Or else you’re no friend to women in comedy, that is! According to Melissa Silverstein, anyway:
Here is a place where going to a movie has become a political act for women. I feel, as Rebecca Traister wrote on Salon yesterday, that going to see Bridesmaids has taken on special significance for us women especially within the women’s community in Hollywood. These women know what’s at stake…and it’s not just their own personal livelihoods. It’s their future and our future because women in Hollywood are not valued as much as the men. Now we may be focused comedy right now, but there are numerous conversations we can have about the problem Hollywood has with women (check out the statistics) even as women continue to make inroads in all areas.
Here’s the trailer for the movie in question:
On the surface, I get the argument that women need to support other women who are making movies. I get that women are not always taken seriously in Hollywood, that women are rarely nominated for Best Director and only one woman has ever won, that women and girls who act well in movies don’t always get the recognition that they deserve, that women of color (and men of color, for that matter) are usually invisible when it comes time to make Oscar Nominations. I get that the higher-ups at studios don’t believe that women go to movies. I’m a woman living in the U.S., and I watch movies. I know what Hollywood does to us.
However, based on the trailer, I have a different sense of humor than the people who did the writing, and I doubt that I would be entertained if I went. It was also produced by Judd Apatow, who has a history of making movies that aren’t always what I’d call friendly to women, and it was directed by Paul Feig. The writers are both women, and the main characters are all women; it might even pass the Bechdel test. However, it’s about a wedding, which is often Hollywood code for “ladiez only!”. The main characters are cis and white, and the one character who is fat seems to be a caricature, if the trailer is any indication. This movie might have been made by women, but does that mean that I, as a woman, have to settle for it? Does it mean that I have to sit through a movie I’d be bored by, and probably offended by at some points, just to show my solidarity with other (white) women?
I’m not planning to see Bridesmaids, and I resent the insinuation that I am somehow contributing to the demise of comediennes in Hollywood by not going.
[Hat tip to Racialicious.]
[Edited after posting for borked HTML, and because I initially posted the wrong quote.]