Sorry, it’s been a while, but I had a project I was rushing to finish on a deadline, and I had to spend all my spare time on that, I even strained my eyes and hands from spending so much time typing.
That said, I have a bit of a different topic for you all, just a break from the anime and life stories I’ve been mostly doing.
I want to talk about two movies I watched in the last month for the first time. “What Women Want” (original with Mel Gibson) and “Ocean’s 8.”
Now, at first glance, you may say, these two movies have absolutely nothing in common.
But I would make the argument, they both have one thing in common: Unintentionally sexist writing.
I will give the screenwriters the benefit of the doubt, I think “What Women Want” Was really intended to be a good movie, and actually, I don’t have an issue with how women were portrayed in the movie. I thought it did a good job of making us human, but not perfect.
I did have an issue with how men were portrayed, however.
I don’t know why it is, but any time a movie decides to focus on one gender, they tend to make the other one look bad, or oversimplified.
I won’t bash on this movie too much, I really liked Mel Gibson’s acting in it, and his change in the movie made sense, but, it seems a little odd to me how there was no other male character int eh movie that was at all nice to women, respectful of women, or a decent human being. Not one that was focused on, anyway. all the men seemed wiling to take advantage of women whenever they could.
Now, some cynical woman is going to say “And so? That’s how men are.”
If you just thought that, than may I ask you, the sexist, to please leave the site… just kidding, you can stick around I want you to read this.
And actually, before some man goes off about feminists, guess who I’ve hear the most male sexism from in my life? Other men.
My father used to tell me regularly that men were “pigs” that they would take advantage of girls any chance they got (in so many words), and wouldn’t mind if a random woman came up and kissed them out of nowhere (implying consent for men is no big deal), and, my favorite item, that men weren’t hard to please, just “feed us, love us, and leave us alone.” Meaning, cook, sex and affection, and never nag about anything.
Yep, that’s all it takes girls, hope you’re taking notes. Men aren’t complicated at all.
Ironically, my dad is a far more complicated person than that, who I later realized is just impossible to please period, and doesn’t follow his own rules for male bliss.
He also made fun of me for trying to understand men and husbands more (yes, this all has a point to my main subject, I know I tend to go off into anecdotes).
Geez, y’all men should be thankful a girl like me took time, on purpose, to learn more about men. I wish men would do that about women, actually, I know a lot of them have, just not the ones I’ve met.
Come to think of it, I basically wanted what Nick wants, to get to know how men think. And, I can say, I haven’t figured it out yet, no matter how much I studied it. In fact, based on books, I don’t see any gaping difference between how men and women think. Anime can often show this, ironically, by making women the snippy, violent characters, and men the sniveling, meek wimps. Anime is famously sexist too.
Not that there’s anything empowering about a violent woman, Naruto is proof of that, I’d say the best females on that show are the less violent ones.
But seriously, the differences between how we think are not that significant. Do more women like to cook and garden then men? I can’t tell you statistically. Do more women care about relationships than men? Probable, but there are thousands of male counselors out there, and men who write books about love. One I read religiously for a while was “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman. Which is one of the most unhelpful books about relationships there is in my collection, but it’s not useless for understanding yourself and others better even so.
Nick trying to understand women by hearing their thoughts isn’t helpful, because even if by some miracle you could understand every women around you, you would understand women in general any better. People cannot be generalization just by the random thoughts in their head. Two thoughts can be in different people’s heads, meaning two different things.
I’m glad I read, or my idea of men would be really skewed. As it is, I’m sure I’ll spend years of dating and marriage realizing how different men can be.
Of course, the ideas I got from books were not always helpful. I remember one in particularly “The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands,” I read it a bunch of times, and this book essentially blamed women for most of the problems in relationships, told them “They have the power” and that their husbands would “walk through fire to get them a quart of cookie dough ice cream.” I found this intriguing, but it didn’t seem to match up with my father. Who once threw a fit about dropping me off at school when it was a 15 minute drive, just because he had finished working already… or was it the bus stop, a 3 minute drive? Doesn’t matter, he would have either way.
