miss_s_b: (Self: boobies)
miss_s_b ([personal profile] miss_s_b) wrote2009-06-15 20:59

One for the Boys - The Scar Crow #ffw09

Last night, as part of the FFW, there was a screening of a film called The Scar Crow, and a Q&A session with cast and crew afterwards. The film had great effects and was beautifully and creatively shot, especially given the tiny budget and shooting timescale, but it just REEKED of misogyny. I can't give specifics without spoilers, but I had many, many problems with the film. Now, you can say this about a lot of films, including many that I really love. But the classic Hammer/Amicus/etc. films get something of a pass due to being made 30, 40, 50 years ago. This film was made last year. The ONLY named female characters were "evil", apart from the "sympathetic character" - i.e. the one who deserves a Well Done For Not Being A Rapist Cookie - 's girlfriend, who was merely peripheral AND stupid. There's an incestuous "lesbian" kiss, which the director stated in the Q&A he had put in because his 12 year old son had asked for some hot lesbo action.

And you know what?

Even as I type this I can feel the internet's reaction to me criticising the film for these reasons. It's just one film - it's not systemic. Not all films are like that! - just like not all men are like that. Well, YOU might have been offended, but I wasn't, and therefore it's not a problem. So you're saying we ought to ban films with hot lesbo action/films with female bad guys/etc. I thought you were a liberal?

etc. etc. et fucking cetera.

It's not just systemic in horror (and yes, I DID have an audible intake of breath when the director claimed to have been subverting expectations by shooting a gore flick with evil women and hot lesbo action in it). It's not just systemic in films. It's not just endemic in entertainment. It's endemic in life.

Are we all ready for the chorus of Oh, you're exaggerating! I don't know anyone who finds this a problem, girls? Boys, I hate to break this to you, but perhaps nobody has told you they find this sort of shit a problem because they know what your reaction will be. Do you ever find yourself thinking well harrassment/sexual assault/rape can't be that much of a problem because I don't know anyone who has been harrassed/assaulted/raped? I bet you a tenner that you do. For starters, if you know me, you do.

And do you know what? Even with all that said, I wouldn't want to ban films like this. I'd just like to live in a world where I can make this sort of criticism without having to pre-emptively defend myself against accusations of being a strident whinging harpie. I'd settle for that, but it'd be even nicer if I could go and see a gore flick where it's the men who are relentlessly objectified, and the women who are held forth as praiseworthy for not being rapists... Not because I think reverse discrimination is in any way the way forward, but just because it would be SUCH a fucking novelty.

Using the icon I have is a defensive action too. It's saying I know that women are objectified on the basis of their bodies, and I know it happens to me, and I can cope with it. It's saying I realise that I am part of the problem here. It's saying look, even though I have been raped, I have a sense of humour about stuff like this.

Yeah, I'm in a really good mood today.

Thanks to [personal profile] puddingcat for pointing me at most of the articles I link to.



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etoile: (Default)

[personal profile] etoile 2009-06-15 21:06 (UTC)(link)
*hugs, hugs and more hugs*
innerbrat: (heart + stomach)

[personal profile] innerbrat 2009-06-15 21:09 (UTC)(link)
My problem wasn't with the movie itself, but with the atmosphere in the cinema itself. Maybe I was too aware the actors were sitting behind me, and the writers were in the same room, but I was in a room of people laughing at banter about a jolly rape spree, and I felt alone. I felt that any complaints I could have wouldn't be welcome and would be silenced, and I felt unimportant.
karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Default)

[personal profile] karohemd 2009-06-15 21:12 (UTC)(link)
I did warn you that it was sexist and when even I think that, there has to be something wrong with it (apart from the plot holes). As I said to Mat, I didn't come along to that screening because I'd just have wanted to punch all of the male cast...
karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Default)

[personal profile] karohemd 2009-06-15 22:07 (UTC)(link)
LVK is definitely the worse film in pretty much all aspects and I cringed a lot more than I did in Scar Crow. The bad stuff seemed to be more deliberate in LVK (or simply the writers not knowing any better, which you get if you ever watched H&C) while SC tried to be more "realistic" in portraying common denominator blokes (binge drinking and trying to shag everything that moves). It doesn't make it any better, it just changes the context. Does this make sense?
LVK also has a lot more puerile potty talk.

