Who is going to represent the downtrodden white male in cinema? Who will tell their story?
First the good news.
Todd Brown from the must read movie news site Twitch took a look at the multitude of horror anthology films springing up and asked “Hey, why aren’t more lady filmmakers asked to contribute?” Rather than just write a strongly worded editorial asking this question, Todd launched the forthcoming anthology film XX. Not only that, he assembled a kick ass band of women to work on the film including The Soska Twins (American Mary), Jennifer Lynch (Chained), Mary Harron (American -fucking- Psycho), Karyn Kusama (Jennifer’s Body) and Jovanka Vuckovic (The Guest).
I’m loathe to use the phrase “passing the baton” here because it suggests that talent like Ms. Harron are giving way to a younger generation that includes the Soskas and Vuckovic. Perhaps a better term would be welcoming the newer filmmakers to the club.
Anyhow, this film is a welcome development in a genre that increasingly feels like a singular voice-quarter life crisis white guys-are the only ones getting a shot at having their visions play out on screen.
That’s the good news.
The bad news is if you read the comment section of many sites reporting this news, you’ll want to take your face and smash it repeatedly against a brick wall as a reminder that reading the comment section of most news sites is one of the last bastions of contrived outrage for backwards thinking neanderthals that think being white and male is akin to putting a bullseye on one’s chest and asking for oppression from those pesky “special interest groups”.
Some of the comments roll up in the Trojan horse masked as a seemingly innocuous question such as “Why does the gender of the filmmaker matter? Why can’t we just celebrate the best films rather than have gender enter the equation?
Which, if we lived in a vacuum where opportunities presented themselves in equal fashion with race, gender and class having no impact, then this would be a perfectly reasonable inquiry. However to pretend otherwise is to simply bury one’s head in the sand and refuse to acknowledge that the deck is stacked in favor of a select handful of people at the expense of a great many others. To dig in one’s heels and make shameful and ignorant comments such as:
Men are biologically more ambitious and thus more likely to aggressively pursue careers in dangerous, demanding, or cut-throat industries. It may not be PC to say that but it’s what the science tells us. The film industry is very competitive and cut-throat.
At least when they inevitably get lost driving somewhere they won’t be able to blame their husbands.
If they really want to make this a kind of feminist circle jerk, shouldn’t Streisand direct a segment? With Jane Fonda acting? The can roast their victims over a pyre of burning bras while reading Ms. magazine.
and this DELIGHTFUL and well thought out exchange between surely two leading members of the MENSA society:
Ronnie James Dio Fistacuffs Damn straight. Imagine all white male directors. Meltdown
The examples above are some of the nicer, calmer more rational ones you’ll find before said commentators melted down as their straw man arguments came crashing around their ankles. Of course,
If you ever wanted the argument made that as a species, we’re better of smothering our young with pillows and allowing nature to let us go instinct, just spend fifteen minutes reading the “Talkback” section of Ain’t It Cool News.