem that closely parallels a much larger issue facing the majority of the audience in real life. To further discuss this topic the movie, Little Miss Sunshine, shall be decoded and analyzed in the following text. To be covered are: …show more content…
The family arrives at the pageant slightly behind schedule and one of the directors does not deem it fit to allow Olive to register on the charge that she was late. Richard gets down on his knees and begs the women, but to no avail. This scene, and Dwayne’s realization, suggests the idea that the pageant represents society and that society wants nothing to do with the Hoover family; a family of losers. Luckily, the IT guy shows mercy and offers to register Olive anyway. Because the IT guy is not part of the pageant and is probably only there to be paid, it could be assumed he represents a “loser/outsider” showing sympathy to other outsiders; the Hoover family. This is confirmed when he says, “I can’t wait to get out of here, these people are crazy.” As the family walks into the dressing area the film directors make it very clear that the beauty pageant values the same sexualization of women, as did their vulgar grandpa. Eight and nine year old girls are shown in revealing clothing, wearing a full face of make up, and being spray tanned to perfection. In this sense the film is challenging hegemony by implying that society is like a beauty pageant; it is an ongoing contest to see who can be the best at fitting in. Those who lose at this contest are cast out of society and experience resentfulness and hate for the duration of their lives. Frank is a shinning example of this. When telling Olive why he attempted suicide he broke down the events leading up to his action: his lover did not love him, he was fired from his job, and his lover then left him for his competitor. None of these things caused him to act, it was when he found out he had LOST to his competitor for an award he so rightfully deserved, that he tried killing himself. It was the competition that caused the harm. Finally, the movie’s most direct and obvious message about competition comes during the scene with Olive and grandpa getting ready for bed in their motel