Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Well There Goes Any Chance Of A Wonder Woman Movie

Although the article seems to be an op-ed piece rife with pop shots bordering on unprofessional, I found what little relevant news contained in this to be amusing. Why "amusing," you might ask? Because I tend to find most things amusing, especially when someone says or does something really fucking stupid that doesn't affect me in anyway. Those are the things I find the most amusing. Only slightly less if it does affect me.

Now, I'm not a big supporter of the feminist movement. I mean, I do believe that women deserve equal treatment as fellow human beings because I think it has been well proven that, in general, there is nothing men can do that some woman can't do just as well. Except maybe shoot sperm. I think men have pretty much cornered the market on that one. However, a very significant portion of the feminist movement doesn't want equality; they want dominance. Not all feminists, mind you, but just like the fundamentalist Christians who spoil it for the rest of the religion, there are feminists who are so bitter toward men that they actually want to dominate men. I support the woman's plight for equality and non-discrimination, however I don't support a complete role-reversal. Reverse prejudice is still prejudice. If you want to fight discrimination, fight for equality, don't fight for dominance, or you'll be turning into the very thing you hate.

I know the feminists have jumped all over this story because this is just the type of archaic thinking that justifies their existence. I think this story reveals less about one man's sexism, though and much more about the state of Hollywood in general. For a good number of years now, Hollywood has been saturating us with an abundance of subpar movies with bad writing, bad direction, corny concepts, and even inadequate acting, but as long as cars go boom, they think it's what the public wants. Finally people have started to figure out that they have better things to spend their money on, like watching good movies that came out ten or tweny years ago or more and the occasional good movie that slips through the crack now.

However now that the company has begun losing money by spending too much to produce an inadequate script, they have to blame someone. Instead of blaming any of the multitude of variables that go into producing a quality motion picture, Warner Bros president of production Jeff Robinov wisely decided that the entire female gender was to blame for the ineptitude of himself and the people under him in choosing which scripts to greenlight.

Whenever a movie with a male in the lead fails, which happens quite often, Jeff Robinov doesn't blame the entire male gender as somehow being inferior, so why women? Probably because he fully understands our culture is still fairly sexually imbalanced, and nowhere is it more so than in Hollywood. If he blames the entire female population for a few poorly-executed movies, he knows that the overwhelming majority of his peers will respond like, "Ha-ha, yeah! Women suck!" However if he decides to blame any number of the men involved in movie production, such as the directors, writers, or actors, the response will be: "Nooo, you suck!"

So are women competent enough to lead a good movie? I think the obvious answer is "Duuuuh." I think Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a shining example of this. The show went on for seven or eight years and spawned an entire subculture with a woman in the lead. It all depends on how well the story is written and produced. Then there was Thelma & Louise was practically forgotten. Oh, and there was that one movie — what was that? Terms of Endearment? Beaches? Maybe it was Fried Green Tomatoes? — that was practically a box office bomb. Here's a thought: Sigourney Weaver. Oh snap.

Maybe he should consider hiring competent screenwriters, directors who can faithfully adapt the stories, and find female leads who can carry their parts. We're running out of Sigourney Weavers, Jamie Lee Curtises, Geena Davises and Julia Robertses as fast as we're running out of Michael Douglases, Al Pacinos, and Jack Nicholsons. I guess less is being expected of actors now because we've been so inundated with increasing mediocrity over the past few years. If you want to gauge the problem with female leads in motion pictures, Elektra was a prime example. How the fuck did that movie ever get approved? It's a spinoff of an overall unsuccessful movie based on a comic character almost no one cares about played by Jennifer Garner, who has yet to impress me as an actress and whose face looks like a cardboard box. Perhaps if they could get around to producing a Wonder Woman movie, they could see what might happen when you make a movie about a character people care about. Of course, they'd probably screw it up with a project as poorly handled as the last Superman movie. All the great acting in the world can't save a bad script with bad direction. Not even Kevin Spacey could save Superman Returns, so what hope does Wonder Woman really have in modern Hollywood? Maybe if Chris Nolan were at the helm.

Although it's not really fair to blame women for the overall stupidity of men, it's something that has been happening since the dawn of time. The Book of Genesis predicted this reaction from Robinov when Adam blamed Eve for giving him the apple. Is it fair? No. Does it reflect badly on women in general? No, it reflects badly on men for not being lazy and responsible enough to admit their own mistakes. If they want to start making good movies again, they don't need to boycott women; they just need to buy better scripts and hire better talent. In that way, the entertainment industry could make no greater concession right now than firing Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci and assassinating Michael Bay.

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