Monday, March 8, 2010

In which I pretend that the Oscars are actually relevant to anything

Kathryn Bigelow just won the Best Director Oscar for The Hurt Locker, making her the first woman ever to do so. I hate Kathryn Bigelow: Strange Days is one of the worst movies I've ever seen, and Near Dark ain't much better. I haven't seen The Hurt Locker, but it seems to be one of those Platoon-style "makes you feel what it's like to be there" war movies that are so good at making Americans feel better about their imperial adventures by feeling guilty about them, so, yeah, no thanks.

Looking at the credits, I see that there is one high-billed woman in the movie, Evangeline Lilly, who is quite famous indeed but who is still only billed seventh, after six men. Other than her, the women in the movie are Nibras Quassem, who is credited empoweringly as "Nabil's Wife", and Kate Mines, who is actually uncredited but whom imdb lists as "Soldier." Like I said, I haven't seen the movie, but what do you want to bet it doesn't come close to passing the Bechdel test?

What a victory! I think it's safe to say that we are now living in a truly post-feminist society.


Anonymous said...

after reading the review in the NYTimes, i had a similar reaction (not about the issue of portrayal of women, i completely glossed over that one). the review heaped praise upon the movie for various reasons, but esp. for its refusal to take a political stance on the iraq war. why is that praiseworthy? and how is the movie then not anything but war propaganda?

that said, platoon is vastly overrated, but i don't think its purpose or effect is to make americans feel better about their imperial adventures....

Richard said...

I've been highly skeptical about The Hurt Locker, so I still haven't seen it, but I will admit I thought Strange Days was fascinating. I didn't realize till this morning that it was by Bigelow. You might be interested in checking out this defense of her, from someone very much on the left: