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posted by [personal profile] exsequar at 08:27pm on 17/04/2009 under , ,
I was somehow unaware of this discussion currently going on, but [livejournal.com profile] esorlehcar linked the following post and I think you all need to read it:

Observe & Report: On Real Rape

Apparently (and these things still manage to shock me) this movie (Observe & Report, Jody Hill's new movie starring Seth Rogan and Anna Faris) contains a scene in which Rogan's character has sex with Faris's while she is drugged out of her mind and unconscious. It is supposed to be funny. She wakes up for a bleary moment and tells him not to stop - so he doesn't. This is the punchline.

Actual tears of rage.

That post is so much more eloquent than I could ever be, but suffice to say that it's really hard not to completely despair in the face of attitudes like these. To know that many guys (and maybe even girls!) I know or at least am acquainted with will go see this movie and laugh at this scene makes my stomach twist painfully. And the fact that Jody Hill lifts this scene up as something "edgy" and "hilarious" is just as painful. It's not even the product of some studio pushing for it, or something ignorant - it is a willful act of subjugating the right of a woman to her own body for the purposes of humor and entertainment.

I am so, so angry. And sad.
Mood:: 'angry' angry
There are 9 comments on this entry. (Reply.)
posted by [identity profile] jamesinclair.livejournal.com at 07:23am on 18/04/2009
You havent seen the movie. The person whos blog you linked to apparently hasnt seen the movie. I'm not saying either of you are wrong, but perhaps youre not seeing the whole point?

I havent seen the movie either, but Im looking at some reviews and they say "Dark, disturbing, and a bit discomforting. Not a feel good movie." and "Though it has a mean streak, and does not cater to all tastes, Observe and Report has gut-busting laughs and a fully committed Seth Rogen in irresistible form."

I guess the scene isnt supposed to be just a gag and then moving on, but something more than that? It's supposed to be shocking, and maybe the movie people want to contrast that with the comedy elsewhere. Or maybe they think its funny to shock people. Or maybe they do think the scene itself is funny.

Its hard to say without seeing the entire movie I think. Anna Faris was clearly alright with it anyway.

posted by [identity profile] jamesinclair.livejournal.com at 07:26am on 18/04/2009
Why cant I edit? Anyway, apparently the movie is similar to Burn After Reading, which is, a comedy with a dark side. Is murder supposed to be funny? Of course not. Then why is it sometimes? I guess the same with the scene in this movie.
posted by [identity profile] exsequar.livejournal.com at 11:08am on 18/04/2009
The writer said: "I would have been happy without any dialogue in that scene. I wanted to show them just having sex and her passed out, and I thought that would have been funnier."

I think that's pretty unambiguous. He was making a joke out of a man having sex with an unconscious woman.

Also, the fact that Anna Faris was part of it does not mean she's okay with it. Maybe she's unaware of the implications - the story the blogger tells about her friend who was taken advantage of in this way and didn't know it was rape is far too accurate of how many women view rape and sex. They're so resistant to calling it rape. Also, the amount of agency Anna would have in a Hollywood movie is obviously tiny. Either she just isn't aware of the horror in the scene or she's afraid to speak out, both of which are sadly far too likely.

I have to say I'm discomforted by you trying to come up with excuses for it. Did you read the whole post?
posted by [identity profile] jamesinclair.livejournal.com at 10:36pm on 18/04/2009
Im not trying to come up with excuses. I'm just saying that this isn't a superbad kind of movie, it's supposed to be very different. Even if the intent was to make a rape joke, I don't see the problem if it's the same type of movie that would make a murder joke, which based on reviews, also happens.
posted by [identity profile] exsequar.livejournal.com at 11:15pm on 18/04/2009
The difference between murder and rape is that everyone knows murder is wrong. There's no ifs ands or buts about it - murder is wrong, and everyone knows it, so that's built into any comedy about it. Rape, on the other hand, is an extremely sensitive cultural issue - women don't report rapes because no one believes them, women have to pay for the rape kits performed on them at the hospital, women who get pregnant from rape are told to keep the baby, women are blamed for situations in which they were clearly the victim just because they were wearing clothes that meant they were "asking for it," or something equally horrible. It's an issue that has traumatized many many women, and this situation is not even a comedic rape - it is straight out rape, and the audience is asked to laugh at it. To laugh at the simple act of fucking a woman when she is incapable of consent (conscious or not, the simple fact of her intoxication renders consent impossible). The parallel is completely invalid, as far as I'm concerned.
posted by [identity profile] jamesinclair.livejournal.com at 07:40pm on 19/04/2009
Your point about murder humor and rape humor makes sense. However, I still think you should see the movie before forming an angry opinion on it. You may be completely right, but its impossible to know without the context.
posted by [identity profile] exsequar.livejournal.com at 09:30pm on 19/04/2009
I will never spend any money or time on this movie, because the facts are incontrovertible. There is a scene in which a fully conscious man has sex with a woman who is high/drunk beyond belief. There is no question about whether or not that is wrong - it. is. wrong. And the director's statement about the humor of it only seals the deal. Maybe I'll watch 5 seconds of it when it shows up on youtube, just to confirm my opinion, but I don't feel it is necessary in the slightest.

Maybe I'm a stubborn bitch, but Jody Hill can go fuck himself with a rusty rake.
posted by [identity profile] jamesinclair.livejournal.com at 10:29pm on 19/04/2009
Not wanting to spend money on it is understandable. But watch it online, and not just that scene. You cant get a feel for what kind of movie and humor it is without the whole thing.

Knocked up had a scene in which the woman is drunk (and so is the man) resulting in a baby. That's a very different kind of humor than this one.

None of the reviews I read even make reference to the scene, so it must not be remarkable in comparison.
posted by [identity profile] hopelessfangirl.livejournal.com at 08:10pm on 18/04/2009
I only vaguely heard about this somewhere and hadn't read such an in-depth discussion about the scene till now.

This is exactly what disheartens me about the typical "comedy" movie these days. I'm a huge comedy fan; I have just about all of the collections of old SNL alumni "Best Of" DVDs, classic comedies like Airplane and more recent ones like Wayne's World and the Adam Sandler movies from the 90s, even some George Carlin stand-up, stuff like that. So you know I'm honest when I say that comedy is a huge part of my life, and also my personality, because I often gauge how much people like me by whether or not they laugh at my jokes. I love good comedy, and while people in general tend to see most comedians as fools, I have the utmost respect for the people that are able to do it well.

That said, this is not comedy. Too many so-called "comedies" these days are catered to idiots with no morals. It's all about either the shock factor or the disgusting factor. There is no wit or heart anymore. In fact, I just finished watching Tommy Boy (1995 movie with Chris Farley and David Spade), and even though it certainly has its share of silliness and things for frat boys to laugh at, the reason I love it so much is that it a) actually has a plot; b) has heart and c) is not offensive. I'm trying to wrack my brains and I honestly cannot think of a single offensive scene in the movie, and yet it still manages to be hilarious. Now, they say that the best comedy is often the most offensive, and while I agree with that to a degree (some stereotype jokes can be funny, and Lord knows cussing makes me LOL), there is still a line that shouldn't be crossed. When I compare the overall feel of Tommy Boy to what the producers of Observe & Report seem to be trying to convey, I can really tell that they're crossing that line from being funny to just being downright disgusting. I just don't find crude and morally ambiguous things like that to be funny at all, and I don't like to associate with people who do.


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