Every. WORD. Of this. Article. Poetic, yet tightly written. And, most importantly, spot-on and full of truth to power.
It’s going to be a tough paradigm to change, this overabundance of white male representation (and gaze). EVERYONE likes representation of themselves and of people similar to them, including and ESPECIALLY white men. They — and to a historically lesser, but now growing extent, white women — have had a stranglehold on Hollywood’s representation-goals since its inception and won’t easily suffer the representation or gaze of Others. As we’ve seen, they’ll co-opt stories brazenly and without guilt or shame or desire to understand.
(Julia Roberts considered to play Harriet Tubman, remember? I’d put cash-money on the brain-trust championing that being a white, cis male. But what I WON’T do is tokenly hashtag “not-all-white-artists,” as some talisman against idiotic whingeing. ANYONE possessing the ability to read a Medium article should know better than to use THAT tired strawman to deflect and divert from any issue.)
If one is used to having one hundred percent of ALL THE PIES, then being cut back to even ninety-eight percent of all the pies feels like highway robbery, I suppose. That’s the underpinning of privilege and supremacy: ALL THE STORIES have to be about oneself because one refuses to make stories about anything else. And refuses to let anyone else make stories about anything else, then take those persons and stories seriously on their own artistic merits.
This sense of supremacy, wrapped in all that privilege, is endemic — an identity unto itself. It’s a cyclops. It staggers around, more than half-blind, destroying everything in its path. It doesn’t have to be precise or take aim to destroy, because it’s such a destructive leviathan, that its very existence — characterized by blindness, enormity, and unearned power— means that anything upon which it casts a shadow will be pulverized.
And like the cyclops from myth, this one sitting on its Tinsel-Town throne, isn’t going to give up even one iota of its representation (which might actually be down to ninety-six percent, by now). It gave out its sops to the women and colored folks and those of alternative lifestyles. Now, it’s time to return to “serious” movie-making and representation in the arts. And that perspective and gaze has always meant “white and male.”
Eventually, though, the cyclops is always brought down. Either by the perseverance of those living in the dark and danger of its shadow, or by its own hubris, greed, and ignorance. It’s own blindness.
Dead heat-race as to which takes down this iteration. My money’s on a little bit of both. And I hope I’m still alive to see the movies that are made about THAT. . . .
But not if they’re made by Todd Phillips. Or Tarantino. Or whoever-the-hell that bland-looking, self-wank marriage film is by. They and their film-making can miss me for keeps.
THANK YOU for this article. Here’s to a BILLION more spot-on and powerful truths!