How has the ‘movie psychopath’ been reimagined in recent Hollywood films?

Keiller, Stephanie (2015) How has the ‘movie psychopath’ been reimagined in recent Hollywood films? BA dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    The psychopathic figure has a continued allure within popular culture. The concept of psychopathology has been formed and moulded across eras and has reflected with a shift in representation within Hollywood films. Though the definition of mental illness is entirely unknown this study will formulate a clinical history and popular cultural history to highlight how and why a change in interpretation has taken place. A particular focus on the depiction of The Joker in The Dark Knight (2008) and the characterisation of Jordan Belfort in The Wolf of Wall Street (2013) presenting a reimagined psychopath. Each case study displays a divergent interpretation; firstly The Joker demonstrates a ‘bad psychopath’ and secondly, Jordan Belfort depicts a ‘good psychopath’ utilising his abnormal skill set to succeed. These deconstructions lead to a comparative discussion of the character traits that foreground a imaginative responses to contemporary society’s captivation with mental abnormalities. This conclusion offers the idea that the spectrum of mental illness is widely developing and that popular cultural representations maybe seen to work in part in order distinguish what normality is.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries > School of Media and Performing Arts
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 25 Nov 2016 14:52
    Last Modified: 25 Nov 2016 14:52

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