No, I wouldn't recommend watching LVK, to anyone, really.
ginasketch: (Default)

[personal profile] ginasketch 2009-06-16 12:54 (UTC)(link)
Mike and I saw the LVK trailer before Watchmen and we both looked at each other with the unspoken words "I'll be giving that a miss then."
karohemd: (Photo)

Randomly, a silly photo of Byron

[personal profile] karohemd 2009-06-15 23:01 (UTC)(link)
I can haz pasta?

Next time I'm up I need to bring some decent lighting (or take photos during the day).
karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Default)

Re: Randomly, a silly photo of Byron

[personal profile] karohemd 2009-06-16 15:42 (UTC)(link)
:o)
ginasketch: (Default)

Re: Randomly, a silly photo of Byron

[personal profile] ginasketch 2009-06-16 12:54 (UTC)(link)
<3
el_staplador: (Default)

[personal profile] el_staplador 2009-06-16 07:13 (UTC)(link)
*hugs*

Good links.
djm4: (Default)

[personal profile] djm4 2009-06-16 09:20 (UTC)(link)
I wouldn't join the chorus.

This is not me saying that the chorus doesn't exist - I come across it too, and try to speak against it when I hear it. This is not me complaining that you're stereotyping and generalising about men. This is not me attempting to derail, ad if this is derailing, I hope you'll tell me.

This is just me putting down a marker that says 'I agree with you'. Because I think it's important for men to say it, too, as datapoints, nothing more.
ext_51145: (Default)

[identity profile] andrewhickey.info 2009-06-16 09:56 (UTC)(link)
I agree with this.
bard: While playing Shylock (Default)

[personal profile] bard 2009-06-16 10:18 (UTC)(link)
On the other hand, some of us entirely agree with you. Not only does this kind of LCD attitude to the film-watcher piss me off because of its perpetuation of misogyny and chauvinism, it pisses me off because it makes the films worse.

I appreciate that "It's bad art" is less of a serious criticism than "it's arrogant, thoughtless and explicitly intended to appeal to the stupidest age of any man, the 12-yr old". It is, however, a significant point if we're going to get 'em to change. I've been reading a variety of things of late which discussed William Goldman's aphorism about Hollywood studios: "no-one really knows anything". They're always shocked when something they didn't think would sell goes well. And ime, half the time that's because it had some real women in it. Make better movies, and you'll do better with them. Arts reflects life, and life has real women in; when will Hollywood figure that out?

[personal profile] bagpuss 2009-06-16 10:41 (UTC)(link)
This is a very interesting article which goes someway to explaining why many movies while not as overtly sexist as this are very poor

Why film school teaches screen writers not to pass the bechdel test

[personal profile] bagpuss 2009-06-16 12:58 (UTC)(link)
Its a shame its very difficult to get round the network execubots
innerbrat: (thing)

[personal profile] innerbrat 2009-06-16 13:22 (UTC)(link)
And yet an independent film should have no such excuses.

[personal profile] bagpuss 2009-06-16 14:38 (UTC)(link)
other than independent films still need to be distributed and the distributors have to do what the network execubots says

If you read the comments apparently William Goldman have a term for this, films like say Juno are non recurring phenomenon so never change the general opinion of the network execubots

[personal profile] bagpuss 2009-06-16 14:39 (UTC)(link)
as a note I would love to be able to change this it would improve cinema no end but I don't know how to go about it
innerbrat: (heart + stomach)

[personal profile] innerbrat 2009-06-16 14:44 (UTC)(link)
I love that term 'non-recurring phenomenon' in a way that is entirely not loving it. On Saturday night, we saw Aliens, and [personal profile] matgb wondered if any one movie could be said to have inspired so much pop culture.

And yet, there has still only ever been one Ripley.

[personal profile] bagpuss 2009-06-16 14:52 (UTC)(link)
there also is Sarah Conner of course
innerbrat: (heart + stomach)

[personal profile] innerbrat 2009-06-16 15:05 (UTC)(link)
This is true, but it's very telling that she's completely motivated by her relationship to John, isn't even in the most recent movie, and the TV series bearing her name has been cancelled to make way for that movie.
innerbrat: (heart + stomach)

[personal profile] innerbrat 2009-06-16 15:06 (UTC)(link)
As a CHARACTER. Not even as an object. Do they not even notice this while loving her?
ginasketch: (Default)

[personal profile] ginasketch 2009-06-16 15:34 (UTC)(link)
You pretty much know my opinion on this, and anyone who starts whining that Ripley is a "man."

Oh, I'm sorry, I forgot only men could be strong characters/kickass. snarl.
ginasketch: (Default)

[personal profile] ginasketch 2009-06-16 12:53 (UTC)(link)
One to avoid then.