Something Borrowed

This trailer keeps popping up when I’m trying to enjoy myself by watching anything else, so I figure it’s time to fight back. Now, this is based solely on the trailer; I haven’t read the book, and I’ll probably never watch the movie. If you feel like wasting the next two minutes and thirty three seconds of your life, watch it yourself:

So many issues. I’ll try to itemize.

1. The Plot: The story that I see is clearly not the story I am supposed to be seeing. Apparently the blonde friend is the villain, ruthlessly ‘stealing’ the protagonist’s love interest, though as far as I can tell her only crime is being assertive, and I guess in expecting her maid of honor to help her with wedding things. The protagonist I assume is who we’re supposed to be sympathizing and identifying with, but when somebody basically refuses to be handed exactly what she wants on a platter, I stop caring forever. Honestly, I have so little patience for people who fold on everything, especially before there is any opposition. Her problems are entirely 100% her fault. Why should I empathize?

The next part I’m supposed to be seeing is someone finally learning to stand up for herself, but all I see is someone ruining her ‘best friend”s wedding at the worst possible moment short of sleeping with the groom during the actual ceremony. I guess if you are a terrible person and you want to stop being a terrible person and you’re in love with your best friend’s fiancee you should speak up before the wedding instead of keeping your meek little mouth shut for another five years of silent resentment, cumulating in an expensive and stressful divorce. You should also speak up before having sex with the guy, but maybe I’m old fashioned like that.

2. The Female Friendship: I am so sick of this. I’ll level with you, I don’t consume ‘chick’ media very frequently, so maybe my sample size is just too small (and skewed by Bride Wars), but it seems like the female friendships in all these things have the tiny problem of being completely awful. Like, just completely irredemable, with absolutely no basis in support or goodwill whatsoever. They are just selfish people screwing eachother over for petty non-reasons. And there is always lip-service to Sisterhood, but there is never any support for it in the text. The real moral is that women can NEVER trust other women, especially if there are any men around. Why do women tell eachother these stories over and over again?

And the really annoying thing is, it’s so wildly different from the ‘chick’ stuff targeted to kids and pre-teens. Those friendships were ALWAYS selfless and supportive. Sure, there was conflict, but you always knew at the heart of it these were great friendships. As I’ve grown up, the women in media targeted at me have devolved before my eyes, and now they all have the emotional maturity of sixth graders. What gives?

3. The Fellow: Why are men always objects in these things, without any agency whatsoever? The whole boy-stealing myth supposes that men have absolutely nothing to do with what woman they end up with, and it’s ludicrious. I suppose it’s just easier to just think of men as prizes; that way we won’t have to hold them responsible when they do things like cheat on their fucking fiancee.

4. The Message: I suppose I’ve already covered these, but to summarize the moral of the movie seems to be some combination of:
1. Women who go after what they want and “always win” are evil.
2. Female friendships are worthless when compared to True Love.
3. Men really want totally passive women, but those pesky assertive women tend to snatch them up first and men are usually helpless against them.
4. After you turn 30, a man is the Ultimate Prize. Even if he is the kind of putz who sleeps with his fiancee’s maid-of-honor, he is still incredibly desirable and you are depreciating in value FAST, so act quick.

On a related note, when are we going to get sick of this stupid Bridezilla thing? It is wholly incorrect and awful. It demeans women in pretty obvious ways, but more insidiously it sends the message that women are (and should be) more concerned about getting married than about who they are marrying.

So, out of fifty points:
Plot: 0
Female Frienships: -3
The Man: 0
The Message: 0
John Krasinski: 7 (3 for his doofus face, 4 for the hoodie)

Total: 4/50

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “Something Borrowed

  1. Wow, I can’t believe this is real! It seems like a parody of the worst things about romantic comedies.

    I don’t understand why this is ostensibly a story about the personhood of the brown-haired girl. Sort of seems like the Tom Cruise faced guy is the only one with any meaningful choices or agency.

    Oh right… I forgot… women don’t get those things.

    • Alison

      I know, right? This is the weird dissonance I’m talking about. In the story they think they’re telling, it is all about One Woman’s Choice or something, to the point where the guy has no input in who he is dating at any given time, but the facts of the situation paint the opposite story! It is baffling.

  2. The whole boy-stealing myth supposes that men have absolutely nothing to do with what woman they end up with, and it’s ludicrious.
    YES. THIS DRIVES ME INSANE. And not just in films, but irl, too. I’m always hearing how some women “stole” a man and how “men can’t help it” and it’s just so demeaning to both men and women.

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