My dad never helped me with anything unless it was related to his livelihood, unless we begged him to over and over, and not always then. He is one of the most selfish people I know. But women, of course, are the ones in charge.
That’s all bull hockey, and the author of this book was a woman, to make matters worse, with a talk show. She seemed to be completely unaware that abuse, manipulation, gas-lighting, and toxicity are a thing for men too. A little sex and less nagging aren’t going to fix that.
There are some marriages a little sex and more kindness would probably help, but if it needs to be “Fixed” that’s not going to do it.
To get back to the movie, having all this in the back of my mind, I rather thought the movie did not go far enough.
Some women are not nice. I get that the writers were probably trying to be nice to us, and goodness knows, if the move portrayed our thoughts the way they really are, the feminists would have jumped on it (I suspect they still would anyway)
It’s not a huge complaint, it’s just that he movie could have had more depth if Mel’s character met some nasty women too that he had to deal with, or else just be shocked by. Women are not inherently less selfish or self centered than men are.
And what’s funny is that the behavior Mel exhibits, using women, ignoring their needs, is exactly what I saw from my father, and the women being above that is what I have striven to be, and seen in other women, so why of all things would I complain ti was unrealistic?
Because, I myself have to choose, consciously, not to broad brush men, and not to assume all women will always be nicer.
I’ve been exploited by many men (not sexually, thank goodness, but in other ways) but I’ve been exploited by just as many women. And sometimes with more of a fury. Given the choice being a narcissistic man and a woman, I think the man may be easier to tolerate, if only because they usually walk away from you, while women can try to tear you down. But that’s a generalization, and men do that too. We’re always only going to be talking about what the majority it prone to, but the majority is going to depend a lot on where you live and who you attract.
See, it doesn’t actually make women look good, to make men look bad. If anything, I always end up wondering after watching a movie or reading a book with this slant “geez, why do women even put up with men if this is how they get treated?” And with the book I mentioned before, I wondered what possessed men to marry women who treated them like this. My dad’s ever helpful response? “Sex. Most men wont’ care, as long as she’s attractive.”
Well, I used to believe that. And it may be true, many men don’t care. Those men are idiots. And have low self esteem.
It’s my dream to see men stand up for themselves a little more. I want to be sick when I see men taking womens’ crap by apologizing on behalf of their sex for what some jackasses do. I’m like “dude, if you didn’t do it, don’t even being it up to me. It’s more insulting to me that you feel the need to do that, than that it happens.”
And women who bring up what other men do, to assign blame to perfectly innocent men, disgust me. But I won’t apologize for them to you, and, if a man were to expect me to, I’d put him firmly in his place. But no man has ever been sexist to me, except my own father. So… yeah…
I think the movie actually came to the basic conclusion I have though, that a man will never understand every woman, because women don’t understand themselves, or each other, any more than men do. Men don’t understand themselves or each other either.
And I can understand people better than the average person thanks to my empathic abilities, and I still don’t understand them, really. Even if you know how people basically feel, you won’t know what they will do because of that.
But you don’t need to understand women, totally, to be able to care about them and what they want, and isn’t that the real goal?
Before I get back into this, let’s talk about thew other movie, that’ll round out my point. “
So, “Ocean’s 8” the unspectacular female spin off of the Oceans movies. I don’t have any issue with it in of itself, it was unremarkable, but enjoyable enough if you like heist films, and the actresses were not grating, but should have had more time to act together and be their quirky selves, instead of the 2 dimensional characters they were.
But it occurred to me after watching it, that, there really is nothing at all about it to make it unique. It’s just, 8 women, instead of however many men it happened to be in the other films. Big whoop.
Aside from throwing in some more female stuff like:
dealing with kids
betrayed by your love interest
not having enough female friends
None of these women were especially bad in any other ways other than their particular crimes, which was interesting from a moral standpoint, but rather redundant from a character standpoint.
