American Beauty

Why MRAs Love ‘To Kill a Mockingbird': Jeff Sharlet on Covering the Men’s Rights Movement

When men’s rights activists (or MRAs, as they are known online) held their first conference in Detroit last summer, it was an opportunity for the mainstream media to examine why a group of disenfranchised men are blaming their problems on feminism and not, as writer Jeff Sharlet puts it, “late-stage American capitalism.” Sharlet wrote about the conference in a March 2015 GQ article titled, “Are You Man Enough For the Men’s Rights Movement?” It’s the latest in a series of articles coming out of the event, from Mariah Blake’s Mother Jones profile of Warren Farrell to BuzzFeed’s look at Paul Elam, the leader of the movement’s most popular website. … Read More

  • 0

The Most Embarrassing Movies We Saw With Our Moms

In honor of Mother’s Day this weekend, the Flavorwire staff is looking back on some of the more uncomfortable moments we had with our moms. Whether they refused to go shopping after buying us the tickets to the R-rated movies we desperately wanted to see, or they felt they were progressive enough to expose us to enlightening subject matter as long as they guided us along themselves, some of our moms willingly shared incredibly unsettling cinematic moments with us. Come along as we take a trip down memory lane and dig up the movies we wish we hadn’t sat through with our mothers. … Read More

  • 0

On Ferris Bueller, Advertising, and the Fourth Wall

The good news, I suppose, is that he’s not actually playing Ferris Bueller. Still, there’s no question that the two-and-a-half minute Matthew Broderick-fronted, Todd Phillips-directed Honda CR-V Super Bowl ad that we told you about last week is positively loaded with Ferris Bueller’s Day Off references and iconography — more than two dozen of them, according to Honda’s “brand manager” (ugh), Tom Peyton. The ad went online Monday, with the predictable response pattern: snarky rage on Twitter, hand-wringing online, and then the required contrarian “In Defense of…” piece. It’s shaping up to be the big game’s most controversial ad (at least until Sunday, when we get the full-frontal assault of “women are nags” spots, but I digress).

So why do we care so much? It’s no longer a surprise to see pop culture icons shilling for big business; hell, I’m old enough to remember the giant controversy that followed the licensing of a Beatles song for Nike ad. (That uproar seems positively quaint these days, when a commercial deal is a giant coup for musicians of all stripes.) The commotion over Broderick’s Honda ad speaks not to “selling out” in general. It’s about the selling out of this character — and not just because he didn’t condone any “–isms” (including, presumably, capitalism). It’s about our connection with Ferris Bueller, who wasn’t just a protagonist. By taking us into his confidence and guiding us through his world, Bueller made us his co-conspirator. … Read More

  • 19

Exclusive: Read Sam Mendes’ Apple iPhone Ad Script

Yes, film buffs and Apple worshipers, what you hear is true. Sam Mendes, the man who brought us American Beauty and Revolutionary Road, has been tapped to direct an iPhone ad. The folks at Engadget have certainly done their homework, reporting that “the ads will feature at least one spot where a mother and daughter are having a video chat conversation using the new front-facing camera.” We can confirm that this is true… because we’ve nabbed a copy of Mendes’ shooting script for the commercial.* Read it here first, after the jump. … Read More

  • 7