Twisty Faster has an absolutely spot-on analysis of the problem with boys making movies for boys–a.k.a. modern Hollywood and the crapola movies it makes (h/t to commenter MsMcD.) It’s hard for me to excerpt without giving away her punchline, but it involves her listening to a recent interview with (in her words) “two Hollywood dudes who had something to do with making ‘Toy Story 3.’ The Hollywood dudes start[ed] talking about ‘getting to the emotional truth of the characters.’ I have, with my usual painstaking attention to detail, transcribed the portion of the interview in which they reveal how they went about getting to the “emotional truth” of a Ken doll character:”
Hollywood Dude #1: I don’t know if you had any Ken dolls when you were growing up; I certainly didn’t. But my friends’ little sisters did and we made endless fun of Ken. Ken’s just a-a-a whipping boy […] We thought, well what does it feel like to be a guy who’s a girl’s toy? You’re a guy, but you’re only played with by little girls. And then further, he’s just an accessory to Barbie. You know he doesn’t carry equal weight to, with Barbie, he’s really no more important than a pair of shoes or a belt or a purse to her, and we knew that he would have to have a complex.
A-HAHAhahaha!!! Now that’s a “world upside down” moment: men as accessories to women, or even as toys for them! Little girls as the Untouchables of the playground! Yet another movie that’s all about exploring men’s subjectivity and men’s emotions!!! Well, you know what Twisty will do with that, but to quote the brilliant entirety of her post would be plagiarism, and this is a respectable ranch so we can’t do that here. Please, for the love of Dog, click here and read.
Aside: if you’re looking for a good movie that will entertain everyone from 7 to 70 (and beyond) that turns on a female human (and a male horse), you can’t do better than Secretariat. I was charmed by the telling of the famous (forgive the term) Cinderella story as well as by the film’s focus on the determination of Secretariat’s owner Penny Chenery Tweedy and her midlife transformation from Denver housewife to legend of modern sports history. Diane Lane is charming and convincing as Tweedy (and wears the period clothes very well), and John Malkovitch is hilarious as the trainer she hires for the horse. (The movie is marred by Malkovitch’s attempts to speak French and mime a French Canadian accent–the “Foghorn Leghorn” problem of fake-o Hollywood accents.) A significant sub-plot involves the inconvenience to Tweedy’s family as she takes a major role in running her parents’ stables and in preparing Secretariat for his Triple Crown victory, but it’s lovely in the end how her husband and her children come to appreciate and respect her in a new way because she has the courage of her convictions and develops a life outside of them.
And of course, little girls love horses, don’t they?