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Wow, if that title isn’t thinly disguised click bait than I don’t know what is.
Anyway, first some good news. A new image of the Jurassic World Mosasaur has been released online, and boy is it awesome.
I totally want this poster hanging up on my wall. I don’t care if the movie ends up sucking.
A few other images have surfaced recently, with my favorite of them being this.
I’m not sure if this is an actual screenshot from the film or a rendered scene illustrated for marketing, but I’m going to place my bets on the latter. Still, it’s an awesome image, and I’m glad to finally get a good look at Triceratops here.
It has been speculated online that a new full length trailer is on its way and will soon be making it’s rounds on the interwebs. As of yet this isn’t the case, but we do have this little clip (shown during the MTV Movie Awards) here to hold us over until then.
As a first look, it’s alright. It sheds a bit more light on the personalities of these characters, as well as hinting toward the kind of relationship these two characters have. It’s a tad bit silly for my tastes, but overall I think it’s OK.
I didn’t really plan to talk about the clip since I didn’t feel I had much to say about it (not to mention the distinct lack of dinosaurs). But then, something interesting happened, and I felt the urge to put forth my two cents on the matter.
Unanimously Elected All Powerful Cult Leader of the Nerds Sir Joss Whedon (his unofficial yet appropriate title), director of the upcoming blockbuster film Avengers Age of Ultron (or as I like to call: the Unanimously Elected All Powerful Cult Movie of the Nerds) tweeted about his opinion of the clip. In it, he labeled the scene as ’70’s level sexism’.
Now, Joss is well known for writing casts with many well realized and active female characters, and he is an outspoken advocate for better representation of women in Hollywood media. A noble cause if I do say so myself. And I can totally understand why he would come to that conclusion. Several moments in the clip made me a tad bit uncomfortable as well, not the least of which being the sly sexual comments Owen makes towards Claire. And yes, the outspoken man and the stick-in-the-mud woman are common gender stereotypes that do have their share of unfortunate implications.
But to completely call out a movie as ’70’s level sexist’ based on a single clip alone? Really Joss?
Joss has since apologized for the statement, saying that it wasn’t appropriate to vent out his concerns in the way that he did. But he didn’t really apologize for what he said, he apologized more for how he said it. his feelings on the matter are still the same, which I understand. I just hope this wasn’t done because there were too many blockbuster roosters in the summer movie season hen-house and someone decided to get cocky.
Now I guess this leads to the inevitable question: is this clip sexist? And my answer?
But mostly yes.
And mostly no.
Let me explain.
Does this clip depict common gender roles depicted in films?
Are the sexual comments made by Chris Pratt’s character somewhat creepy and come off as slightly dominating?
Taken at face value, this clip does raise an eyebrow. But we are forgetting a very important aspect of this whole situation:
We don’t have any context for this scene. We don’t have the rest of the movie, we don’t have the set up. All we have is a random moment from the film presented to us, and that’s it. It’s not a lot to work with really.
First impression from the clip is that Claire is a no nonsense pencil pusher passive woman role that we’ve seen a hundred times in movies like this. And at this point in the movie, she probably is just that. But the criticism against this scene seems to forget a little thing called character development, and that characters can change into better characters as the movie progresses. She may be passive now, but who knows what she will be pushed to by the end of the film. It has been confirmed by the director that Claire will take on an ‘Ellen Ripley’ role in the film when she becomes determined to protect her nephews when the park goes to hell. Now, I don’t know about you, but Ellen Ripley was no push over.
As the film progresses, I can see Claire evolving from passive and stern to an active decision maker by the movie’s climax, making the character a lot more involved than first impressions would have you believe. And you know what, that is a good character arch, and character arches are always welcomed in my book.
I’m going to hold my judgement on these characters until I see the actual movie, and I would never label something so extreme when I’ve only seen a small snipet of the product. I don’t fault Joss for what he said, for he certainly had some merit. I just don’t want the topic of feminism cheapened by fiascoes like this, especially from a man who is usually so good with this topic. Feminism recently has been given a bad reputation thanks to crazy extremists online who are growing in number at a disturbing rate. It kind of makes you forget that equal representation of woman is an important thing to strive for, and that topics like this shouldn’t be made trivial. Still, prematurely judging things isn’t the right way to go about it, and sadly it makes the argument seem even less valid.
So, I guess my argument can be boiled down to this:
Please don’t judge things before you get the whole picture, and just try and treat everyone like thinking human beings.