The film that I chose to explain Ideology is ‘The Platform’. The film is a 2019 film picked by Netflix. The film was set in a dystopian, futuristic prison known as The Hole, where the cells are stacked on top of one another. Each floor has a cell and in the center of each cell, there is a hole through which the platform passes. From the first floor to the last, the platform brings food to the prisoners. As it will instantly come back to mind, whereas the platform descends towards “the pit”, food gets less and fewer. This is the first aspect that the director highlights: food is the semiotic sign of a specific logic that characterizes the intention of the particular structure of the prison. The more the platform goes down, the less food it brings thus there’s a distinction between the varied prisoners. The detainees change cell every month. On the last day, they are sent to sleep with gas and then awakened, at the beginning of the new month, inside a cell that can be among those destined to get more food, or in the midst of those destined to a total lack of supplies.
Food is a form of representation of the conflict between individuals since it’s because of food or lack of it that men lose the light of reason. The vision of a “spontaneous solidarity”, as it’s defined within the film; Presupposes that at each level the food is eaten by caloric ration necessary for each individual. The ideology that can be seen in the film is the tragedy of the commons, the prisoner’s dilemma where individually every person’s incentive is self-serving, which is not so good for society. It would be much better to come to an agreement where we can say using somewhat less so that there’s a benefit for everyone. But one would always go back to the situation of overuse unless you have enforcement or some code of conduct among these strong individuals.
The next ideology that can be seen in the movie is populism versus Marxism versus capitalism, and Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, designing a society where we are all behind this veil and don’t know whether we are going to be rich or poor or what our natural abilities are. Certainly, we wouldn’t want to take a chance on not knowing that’s not the kind of society I think anybody would desire to live in. Everyone loses human empathy because they are in a fight for their lives for survival and can’t afford to be self-actualized and have empathy because they don’t even have anything to eat.
The film is also a metaphor of capitalism and the class system, the story sees a banquet of food descend from above on a platform, leaving the upper-tier of prisoners to eat first, while those lower and lower down the literal food chain left fighting for scraps. Netflix describes this Spanish film as "a twisted social allegory concerning humankind at its darkest and hungriest”. We come to understand the rules of The Hole through Goreng (Ivan Massague), a newcomer to the prison, who is stuck in cell forty-eight with Trimagasi (Zorion Eguileor). Goreng came to the hole voluntarily for six months in exchange for an accredited diploma, but it’s clear he had no idea how horrific the prison was. Each prisoner gets to bring one object with them, and Goreng brought a book with him. Every month, the prisoners are gassed and brought to a new level. The first time this happens, Goreng wakes up tied down on level 171.
When the platform of food drops down, it explains that 47 other prisoners would have eaten before them, meaning they are left with the scraps. The desperation of those further down the prison chain is clear as they resort to violence and even murder to try and get more food. As the film progresses, viewers come to see a young girl, who is trapped at the very bottom of The Hole. It transpires the child is Miharu’s (Alexandra Masangkay) daughter, and she has been protecting her offspring and keeping her healthy in dire circumstances. The platform finally stops for good at Level 333, the last level, Goreng and Baharat, get off the platform, to help the child, panna cotta in hand, and the platform leaves without them. Initially, the fact that they have the panna cotta still means that the room would grow unbearably hot or cold, but it doesn’t. Stuck on Level 333, they give the child the panna cotta to eat. After a few moments, the platform shoots to the top of the prison without them.
It seems that Miharu’s insistence to get to the bottom of the hole isn’t to find her daughter only, but also to make sure she can make it through the system unharmed. As the girl and Goreng attempt to get to the top of the prison, Goreng finds himself unable to as he has been too brutalized by the system, which sees him stuck in the same place. However, the girl makes her way to safety. Miharu’s daughter here has acted as a metaphor of human resilience throughout even the darkest and most difficult times and further pushes the notion that only real change can come from the innocence of youth.
The irony within The Platform is that there is more than enough food and resources within The Hole -a metaphor for capitalism. With an economic system, we are all imprisoned, to satisfy all the prisoners. However, those at the top; the wealthy, overconsume and are given no incentive or reason to want to share, leading to inequality, pain, and suffering.
3 weeks, 2 days ago by anunag72
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