Movies Men Have Been Trying to Get Women to Care About for Decades
Miles Klee

“You could chalk that up to Villeneuve, whose resume includes a film about a real-life mass murderer known to have misogynist motives […]”

You could chalk it up to that, but you’d be willfully ignoring that film’s text as a formalist mourning for the victims of an unstable man who vents his misogynistic frustrations with women (particularly the gunman’s perverse idea of “feminists”) through an irrational act of violence that far exceeds any damage to his insecure self-image done by them. If anything, Polytechnique could easily be used as validating propaganda by the more aggressive separatists under feminism’s umbrella.

This isn’t condescendingly saying “you didn’t get it” either — it’s not even subtext. You’d honestly had to have not seen the film — or at least dozed off while watching it — to assert that Villeneuve’s thematic intent was remotely malicious. Eulogizing the victims (all of whose families gave approval after viewing) and showcasing how insecure and dangerous men like the gunman can be served as the whole ethos of the film, from the surface to the deep end. It’s not even subtext.

It’s suspicious that the very article you linked in that off-base attempt at an accusation also brings this up, along with dozens of other publications since its release. (And so is conveniently ignoring his 2016 film Arrival featuring an strong, intelligent, and standard-subverting female lead, both in sci-fi and in general.)

(I don’t care for Villeneuve much at all personall y — most of his films (outside of Sicario and Arrival) came across to me as basic Classicism disguised by solid lighting with driving moody scores and set design — and I haven’t seen the new Blade Runner and don’t plan to for a while.)

“Trouble is, Blade Runner’s neckbeard fanbase won’t take ‘not my cup of tea’ for an answer.”

Nothing in your article quantifies this supposed “not my cup of tea” claim: you spend the following paragraphs championing the words of several people who are putting forward specific, hard-bodied criticisms for why they don’t like these films. So asserting that these men just “can’t handle” what is commonly used to cite a simple difference of aesthetic preferences is misleading, which I can only assume was your intent when it’s introduced by yet another meaningless attack on that group’s character.

“one of whom has also told her multiple times ‘to give Infinite Jest a chance.’”

I’m not sure what this is supposed to mean. Is it an inside joke? Is meant to make people feel like they should laugh? Or is it another self-congratulatory scoff at people who might have enjoyed that book?

“The trouble arises when guys think they’ve concocted a syllabus for the cinematic education of heretofore deprived women”

I’m sure there are a lot men who act like this, and not just towards women — though calling them “men” collectively might be a bit premature; I’d wager most of the people who hold these attitudes are still working through adolescence. (Either that or they have a YouTube channel or something.) I’m also sure there are a lot of men who are overtly passionate about film, regardless of how deep their knowledge of that world reaches.

Either way, responding with offense and backhanded accusations can only serve to provoke that group’s attitude more. Do you really think even one person from the crowd you’re pointing at is going to read this and experience a sudden, profound self-realization? I doubt it. So why prod on about something so trivial?

“This seems to me the heart of the matter — that in youth boys rely on the dumbed-down psychological catharsis you get from effects-laden action blockbusters and operatic gangster sagas. When you start to pick apart these plots, you threaten fragile egos informed by the principles of antiheroes with whom they identified in adolescence.”

Why write an article proposing that men possess some sort of ingrained superiority towards women when it comes film, but spend the whole time writing equally shallow, pompous jabs intended to debase their character in every way possible? In just two brief sentences above, you call that group unintelligent, formulaic, easily entertained, simple-minded, insecure, and finalize it all by generalizing that all boys’ lives play out in virtually identical ways from birth, and implying none of them grow as people past adolescence. Yet, ironically, here you are rewarding yourself and your peers for being ‘the exception’, possibly superseding the smugness of those you’ve set your sights on.

And all this, for what? Because you’ve heard from your female friends about (or possibly experienced yourself) a handful of guys who have been too pushy with an otherwise generic list of their favorite films? That’s what is supposed warrant the childish, self-satisfying tantrum of an article above? Geez.

“To put it another way: Guys, can you remember when your girlfriend not only strong-armed you into watching a film but demanded you find the value in it? And refused to entertain a read even slightly opposed to their own, acting like any quibble you had was a stain on your intelligence? No? Then do the world a favor […]”

So because you’ve never experienced a girl do this too, that justifies the claim that no girl has ever done it, and then going further to imply that girls can’t be narcissistic or condescending towards boys (or anyone else for that matter)? Or are you saying that because you’ve seen boys act that way, then girls couldn’t possibly imitate that behavior?

And why are you telling them to “do the world” favor as if there’s some kind of commonly recognized epidemic on a national (or even regional) level of men being aggressively condescending towards women about movies? The only thing this does is dismantle your article down to “self-hating, self-important white guy seeking validation generalizes trivial experience as a critical issue in need of attention, while somehow talking down to people he says need to get over themselves.”

It’s telling that you wrote this article relying on outside sources for every piece that resembles a thought, while the only thing you actually contributed yourself were snide, ad hom remarks that I assume are supposed to substitute a point? Well, I guess they would have to, because your article doesn’t have an actual point. It’s just you jerking off about how much better you are than those “other guys” who claim are the ones with insecurity issues and overblown egos.

You can add on the bonus irony of criticizing those types guys for supposed misogyny, while you’re no better for perpetuating the “females made of glass” image, constantly in need of your protection and sympathy while living under infinite victimhood. Deplorable.

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