Queering the Closet: Queer Review: Ma Vie En Rose ()
"Ma Vie en Rose'' offers gentle fantasy, and a little hard reality, about Soon he's making the arrangements for a play "marriage'' with Jerome. A description of tropes appearing in Ma Vie En Rose. Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: At the end of the film, Ludovic meets a boy named Chris — short hair. Ma Vie En Rose is a gorgeously sublime film about a child who claims The opening sequences of Ma Vie En Rose, which show different couples getting when she ends up frantically searching for him in a Pam billboard.
Ludo runs out of the house, distraught. Hanna, Ludovic's mother, blames her for everything that has gone wrong. She wants to set Ludo straight, so she cuts her hair to make her look like her brothers. Ludo resents her mother for doing this, ultimately deciding that she wants to live with her grandmother.Final Scene from La Vie En Rose
When Ludo and her grandmother go visit her parents one weekend, the father announces that he has a new job, but it is out of town and they have to move. At their new house, Ludovic is befriended by Christine "Chris" Delvigne, a young girl who prefers to be seen as a boy.
Chris' mother invites Ludovic to Chris' dress-up birthday party, which Ludo attends in a musketeer outfit. Seven-year old Ludovic lives in an upper-middle class Belgian suburban neighborhood. He behaves in a way that is quite natural to him, dresses in a dress or skirt whenever possible, and is quite convinced he will be marrying a neighborhood boy, the son of his father's boss.
His favorite television program is a kitchy girls program about a Barbie-like doll called Pam who lives in a flowery girly pink cartoon fantasy world and has magic powers. Young Ludovic dances Pam's dance to the haunting song "Rose", and like some other girls of his age fantasizes about marriage to a handsome romantic man who will sweep his female love off her feet. The film depicts the difficulties facing a child with gender identity issues and the way the Ludovic himself, the confused parents and family, society, school, other children, and the neighborhood hostile, hypocritical, and ignorant handle the situation.
Ludovic is seven years old. At first thinks he is a girl, then becomes confused as everyone attempts to disabuse him of this, then tries to find an acceptable common ground I am a girlboy, or I am a boy but I will grow up to be a girl, or something went wrong and and I should have been born a girl.
Culture attaches meanings to a given sex. A given culture has its own meanings of gender roles. In this Belgian community gender role includes men liking women. However as Ludovik and this film prove, gender identity does not end there.
Ludovik is certain he is a girl. Though Ludovik does not conform to meanings of norms in his society, it does not however imply that he does not play a certain gender role himself.
In here we see how meanings attached to a gender role is change.
Society and to some extent an individual is able to reshape its culture giving new meanings to gender roles. Difficulty arises when the current social meanings contradicts and creates tensions in the process of changing meanings. In the movie as the family of Jerome faces threats of isolation, we see the process of socialization of the family and Ludovik himself.
The context by which Ludovik and his family is important in the development of the film and the characters. It is thus important that the film spent a great deal of effort on the sub-urban neighborhood where the family leaves for it serves as an influential agent by which how the family and Ludovik himself faces his issue of gender identity.
Focusing on their primary agents of socialization, their primary groups are also revealed. Primary groups are formations, groups that individuals are consciously member of and they constantly integrate with. It is important to identify the primary groups that Ludovik and his family are members of in order to fully understand their opinions, feelings and more importantly later their decisions. In discussing the primary groups of Ludovik and his family, we will be able to see how their decisions reflect that of the opinions of the society they are in.
Primary groups exert a certain degree of pressure among its members for uniformity. There are three reasons why individuals conform to uniformity. One is that their membership into a specific group restricts the information that they get, limiting their opinions to opinions of the other members of that group. This pose as a symbolic threat to the other members not to contradict these norms.
These are the feedbacks that the family receives hence they base their opinions on the opinions of their neighbors. Ludovik on the other hand, being a member of the neighborhood and his family only experiences repression from them. He draws into a conclusion that indeed it could be the reason for god to send him to hell.
Ma Vie en Rose () - Plot Summary - IMDb
Another reason is that people value their membership to that group. The family being financially dependent to one of their neighbors highly value their approval. The approval of the neighbors forces the parents of Ludovik especially his father to seek a professional help. This approval also pushed his brothers not defend him when their friends started to beat Ludovik.
Ludovik loves his family and do not want to indirectly cause any harm to its members. He values his membership to his family. Lastly, people generally want to be considered as normal. However normality is also a social construct. Society dictates what are considered normal and abnormal, what is acceptable and what is not.
It should be noted that the capability of a primary group to influence its members is still primarily based on the importance of the group to its members. It leaves viewers hanging as questions of an innocent child pokes their hearts forcing them to re-examine and reconsider their orientations for that possibility of acceptance into the social norms.
It leaves the viewers to rethink that perhaps one day we would realize that Ludovik is right and that it is all but a scientific error. After all it makes perfect sense that way. However, it is unfortunate that the world around him has been very certain as well, only to make sure that Ludo does not belong. The corresponding conceptual model depicts the child Ludovic as its center.