Posts Tagged ‘stereotypes’

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This small film is a mixed bag, with some countercultural observations of high school and cliques, a la Heathers, but also with a slight MOW tameness to it.  And it features Kristen Stewart, pre-Twilight.  The pace starts slow, with some, what I would call, missed opportunities in the screenwriting and editing.

Based on the novel of the same name, I must have misread a description because I thought it was completely different, and similar to a project that I’m currently working on.  It isn’t.

So, Kristen Stewart becomes the school pariah, cast out of everything and having to endure various types of abuse.  Withdrawn, she has nowhere to turn, as long as she refuses to speak about what happened to her.

The film explores what speaking out entails, and what failure to speak also entails.  Sometimes both choices are bad but failing to speak is worse, as the unintended consequences of failing to make your case can mount.

It’s a YA story that isn’t juvenile and doesn’t pander.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLermZxL1wc

 

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After an uncharacteristically swift (and passionate) response to the bad Lone Ranger reviews I posted here yesterday, I figured I’d look a little more into this masked man and his crow-accessorized companion.

Some critics are calling it genuinely subversive, misunderstood and other sorts of praises.

Luke Thompson:

“This will not likely come as a shock to anyone, but lest there was any doubt, yes, it adds fantasy elements and makes many of the major characters insane, while not being remotely accurate to real history. What may surprise you is that there is a legitimate in-story reason for this, one that also accounts for its mood-swings, tonal shifts, and occasional plot holes that the story quite deliberately calls your attention to.”

More:

The Lone Ranger’s Lonely Defenders: Critics Ride to the Maligned Blockbuster’s Rescue

With  the Tomatometer in freefall at 23% and with audiences at 68%, quite the split, we have something to think about here.

I’m inclined to listen to what Native Americans think of it before taking the word of middle aged white guys.

Native Appropriations:

“It’s 2.5 hours of a film with an identity crisis, not knowing if it’s supposed to be funny, campy, dramatic, “authentic,” or what. At points it was very hard to separate the stereotypical and hurtful from the bad script, bad editing, and bad character development of the movie itself.”

Apparently its defenders are pulling a Pee Wee Herman:

“I meant to do that!”pee-wee-herman-20090810-174119

spoilers

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The darling of predominantly white middle class festival audiences, Beasts of the Southern Wild, has not met with universal adoration. I haven’t seen the film, but a scathing review at New Black Man in Exile: No Love in the Wild, by Bell Hooks (long).

At the center of this spectacle is the continuous physical and emotional violation of the body and being of a small six year old black girl called Hushpuppy (played by the ten year old actress Quzenhane Wallis). While she is portrayed as continuously resisting and refusing to be a victim, she is victimized. Subject to both romanticization as a modern primitive and eroticization, her plight is presented as comically farcical…

It is a major mystery that moviegoers adore this film and find it deeply moving and entertaining. Amid many real life tragedies of adult violation of children (i.e. Penn State,) violations that subject small children to verbal abuse, physical and psychological violence’ sexual assault, it is truly a surreal imagination that can look past the traumatic abuse Hushpuppy endures and be mesmerized and entertained by Beasts of the Southern Wild.

Ultimately this film expresses a conservative agenda… But there is nothing radical about the age-old politics of domination the movie espouses – insisting that only the strong survive, that disease weeds out the weak (i.e. the slaughter of Native Americans,) that nature chooses excluding and including.

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