Historical Stereotypes of Australian Masculinity in the Film 'Two Hands and Strictly Balloon'

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Historical Stereotypes of Australian Masculinity in the Film 'Two Hands and Strictly Balloon' “Film is a powerful player in the construction of national identity. In Australian films, men embody particular masculinities such as rugged practicality and anti-intellectualism, ruthless independence against all odds, and a willingness to die. These masculinities have been embellished and perpetuated in film histories as the ideal held as the standard for imitation”

Introduction ============

Since the revival of Australian cinema in early 1970s, Australian films have focused on certain themes of social perceptions and representations of masculinity. We see dominant,
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Mateship ========

The unique Australian mateship – exclusively male camaderie – pervades all interactions, actively and robustly discouraging those who would be different. Mateship does not acknowledge fear or pain, even when facing death.

In Two Hands true mateship is amply depicted. When Jimmy is in trouble, after losing ten thousand dollars, and Pando’s gang wants to kill, Jimmy’s friends (not fearing to commit a crime for mateship sake) help him to repay Pando by robbing a bank together. One of his mates was shot dead by the police. In the bank robbery one of the robbers fell and fainted, an in true spirit of mateship, he is helped by his mate rather than left abandoned. We also see mateship in the relationship between the two kids, although one of them is a boy and the other is a girl (but dressed as a boy to reflect the masculinity stereotype). The two kids look out for each other, when another boy attacks the boy, the ‘girl’ helps her friend and they both get away safely. Also at the end of the story the surviving ‘girl’ avenges the death of ‘her’ friend by killing the gangsters who had earlier run over ‘her’ friend. Also, the garage owner contacted his mate when a man tried to sell one

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