In the UK, kids have Skins parties (or, at least, they once did — the show was recently canceled after a precipitous ratings drop). That makes sense; Skins is generally a great show, full of the kind of teenage debauchery you might want to imitate. But we’re finding it a little more difficult to defend… Read More
1. Can you remember the last time that Woody Allen appeared in a movie that wasn’t his own? It’s been over a decade now. That’s why we’re excited to hear that he’ll join John Turturro in Fading Gigolo, an indie comedy which Turturro is writing and directing; they’ll play “cash-strapped best friends who decide to… Read More
Over the course of the past few days, I’ve found myself reading a quite a bit of hand-wringing, and even engaging in a few spirited Twitter conversations, with regards to the number two movie of the weekend, Project X — specifically, the picture’s attitude toward women (towards anyone who’s not a young white male, really). If there’s a buzzword for the Project X’s opening weekend, it’s misogyny. “Project X is the male gaze substantiated and concentrated into ninety sweaty minutes,” writes Badass Digest’s Meredith Borders. “The way these guys talk about the girls, the way they look at them, the way Dax’s camera presents them, validates every misogynistic tendency a high school boy may be capable of feeling. Project X celebrates and rewards that misogyny.” The L Magazine calls it “a misogynist fantasy of high school wildness,” while View London says it’s “ultimately let down by some appalling misogyny and a deeply unlikable central character.” The reviews that don’t explicitly drop the “m-word” at least echo these sentiments (The best one-liner comes via the AV Club’s Keith Phipps: “It would be easy to say Project X objectifies women, if the word ‘object’ didn’t imply too much dignity”).
For the most part, your author agrees with these criticisms, for reasons I’ll expand on presently. What’s curious, though, is how thinking through my feelings on this film and these ideas have led me to second-guess some ideas I’ve had about teens and pop culture and “responsibility” for decades, and that’s where I’m curious to know what you think. … Read More