Sunday, December 19, 2010

Are We Half Way There Yet?

A few issues here: Yes, a big part of my argument here is against seeking out informed opinion from internet nobodies, and here I am blogging about it. Harr, harr, it fits the modern definition of irony (but frankly, isn't). Also, it may or may not be worth any frustration on my part, but I'll make the noise anyway.

I encourage you to read the following article posted on a really wonderful movie blog I follow:

'First Genuine Female Comedy'

My first problem here is essentially a technical one. This is the future of journalism. While the internet is the most democratic thing to happen to modern man since the printing press, it also waters down the flow of information, there's Roger Ebert, then there's that guy who lived in your dorm and wouldn't shut up about Jim Jarmusch. Now, I've followed /Film for some time, and Sciretta is no hack, but  it's really the principle of the thing. 'Trusted Source' has no meaning left, even outside of the realms of arts and entertainment. All of this is a sort of preamble to my real point, I just wanted to make clear my frustration that I'm not annoyed by a film review, I'm annoyed by dribble masquerading as a film review, but in an arena or day and age where it's likely to be given credence despite being dribble. Am I only perpetuating the cycle? Well, that could be argued, but I think not.
     MY REAL PROBLEM comes from the Idea that the 'First genuine female comedy' was directed and produced by men. Yes, It was written by women, and largely stars women, but in 2010 am I insane to expect a comment like this to be attached to a project top-to-bottom created by women? How many films have made it into our national cannon with a creative team made up entirely of men? This just strikes me as patronizing. "You girls wrote a little film! and you're going to act in! Well,we'll just have Judd and Paul keep an eye on you..."  'A League Of Their Own' was about empowerment, starred Gina Davis and was directed by Penny Marshall. While written by two men, it was adapted from a story by Kim Wilson and Kelly Candaele. Maybe that film was the first "Genuine female comedy"? "Now And Then", while technically a drama I guess, was written, directed and produced by women. Hell, the second unit was directed by a woman and the head carpenter's name was Sara. Guess who just got a lot more respect for producer Demi Moore?
     My best guess is that the distinction lies in subject matter, that the jokes, personalities, and story line are very closely related to being a woman. Having not yet seen 'Bridesmaids" I can't speak to that. We'll try not to get too worked up over the fact that 'The first genuinely female comedy' is about a marriage (why not being named CEO of a Fortune 500?) and cross our fingers that there's a minimum of cattiness. I'm not even getting my hands dirty with that potentiality. But reading the 'reviews' you find that among other things, it's praised for being "Not too girly"....and I just don't even know where to begin with that.
     Again, a big part of my frustration here is my own awareness that I'm getting worked up on the words of strangers, That the person who made these comments doesn't know any better, and the whole thing is basically small potatoes. But as online writing is probably the future of journalism, I imagine we'll only see more of this to come. 
     Beyond the somewhat...scholastic issues, I also want to recognize that women don't need me to fight their battles:

...Yeah, that guy's what the Ghost of Christmas Yet To Come showed me- don't let me stumble in his direction. I recognize that any time a young, white male opens his mouth about any gender/race/sexuality issue, it's a minefield. I'm trying to tread lightly here. Hopefully, none of this will be taken as patronizing.
     I want to ask the question, and it may be answered in the fact that this comment comes from an uninformed source, but: Why is this new movie special?
   And maybe here's the real problem on that technical level: /Film is a pretty well respected Blog, Time magazine named the site "Best Blog" in 2009 (Now that, maybe, is irony). But here they are, publishing Tweets from film goers. That kind of open-sourced 'news' is distressing. I want rigorous checks, I want peer-review. I want Encyclopedia, not Wikipedia.
     I'd also like some genuine progress.

Friday, December 17, 2010

A Short Poem, And I Apologize For My Laziness

One day we'll take a ride in my paper boat
Float down the stream where the otters go
Just me and you together on a sunny day
Laughing, holding hands as we sail away

From the paper deck we can watch the skies
Counting all the clouds as the shapes fly by
In my paper boat we can go anywhere
We'll pack a lunch, a picnic we can share

Me and you sailing down the lazy stream
Maybe things aren't as bad as they can seem
Cause I got my paper boat and I got my girl
Think I'll play a while in the park of the world.