The movie was relying on star power to make people watch it, which is why I did, but with all that talent, why not do something more creative?
The simple answer is, it’s just another female empowerment movie because a female version of everything has to exist.
No thought it put into what would suit the actresses best, show off their talent the most, and make the most sense for a story centered around them.
And forgive me for saying so but that seems inherently far more sexist than just saying 8 women wouldn’t pull of a heist.
Have 8 women ever pulled off a heist without any men involved except as pawns? Go ahead, look it up, I’d like to know.
Have 8 women every done anything remarkable in history, for that matter, that involved crime?
If it’s happened, it’s not well known enough for a history over like me to have heard of it, and that’s already kind of telling. If there was a true story of this nature, it would have been made into a movie already.
No, even if you make the argument it must have happened at least once in thousands of years, it won’t do much for the movie industry, since they can’t find it.
So, that said…. why limit the characters so much. This is just Hollywood using these talented women to roll in the cash for a “feminist’ movie, and using them to make money instead of to make a good, well balanced movie, is very sexist. As well as giving them no complex thoughts in the movie.
Excuse me if I think a movie about women showing off their talents at hacking, and inventing tools, and scamming people is not exactly making us look deep, or layered. What about philosophy?
Name the last “female empowerment” movie you saw that talked about the philosophy of a women in it? Go ahead, try.
They all have women who tell off men, care a whole lot about promoting women’s rights, and who wear heels…
Yeah, so all powerful women care about is ourselves? Great message, Hollywood.
And it’s completely untrue. Great women, in real life, often have very deep philosophies, wisdom, and practicality. Often our greatest talents is knowing how to get people to do what we want, not whine about it being unfair. Look deep into the life of any capable, impactful woman, see if I’m wrong.
That’s because we’re people. Who, shock! Actually care about others other than ourselves. Imagine that.
(A much better movie is the Harriet one that came out, that hardly anyone seems to have remembered. Based on my own studies, it was quite accurate in many ways, and didn’t lionize Harriet at all. It made her awesome, but still human. Great story.)
Not to mention, you lose the heart of the original.
Do men make movies about other men to exclude women? I know some SJWs actually believe that, they’ve been fed the idea that patriarchal values dictate our society, and all men are actively or subconsciously trying to suppress women.
Geez, the world forbid a man make a movie about things other men and himself are interested in, because he knows thy are, and he wants to make a movie about it without worrying about political savvy.
Some men like including female characters, others don’t. It annoys me when a show lacks female leads, but guess what I do then, I don’t watch it! Why should I?
And why do I need to care? If I can admit that I only want to watch shows that have women in them, regardless of plot, then…well… that’s kind of sexist, isn’t it? At least, it would sound sexist if a man said it right?
See, me enjoying My Little Pony a female dominated show, is fine. But if a man wants to watch an old male dominated show, then he’s a sexist. Id on’t get it. If he wants to watch men, then fine.
Some men like it if ther’es women on the show too, not all of them for reasons I really agree with. Is a sexual deviatn less of a sexist because he watches a show only if it has hot female characters on it?
Really, writers should be allowed to tell the story they want to tell, regardless of whether they sue men or women to tell it. And while I don’t gravitate towards male dominated stories, I do read them. And I enjoy them. Am I going to get mad at J. R. R. Tolkien because there’s only a few women in LOTR? Am I gong to get mad at Charles Dickens because most of his MCs are men, and the girls ones often die off? (So do the boys).
I guess Ic ould, but it kind of misses the pont of the story doesn’ it?
When we make everything about gender, we destroy any deeper meaning, any actual art. And, at times, I am tempted to think that is what they really want.
If the SJWs and media can keep us fighting about stuff that we will never achieve, like gender equality, (it is truly impossible to make men and women equal, biology itself won’t let us dot hat), Then we’ll stop talking about things like love, honor, respect, truth, self sacrifice, courage, persistence, the things we used to make movies about. And male centered stories used to be some of the best about that.
