Film Noir Influence in The Virgin Suicides

Teenage suicide was not unheard of before the nineteen-nineties, but its growing instances during this period led people to acknowledge the problem. Schools even started publishing materials to educate students and parents about the phenomena. The Virgin Suicides confronts this delicate topic straightforward. Sofia Coppola blends elements of her own style with those of classic film noir to show how these young individuals become so alienated in a world they barely know or understand. Through the eyes of five sheltered teenage girls, Coppola opens up a dark universe of isolation.

From the start of the film, it is acknowledged that the five Lisbon girls all died before they made it to adulthood. A small group of boys, now men, from the Lisbon’s neighborhood have never forgotten about the mysterious sisters whom they have never come to completely figure out. One of the men narrates the film and informs the viewer that he and his friends still gather at every high school reunion and birthday party to discuss the fate of the Lisbon girls.

The film then flashes back to their childhood circa 1975, and introduces the girls as they get out of their family’s station wagon. Cecilia is the youngest at 13, preceded by Lux, Bonnie, Mary, and Therese whom were all one year older than another. All of the girls seem so young, innocent, and beautiful. However, it is soon revealed that Cecilia has just gotten out of the hospital after an attempted suicide.

Cecilia begins seeing a therapist who recommends that the strict Lisbon’s allow their daughters to have a party to cheer the girls up and enable them to interact with boys and girls their own age. Cecilia is upset by a group of her peers making fun of a child with Down syndrome. She feels that she will never really belong to society either, and so she runs upstairs and jumps from her window. Her second attempt at suicide is successful since she lands on a pointed, wrought iron fence. The rest of the film deals with the Lisbon’s struggle to cope with this new reality. In the end, the remaining sisters decide that Cecilia was right about the world being a bleak and lonely place where existence itself is futile, and so they decide to join her by taking their own lives.

Although The Virgin Suicides is by no means a classic film noir, it is undeniable that Coppola was influenced by the ideas that it brings to mind. The mood of some scenes, for example, has parallels with that of film noir. After all, Coppola intends to bring the audience to the bizarre and heavy world in which these doomed girls live. Both of the suicide scenes and the scene when Trip leaves Lux in the middle of the football field after having sex with her evoke a sense of uneasiness and inconceivability that is definitely characteristic of film noir. The Virgin Suicides is also influenced by noir themes and style. The film is primarily about these teenage girls feeling separated from the crowd, cooped up in the half-reality that was their home. Everything about the Lisbon house is drab and gray. There is never direct sunlight, or high-key lighting inside the Lisbon home. It is as if the girls are covered in cobwebs like little china dolls being preserved in a basement somewhere. Coppola uses light throughout the film to symbolize life and change, like the cuts to outdoor time-lapsed shots with the sun glowing in the background. This also shows that things outside are changing, but the Lisbon girls are forced to remain stagnant in their rooms.

The Virgin Suicides also boasts a particularly edgy score for the time period it was meant to represent. Track titles include “Cemetery Party”, “Dirty Trip”, and “Bathroom Girl.” These are songs Mrs. Lisbon would most definitely not allow her children to listen to. Coppola even makes a point of this by showing Lux burning all of her rock CD’s at the hands of her mother. This represents the authority the girls’ parents still have over their lives, but the score still playing throughout the movie represents their struggle to make a place for themselves. Perhaps the girls would have made it and they were simply being suffocated. More likely, however, is that the girls saw no hope in living for a future they saw as lonely, awkward, and unfulfilling.

The Virgin Suicides also departs from noir, and more modern filmmaking conventions are noticed. Lux Lisbon is not the classic femme fatale of film noir. She knows her sex appeal and that she can use it to her advantage, yet she is not trying to deceive the men she sleeps with. Lux is simply trying to justify what happened with Trip. She had sex with him after their Homecoming dance because she thought he cared about her, and then he just left her asleep on the football field. Lux, being only fifteen years old, was really affected by this. She then reacts by trying to prove to herself that sex means nothing. Then it would be okay if she lost her virginity to Trip for no good reason.

