Historical Inaccuracy in Johnny Tremain

April 27, 2022 by Essay Writer

Disney often recomposes films or cartoons based on historical events and novels, and these movies are beneficial to educate children history using an alternative source so that people could better understand and accept the history. To cater the targeted audiences, such as parents and children, Disney will need to adjust some plots and presentation. The change shows the importance of how children are presented, in order to cultivate a correct belief and knowledge. For example, blood and cruelty are often avoided by the film so that children will not learn the negative contents. The film, Johnny Tremain, directed by Robert Stevenson in 1957, and it is an example of historical fiction. Disney did not follow historical truth because they overshow the patriotism of people and inaccurate description of the events to exaggerate the meaning to make the story more explicit.

First of all, the movie shows much patriotism, which states that most people believe in America, and they are willing to fight for the country against England. The movie describes the context by showing how patriotic that people were, while facing the pressure from England. In the film, many people were willing to resist Britain because they love the land and freedom in America. As the matter of fact, many people were hesitating which side to support. Some people might keep loyalty to the British government, and some people may not like the risk to change. Therefore, many people did not support the revolution because they want a peaceful life. The film has an over presentation of patriotism because the film wants to tell audience how much the citizens at the time want to pursue democratic and fair rights for people and land they live with, which facilitate to show the plots and emphasis of the film.

Secondly, In the scene where people dressed and painted their face as Indian figures while raided the tea boats in Boston Harbor. It is true that people dressed in like that, but not all of them are dresses and disguised according to historical records. The main difference between the movie and fact is that the attitudes of the crowd is different. In the movie, people marched into the harbor with lights and torches directly aimed at dumping the tea, they dressed like Indians more for a cultural identification. The whole scene in the movie gives out a message that the crowd has the attitude of total rejection on the British authority, bravely and fearlessly. In addition, the crowd seems to be well organized with similar clothes and paints. In fact, the crowd was not organized to be dressed up as Indians, but rather in their own decision. Each people in the crowd may know each other, but it was not an activity that is under well planned. The people however, dressed up as Indians not to show their pride, but in fear of being recognized latter by the authority. The crowd was still not brave enough to totally rebel against the British government and people are in fear of their own life. The movie made the scene in a tone full of bravely and rebel on purpose. It was a time a decade after the WW2, which US is still within the patriotic atmosphere of the war. This movie gives people empathy on their country, and further emphasize the key characteristic of the American spirit, which consists of bravery and resistance against imperialism.

In conclusion, Disney alters historical fact because they want to facilitate presentation of the historical events by enhancing patriotism and inaccurate explanation of the event. The description of patriotism and Indian decoration could emphasize the plots and them of the film, which also provides a good image of the fighters of independence.

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