Mrs. Doubtfire Essay, Research Paper
Mrs. Doubtfire is the creation of a man, unwilling to accept the role of being a weekend father. Daniel, the father, is determined to spend more time with his children and goes to extreme measures to do so. When Daniels wife, Miranda, starts divorce proceedings, he impersonates a middle-age female English nanny. Many of Daniels original traits and characteristics are in jeopardy when he has to learn a new way of presenting himself to his family. His verbal and body language must change, as well as his perception of others. Daniel also finds his way of expressing emotions not suitable for the role he takes on.
In the beginning of the movie, we find a fun-loving father with no real boundaries. Daniel explores life with his children and shows little discipline. As Mrs. Doubtfire, Daniel becomes firm, yet loving, demanding homework be done, house kept clean, and manners used. He talks fast and does not seem as self assured when he is himself, nor does he choose his words as carefully as when he becomes Mrs. Doubtfire. Daniel swears and expresses his anger in a loud, aggressive manner, but as Mrs. Doubtfire, he is able to slip in subtle jabs, to and about his ex-wife s new boyfriend. As Mrs. Doubtfire, Daniel initiates heart to heart talks with Miranda and hears things he was unable to hear as himself.
Daniel s body language also changed. I noticed that when he was Daniel, he walked swiftly with his head up. A sharp contrast to Mrs. Doubtfire s slow, rounded shoulder gait and eyes to the ground. As the children s father, Daniel is loving, but he isn t all huggy . He touches in a manly way, unlike Mrs. Doubtfire who cuddles with the kids and is much more comforting to them. I liked it when Mrs. Doubtfire was dancing with the vacuum. He started out dancing as a woman but as the music tempo sped up, Daniel came out with his exaggerated male movements.
As for Daniels perception of others, I think he saw people as too serious. He didn t understand their reason for such structure. This could have been because of his artistic nature, his extreme sensitivity or just plain immaturity. What ever it was, Daniel was unable to see their side. He saw no reason to cook or clean, pizza and clothes piles were just fine. As Mrs. Doubtfire though, Daniel saw the need and forced himself to learn.
Emotions were a problem for Daniel. He either was unemotional or overemotional. As I said before, he was a sensitive man, (quite an oxymoron). I saw his emotions coming together as the movie progressed. Becoming a woman enabled him to develop empathy for others and see things in a new perspective. The courtroom scene, when visitation rights were all but taken away showed this. Daniel was able to express himself in such a manner that the male judge thought it was an act. How could a man articulate such feelings?
This movie is about a person within a person. Changing perceptions and paradigm shifts would be the outcome if we all had the ability to be in two worlds at once. What a better world it would be.