I’ve been trying my best lately to avoid some channels of Social Media, because I don’t have the energy or mental capacity to react to some of the stupid things which make their way on to those forums. I was on Twitter yesterday, riding my Bay ferry to work, when I came across my Cillian Murphy Fan account and a re-tweet from well known womens publication “Marie Claire”.
For those who know me well, I am a feminist. Most likely not one of the more fiercer vocal ones out there, but I strongly believe in fair and equal opportunities for myself, my daughter and all women. As women we’ve come a long way, but after accidentally stumbling across a movie review article plugged by one of Marie Claires “senior journalists”, I feel that some die hard feminists out there are really giving the whole modern day movement a bad name.
See that screen shot? Yes, thats a very one sided and over the top movie review of the recent blockbuster film by Chris Nolan: ‘Dunkirk’. Lets pick apart the wording of such a title and tweet, to see whether we can factor in some common sense when it comes to understand what the hell this woman journo was on about. Maybe she missed her morning latte when she wrote this. Who knows.
Last night my husband and I went to watch Dunkirk. I’d been looking forward to this film for a while. I’d finished watching Band of Brothers a year or 2 before so was excited to see what Nolan had done to reenact this war effort. War movies are my thing. Not because I enjoy bombs being dropped or seeing people being blown up, but more to keep the meaning of life in perspective. The war time strategy of both sides is intriguing. I like to also feel a sense of appreciation for the many who fought to save our freedoms. I felt it necessary not to comment or write this until after I had seen the film.
“An excuse for men to celebrate maleness”. Let’s get some basic facts straight. WW1 and WW2 were at a period in time when females worked in the offices, as nurses, making uniforms, in the kitchens, in warehouses. They supported the effort and the cause back home, while maybe even looking after a family while their husbands, brothers, uncles and grandfathers were out on the front line. They celebrated maleness. You would have to be half blind or stupid to think that being in the front line trenches, while consumed with trench foot, lack of sleep, lack of food/water and thinking you were going to get your head shot off was anything BUT a celebration. Yes. the war scenes depicted in Dunkirk were predominantly ALL male. MEN were on the front lines. Women were not permitted to fight. And like I mentioned, many women (some even pictured IN the film as being on the medic boats and war ships serving food) were there to assist in some capacity.
“Don’t they (men) do that (celebrate) enough already”. It’s 2017. Not 1915 or 1944. I don’t see the making of one film in 2017 which was entirely based on real life true events to be elevating the MRA movement. The article in itself goes into more detail and reading it either made me feel more stupid or perplexed at what the true intention of this writer actually was. Burning all men at the stake? Are men all of a sudden not allowed to have any bonding moments, or film highlights?
Above is an excerpt of the article. Is War something men “Man out over?” What are women expected to feel? Was this clickbait? (Most likely) But for someone who is the “senior film journalist” for a large publication, her article did not mention things like: screenplay, the movie score (which Chris Nolan is well known for adding the elevated sensory suspense through intense orchestral scores) the actors, the casting (oh sorry, she did mention that…then went on to berate Harry Styles saying he would bring the viewer back down to earth).
And look, this journalist didn’t have to like the movie. That’s fine. But she focussed her entire review on her feminist agenda and not for any qualities of the actual film itself: the screenplay, music, plot…nada. What did I take from the film as a feminist? That war is an ugly event which brings out the brave in all, in men, in women, in the young, that it was a large unnecessary loss of life. I’m thankful we have directors such as Nolan who can help visualise these historical events so that our children and their children can understand the struggles our ancestors faced at different times in history and how they over came them.
My parting note: don’t read Marie Claire. Go to Rotten Tomatoes, IMDb and Metacritic. Avoid shitty journalism. You’re sure to get a straight up front review without the unnecessary drama.