Hollywood uses a yellow filter in films about Mexico. Is that racism?
The trailer for Netflix’s “Tyler Rake: Operation Rescue” restarted that debate, which continues to be illuminated behind the scenes of the industry.
Maybe he never noticed, but movies about Mexico usually have some sort of yellow filter on the pictures. Now that you think about it, did you realize that it was true, didn’t you? The same goes for filming past stories in India or Southeast Asia. The explanation is more or less simple: the filmmakers’ goal is to saturate these tones and convey the idea of a hot, dry, tropical climate.
In practice, the effect may not be entirely desirable, as the feeling conveyed in the picture with this type of coloring can be that of an unhealthy, dangerous and even uglier place. In some cases this does not correspond to the reality of the countries which served as the scenario for the arguments.
This is a recurring situation in films, especially American ones, and has been discussed again since Netflix released the trailer for Tyler Rake: Operation Rescue, the film starring Chris Hemsworth that premiered last April .
“It’s unsettling. This goes hand in hand with the perception of these places and people by Western racists, especially when you think about how lively and colorful the cultures of these countries are. The application of these filters creates stereotypes about these places and the people who live there, ”explained the Californian analyst Sulymon, whose family comes from India, Pakistan and Afghanistan, to the“ Matador Network ”.
🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️♂🏻♂️🏃🏻 ♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️🏃🏻♂️Chris Hemsworth EXTRACTION 🧨💥🧨💥🧨💥🧨💥🧨💥🧨💥 on Netflix April 24th pic.twitter.com/TqrS62ZHkK
– NetflixFilm (@NetflixFilm) April 20, 2020
This idea of making places like war zones poorer or more polluted yellowish is deeply rooted in American cinema and even in series like “The Darjeeling Limited” or “Traffic – Nobody Leaves Ileso”. With respect to “Tyler Rake: Operation of Rescue,” controversy grew when a meme appeared on Twitter that said the filmmakers wore brownish sunglasses when the scenes were shot in Mexico.
One way to make this detail even more relevant was with a video published by Netflix itself. In an attempt to show how some of the scenes in the film were shot, he juxtaposes the backstage and film footage, with the tonal difference being clear.
In addition to the yellow filter, which does not depict the reality of the countries it wants to show, this intent has been accused of being racist. These tones are used in cases where there are frequent cartels, gangs, poverty and the protagonist responsible for saving the whole story is usually naturally white.
In contrast to this, it can also be said that in western landscapes, and especially in American or European landscapes, a blue or green tint filter is often used, which gives the image a more beautiful aspect.
American producers when the scene of a movie takes place in Mexico pic.twitter.com/epe9M31K7Y
– Davy (@SimplyDavy) April 21, 2021