Being “Real”

I have great admiration for people who are “real.” Personally I think it’s one of the most important things in life because that’s when people are truly “alive,” when they’re being “real.” I put those words in inverted commas for a reason. Words become empty and meaningless from overuse and we take their meanings for granted. I want to talk about the core meanings of these words and get back to the root of what it is to actually be “real.”

When I say “real” I’m not talking about something that’s just tangible and that simply exists. Because that’s what life has become hasn’t it? Just existing in relation to society’s expectations and simply being here, in this world. If that’s what “real” is then the world has come to a very sad conclusion.

But no, when I say “real” I’m talking about when people fully let go. When they are utterly and completely themselves. They don’t stick to social conventions and they open their soul for the world to see. And I think that’s the most beautiful thing a human being can do. To show you their soul and tell you “This is who I am.” There’s no masks, there’s no social obligations, there’s no holding back.

And when that happens, you know you’re “alive.” You’re experiencing something greater than just existence but actually feeling something. Feeling emotions that have been numbed by socialisation into this fucking shitty world. You’re truly fucking living because nothing is holding you back. You’re not afraid of consequences or taking shit into consideration because you’re “alive.” It’s so frustrating when you want someone to cut the bullshit and just be “real” for 5 minutes. Society is full of shit people and shit systems of norms but when you meet people who show you their souls and are so “real,” you’re going to be so renewed with life that you’ll never be able to go back to your old lives and you’ll never look at fucking society the same way again.

And that’s why I have admiration for people who are “real,” because they’re so impassioned.

Clémence Poésy on her love of people being real: “I’m not fascinated by people who smile all the time. What I find interesting is the way people look when they are lost in thought, when their face becomes angry or serious, when they bite their lip, the way they glance, the way they look down when they walk, when they are alone and smoking a cigarette, when they smirk, the way they half smile, the way they try and hold back tears, the way when their face says they want to say something but can’t, the way they look at someone they want or love… I love the way people look when they do these things. It’s beautiful.”

Some character examples are Juno (Juno), Tracey Berkowitz (The Tracey Fragments), Tiffany Maxwell (Silver Linings Playbook), Donnie Darko (Donnie Darko), Johanna Mason (The Hunger Games), Effy (Skins).

Here’s an example of how it feels when people are so fake from Silver Linings Playbook. “Ugh you’re killing me,” is like the perfect reaction to bullshit.

Capitol Couture: Innovation or Complete Contradiction?

 

Fans of The Hunger Games will probably already have heard of Capitol Couture, the new clothing line with features clothing inspired from the Capitol fashion in the books. It also includes makeup.

From most of the reaction I’ve seen, the common consensus is excitement. Fans are eagerly awaiting the arrival of these glamorous garments which dazzled viewers who saw the scenes of the Capitol citizens in The Hunger Games (2012).  Now, I have to admit, I love merchandise as much as the next person. I collect T-shirts with my favourite bands on them. I have a Hufflepuff wristband, and I have a lot of badges. Movie companies have every right to sell products and make a bit of money if they see where profit can be made. To name a few movies where it’s been done: Harry Potter, Twilight and probably the biggest giant of all Star Wars. That’s fair enough. But it’s just this particular movie that doesn’t bode well with this idea.

In The Hunger Games series, there are 12 districts and a Capitol. The Capitol is filled with rich people living luxurious lives. Some are more shallow then others. They eat well and are obsessed with trends, looks and reputation. They live this way only by the utter poverty and hard labour of the districts. Some districts are slightly better off than others, the outer districts bear the brunt of disease, starvation and squalid living conditions. The Capitol are oblivious to this (or else they just don’t want to know).

Now are you beginning to feel a bit unsettled by this? The allegory isn’t as fictitious as it first appears. In our world there are people, like those in the districts, who live in similar conditions. In the 1st world its the homeless or struggling underclass who have to wonder if they’ll have a next meal or will they have a roof over their head at night. In the 3rd world its the people who are afraid everyday of war, genocide, drought, famine or a natural disaster. The world isn’t such a big place. Yet there’s inequality and injustice everywhere. While we in the 1st world are worrying about getting the latest technology or fashion, they’re struggling to survive. And in most cases they’re not; they’re dying. That’s the message Suzanne Collins was trying to get across when she wrote those books. I know she sold the rights to the series, but I really believe she would be disappointed with Lionsgate’s attempt to try and drain the cash cow on this series.

Trish Summerville designed the clothing for the movies, and she did a superb job, but this is going a bit too far.  The images in this post are examples you can expect to find on the clothing line. You can also find them on the Capitol Couture website. The website is quite clean-cut. The amount of design and marketing that went into making the site is quite apparent. I must say I was quite taken aback by how sleek it was. But don’t be fooled. Behind the pristine images and tidy layouts is just another capitalist corporation trying to make a profit off of reckless consumerism in the 1st world.

For that reason, I feel really uneasy about how people are going to celebrate and consume the mindless greed that was so apparent in the movies by buying these clothes in real life. Are they just going to ignore the idea the books/movies are supposed to portray? It just boggles me how the movie company portrays a message of injustice with one hand, and tells people to consume with another.

In a blog I read,  http://victorsvillage.com/2013/09/05/crossing-the-fashion-line/#comment-14200, they talk about how Lionsgate “dont care […] what the message of the story really is” and I’d have to agree with a lot of their points.