Friday, November 22, 2013

Gap-Toothed Women

Hot stuff they say.

Les Blank's documentary film Gap-Toothed Women (1987) sets forward dialogues on the perception of beauty. Highly influenced by popular culture, and the interpretation of beauty moulded by glamorised films and magazines, our generation is forced to model themselves in the way a television exhibits a beauty.
The film starts with a gap toothed woman sharing her experiences as a gap toothed kid; how her parents traced the eater of forbidden cookies and chocolates with the help of her signature gap tooth marks left on these foods. Director Les Blank goes on interviewing a seemingly expert on the subject about gap toothed women's etymology. The expert illustrates the gap toothed Wife of Bath, referring to an old text. The woman was a highly lecherous image wandering about her desires.
Les Blank draws on to this text and few prevailing taboos about gap toothed beauties to interpret the general's attitude towards gap toothed women. But Blank bases his film largely around the recollections of his gap toothed female interviewees. Almost everyone of them went on to accept this feature with time, but they certainly didn't grow up feeling easy and comfortable about it. They were mostly engaged around the set standards of beauty and ended up not feeling good about themselves or hating oneself about her look. One even rigged her teeth, nose and hair together to mould these organs like ones she comes across in films and Tv. 
Society has linked gap teeth of women to the marks of amorous disposition. Such women are supposed to be extremely sexy; 'hot stuff' as one interviewee cracks joke. The film centres itself on arguing beauty as either what's lies in inside or is it just an outside skin. 
The significance of the film lies on its crucial take on a minimal subject- rather it wasn't a subject for non gap toothed ones until the film pointed it out.

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