The story of the ill-fated Lisbon sisters needed to be told in a modern context, while the world they live in and the experiences they have are sometimes noir. Therefore, a true infusion of a few different styles and genres were required. Sofia Coppola does a wonderful job of mixing conventions of film noir with her own thematic style in the direction of The Virgin Suicides. The music and lighting of the film are akin to noir, as is the general theme of the film and it’s setting where days blend together and even sex is meaningless. However, none of the sisters quite resemble a classic femme fatale. Also, the boys may be like junior detectives, but they have no ulterior or hidden motives. Their respect and wonderment of the Lisbon sisters is sincere, and that is something that cannot exist in a film noir.

Pregnant Sex Positions

It is common for people to worry about sexual intercourse during pregnancy; the main concern is that it will harm the baby. You have nothing to worry about. The baby is protected by amniotic fluid. Some women experience a lessening of their libido, while others experience a rise; libido varies from woman to woman and also the stage of pregnancy. Sexual intercourse can be enjoyed during pregnancy. The pregnant sex positions that follow will help improve your sex life during pregnancy.

As the women goes through her stages of pregnancy, it will become increasingly difficult to have sexual intercourse. The missionary position should be avoided, as too should any position which arranges the woman on her back.

Side-by-Side – The woman should lie on her side with the man behind in a spooning position. If the woman requires clitoral stimulation her partner can reach around or she can provide the stimulation herself.

Woman On Top – The man will lie on his back and the woman will straddle him. This position is not quite as comfortable as the spooning sex position but it allows for deeper penetration and clitoral stimulation. The woman can also try the reverse-cowgirl position; the same as the woman on top but in reverse, facing his feet. This man lead to a g-spot orgasm.

Rear Entry – The woman can lean against a wall or a bed and the man will approach from behind. This affords deep penetration and can be more erotic for the man than spooning or woman on top.

Oral Sex – Plenty of oral sex should be encouraged during pregnancy. Ensure the woman does not lie on her back. A favorite position is with the woman lying on her side and with the man parting her thighs.

So when thinking of pregnant sex positions we need to consider spooning, woman on top, rear entry and oodles of oral sex. These positions will put zero stress on the baby or the Mother and should enable the man and woman to enjoy a normal sex life.

How to Educate Your Child About Sex

Many parents think that talking about sex in front of their kids may harm their brain and take them in the wrong way. But this is totally a misconception. Even avoidance of sex education can make more harm to the kids. You may adopt the following methods to educate your child about sex.

1. Try to teach sex to your child in a matter of fact manner, in the same manner as you would talk about any matter with them.

2. Do not lecture. Be persuasive and sympathetic and make sure the child’s interest remains sustained and element of curiosity stays on.

3. If a child poses any question, during the course of sex education, that must be replied to allay his doubts and/or misconceptions.

4. Your discussion should not be around disclosure of biological factors alone. It should also include values, emotions, decision making also, since the young ones value such qualities.

5. Puberty begins from the tenth year, when physical changes like pubic hair, erection of clitoris, enlargement of breast and prominence of nipples, menstruation etc start taking places. So, it is always better to educate the child about sex before the said changes surface.

6. Electronic media, porno magazines and literature, x-rated films have already enhanced children’s knowledge about homosexuality, heterosexuality, prostitution, masturbation, self-abuse or child-abuse, etc. So, such aspect must also be part of a parent’s sex education program.

7. Tell your child what is erection of penis and of clitoris and also what is masturbation, especially to girls. Also explain how and when venereal diseases, AIDS, HIV problems set in. Respond to child’s enquiries in a receptive, sympathetic and friendly way, so that they don’t feel that they have been landed in an awkward position. Let them stay normal.

8. Include and encourage your child to put any question, concerning the subject, to you and, when asked, be simple explicit.

Advantage of Sex Education

1. It will lay emphasis on behavioral, biological, psychological, cultural, clinical aspects.

2. Sexual problems can be prevented by better sex education.