As anyone who’s known me longer than two months can attest, I’m a huge movie buff. Up until very recently, going to the movies was my weekly thing. Every Friday and/or Saturday, I’d hit up the local cinema, pay full price, and see a movie I may or may not like. So when I say that I’m not going to see something – that I flat-out refuse to spend money on it – that’s saying something.
Consider Avatar. Avatar has a lot of things that would be like catnip to a fantasy and sci-fi enthusiast like me. A new level of worldbuilding. Stunning visuals. Blue cat people. Zoe Saldana. Sigourney Weaver. Nevertheless, when I realized what kind of story I’d be getting (hey there, Mighty Whitey), I knew the only thing I would get if I saw Avatar was pissed off. Now, if the film started off from the Na’vi point of view . . .
The racebending going on in The Last Airbender was enough for me to say, “Hell no” to that shit. And I heard that the movie was a giant steaming pile of triceratops dung. Again, if I spent my money on this movie, I was only going to leave pissed off.
Are we starting to notice a pattern here? As soon as I saw the preview I knew I wasn’t going to see it. The posters and glowing praise from the expected sources (read: White and male-dominated media aka the mainstream) – all but calling it the the Citizen Kane of the 21st century – only made me even more suspicious.
First of all, I’ve seen enough The Rise of a Great White Man flicks to last me a lifetime. I do not need to see yet another movie telling me how unique and interesting all these rich, straight, able-bodied, White cisgender men are. I get it. Really. I’ve been hearing that same message since elementary school. Do I really want to put myself through that yet again?
I’ve been a nerd for a real long time, so Hollywood’s infatuation with wounded manchildren is neither new, nor interesting, nor meaningful to me. Geek angst is merely the most recent trend of it. There is no room in these stories for people like me (read: queer Black zaftig women). Once again, why would I put myself through that?
Then I hear about the fact that in The Social Network most of the women there serve as props for the male characters. Seriously. The writer himself said it. So basically, women are not characters in their own right. They’re in the movie to be “prizes” for men or to act as the conscience these men lack.
I should probably do a follow-up post about this trope. For real, why do women have to do all the emotional and moral heavy-lifting for male characters in so many films?
That did it. I’m not going to bother spending my meager disposable income on a ticket to The Social Network because it’s just going to piss me off.
What’s that, you say? It’s so well-made? The script is great? The acting was terrific?
And . . . ?
Some things are more important than entertainment. How about a break from the constant reminder that rich, straight, able-bodied cisgender White men rule the world?