Monday, February 18, 2008

The Big Lebowski

A few guys have talked about the class struggles present in the Big Lebowski, and I had never really thought that much about it, but it's very interesting to look at. The Dude, clearly a character representing the lower class, gets no respect from those in the upper class (Jeffery Lebowski and Jackie Treehorn), and is continually used and abused by them. Even Maude, who is the real source of the Lebowski fortune and a much more positive portrayal of the upper class, uses the Dude to try to get herself pregnant. Like most other things in the movie, it's hard for me to figure out exactly what the Coen brothers are trying to say about the lower and upper classes. Making the Dude the protagonist and showing Jeffery Lebowski as a vain, fake, megalomaniac would certainly suggest that the Coens are on the side of the lower class, but there are a couple of things that make me think otherwise. The Dude really doesn't change throughout the movie, and it is assumed he is still the lazy bum he was at the beginning. Plus, the Dude's companion, Walter, is portrayed as absolutely ridiculous and oafish, which would also contradict that notion. Overall, this is a great and hilarious movie, whether or not it has a clear (or any) meaning.


sb said...

I don't think of the Dude as lower class and he certainly isn't "working" class. He said that he went to college so he had money at one time.
He was probably raised in a middle class or upper middle class home and he "dropped Out".

Christina H said...

He actually was related to the person who invented the Rubix Cube and inherited money from him/her, which is why he has enough money to pay the rent and but the fixings for his white russians