Call me crazy but I really don’t care whether it’s a man or woman telling me, if it’s true. And I don’t intend to go easy on a liar just because they share my gender. If anything, that’s more insulting to me, if it means people will assume I agree with her.
But I’ll wait till doomsday if I wait for the entertainment industry to stop stereotyping, exploiting, and pitting us against each other, so this is not an indictment against Hollywood. I’m not gong to waste my time doing that.
Instead, I appeal to the viewers.
I’m sure most of you don’t like these slants anymore than I do, but it can be hard to explain why. How do you explain this kind of subtle sexism? Especially if it felt unintentional?
I had someone ask me on YouTube, how they could make a male or female character feel male or female. How do they get that real feeling to it.
My advice to them? Don’t try to make them male or female. I don’t believe that gender is unimportant to life, but to writing, it’s a huge mistake to try to write a character to be manly or feminine. Unless you are doing it ironically. You will not be able to avoid making them too superficial.
See, only God has ever been able to nail making male and female things without some impediment to His imagination because of limited experience.
I can’t write men perfectly because I have not met every man int eh world. What is distinctly masculine? I don’t know. It changes every few decades, doesn’t it? Men have an essence, not a singular personality trait, anyone who seriously they do is an idiot.
Women are the same. We have an essence, but not singular characteristic. Is tea drinking and dresses really universally female? No, even looking at different cultures that becomes obvious.
Being a mother is feminine, because a man can’t be a mother. But a man can have motherly traits, if you think that nurturing trait belongs more to mothers than fathers, I really don’t. You see how it works? You have to start with the assumption that something is a masculine or feminine trait before you can say a character is masculine or feminine for having it.
Lifting weights, it’s manly right?
So women never lift weights. And women never should. Or they can, but it will always be more manly than feminine….why? Why does it matter?
And dresses are feminine, so men can not wear robes, though for centuries, they did… and was it feminine then?
Okay, what about traits of personality?
Men are… unemotional, right? So, all the poets, writers, and unstable men of history just weren’t manly… because we all know, women spend more time making poetry, books, and losing their cool than men do…. right?
Women are… petty? Because we all now women spend far more time stabbing each other int the back over nothing, ignoring the bigger picture, and getting revenge than men do. And the ones who didn’t do that… as in most of the respected women of society, were just not feminine…
Yeah, see how stupid it sounds when you really think about it?
What makes someone seem like a woman or man is something impossible to pin point, you will never succeed, the closest anyone has gotten is in pinpoint what we desire, which does seem to be the biggest difference between us.
We all want love, but men and women do tend to want it in different ways. Women tend to want to feel safe and secure with men, men tend to want to feel they can count on women to believe in them. Even that has nuance to it, in some people it is almost unrecognizable, and other authors beside me have described it better.
But my point is, we can’t put each other into these stupid little boxes. If I try to do that to my husband, I am sure it will end terribly, because he can fit into the box my dad gave me. And I can’t fit into a box either.
I like crowns and sparkles, I also like physical combat more than most men I know, and enjoy doing dark emo looks for videos, and most of the time, I really don’t think about what I do being feminine or masculine.
Of course, some standards are good. I’m not against ladylike behavior. I just think it should be part of your character, not dictating what hobbies you have. You can be ladylike punching someone in boxing, and you can be crass while having a tea party. It’s all on the inside.
And man can be gentile whether he’s an accountant or a soldier or a plumber. If it’s a real gentlemen, you really own’t care anymore what he is. Some men render cleaning pipes a noble act, some men render saving your life a disagreeable experience (bad doctors, anyone?) it depends.
So, I guess, my conclusion is, we should be more fair… and we should stop being ashamed of who we are.
This feminist slant has humiliated women as well as men. We should just respect each other, and stop fanning the flames of hatred. As that underrated show “Girl Meets World” tied to demonstrate in the “Girl Meets STEM” episode.
There’s much more to this subject than I can cover in one post, but I hope this was some food for thought.
Until next time, stay honest–Natasha
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