Philosophy and Religious Studies
Journal or Book Title
The idea of a makeover, especially an extreme makeover, is appealing because it suggests that there is always a second chance. In our discussion of Neil LaBute’s 2003 film, three arenas of makeover are especially relevant: the makeover in real life, as television spectacle, and the remaking of characters in film. By now, most of us are familiar with the intentional upgrading of appearance. No matter how badly fate has dealt with our looks, experts can rework our bodies for the better. In contemporary society we have gone beyond changing hairstyles, makeup, and wardrobe; with plastic surgery, we can strengthen a man's jaw, shorten a woman's nose or make a child’s ears less obtrusive. Liposuction and tummy tucks can just as readily change the contours of a person's body so that he or she will be more attractive. Why should good looks just be a matter of luck? And individuals try to make themselves over through diet, exercise and the skein of self-help books ranging from improving finance to meliorating social relationships.
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Kupfer, Joseph H., "Extreme Makeover: Art and Morality in Neil LaBute’s The Shape of Things (2003)" (2013). Philosophy and Religious Studies Publications. 39.