Power is the cause of all evil. A villain refers to an antagonist or character who exhibits all the negative notions or traits in a certain film. He or she is the ‘bad person’ in that context. He or she fights against the distinguished hero in the film or protagonist. One can only be considered as a stereotypical villain can only be based on the notions that people hold. It is in an individuals’ context that it is possible to judge a given character. Villains do not view themselves as being bad and always stand out to protect their policies and views. On The Waterfront, a renowned film, commences by introducing a distinguished group of corrupt small racketeers that always run the many docks of Hoboken, in New Jersey, passing across the rivers from famous Manhattan. Johnny Friendly does not see the necessity in sharing or surrendering his power. He is mean and uses all means to protect his position. He is the leader of the famous Longshoreman Local Union. This position calls for strict management of funds and respect of one’s followers’ rights and perceptions. It is mandatory that a leader understands his society. It always ruins many leaders, and this is evident with Johnny Friendly. Terry Malloy always obeys the moral authority set before him throughout the film. He chooses to inform on all the corrupt officials of the union. This is a value that is cherished in all parts of this world; it is a real value and should be upheld in all instances. He makes the morally correct and valued decision. Johnny Friendly may appear as a person in need of sympathy, after being informed on, but his acts reveal a notion that is contrary to this. (Alleman10).
Once Johnny Friendly stamped his roots in power, he fights to maintain his position at all costs. He is quick to act out whenever there is a danger of being someone challenged by anyone for the power he had. This is common among all leaders who lack morals in society. They are always out to fight for positions that they abuse. They never allow people to exercises their rights, and they frustrate those who try to oppose them. His position at the Local Union of Longshoreman calls for muscle-flexing on a daily basis. The first moment Friendly comes to action; he goes out loud to give a speech at the bar, in a passionate manner. He describes his life in the past. He had undergone many hurdles to get where he was. He clawed for many scraps and also fought to carry on the streets during his youth days. An organization such as the Local Union was his last resort that would provide self-preservation; an act he certainly needed. He could not suit in any other environment as that one opened ways for him, in the best direction that he wanted. Money and power come out as the main motivations that spur him to succeed in life. He turns so greedy and wild that he never gives in to any calls for equality. At this instance, one can judge him as a hardworking person who deserved all that he had. One can support his mean acts since the latter suffered during his earlier years. He may get all the sympathy at this instance.
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When Terry appears to be on his side, as seen in the beginning of the play, Johnny Friendly pretends to be all smiles, and extremely quick to hug, pat him on the back, and also gives out extra $50bills. The moment when Terry’s goals diverged from his, he looks at Terry as his main enemy and target. Terry Malloy chooses to inform on Johnny Friendly and all the corrupt officials of the renowned union. This is a critical value that is hugely cherished in all parts of this world; it is a respected value and is essential in all aspects of life. He makes the morally correct and valued decision. This may, however, receive criticism from various walks of life. They were close friends with Friendly, at the beginning, but went on to inform on him. One may argue out that may be at one point they had both enjoyed the wealth that Friendly amassed from the Union through his corrupt deals. The friendship that they shared could portray this (Alleman 10). This may elicit sympathy on Friendly’s side. However, on the other hand, Terry’s character receives massive support from the famous Catholic priest and also a kind-hearted trainee in the teaching profession. These endorsements that he receives make the audience’s sympathy lie more on one side than others in the case. This means that people looked at the issue in support to Terry. Terry came out as a hero here. He put aside the friendship ties they had with Friendly, and sought to support the society (Alleman10). The vicious doubt and also derision that exists about his prominent choice always affects Terry and many of his friendships eminent throughout this film. However, when it comes to the closing scene, these feelings are changed profoundly. Their entire crew that is at work is seen following Terry who is affected, back to the place of work. They end up leaving Johnny Friendly in a devastating state which indicates that they had decided to follow a new leader. Johnny has no option rather than sticking to the people’s position. Societies always have these occasions and people decide to base on the policies that exist. They also base on the people who have their interests at heart. This group action dearly confirms the fact that it was their wish and calling to have Terry doing the acts he undertook. All of the evident previous discord is seen to merely generate eminent suspense until the famous mass action comes to play out. Johnny Friendly should not have allowed his personal greed and perceptions to rule him. His hard work, as in his youth, should have made him realize how painful it is to hurt and affect other negatively. He deserved the treatment he was subjected (Alleman11).
The main idea exhibited in most of power corrupting never applies only to the character Johnny Friendly. Mr. Upstairs, as in the film, decides to turn to Johnny Friendly in one instant. In this game of power, people never have true friends. The acquisition of more power means extra problem on the lives of individuals. They have to depend on other in order to survive. They are the main targets in this economy. Johnny Friendly is seen to abide by a similar code of conduct in the whole film. However, his character traits develop and vary in the wrong direction. He diverts into a person who is hated by many. The effect he had on other characters, such as the priest and the teacher trainee, changes dramatically. This is remarkably normal with any power regime. Those people who always relied on a leader always turn against him whenever he experiences a problem. Initially, Johnny Friendly is viewed as a very powerful leader and a man. His booming speeches and utterances command respect from all walks of life (Alleman10). The dissemination he exhibited, of beatings came out as cautionary tales. The other side of Johnny comes out as he is presented as a corrupt officer of the union, who exhibits faith in a lot of money and also power. This notion brings about acquisitions that are quantifiable and also measurable.
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The film On The Waterfront elucidates on the corrupt nature of many leaders of the modern world. Johnny Friendly forgot his struggles on his way to fame, and decided to take a change in his traits. His corrupt deeds landed him in trouble, and he could not get sympathy from the other characters in the film. It teaches on the disadvantages of corruption in society.
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