film

“Magic Mike”: The Bible for Masc Bros

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magic-mikeListen up, bros! Grab your red solo cups, your ex-girlfriend’s ex-boyfriend’s hockey jerseys, and your beer funnels: I’m here to tell you it’s okay to like Magic Mike. It is totally okay to appreciate another bro’s body. As a matter of fact, I do it all the time. In the shower, at the gym, at the gas station bathroom, it is totally okay to be bro-appreciative of another bro’s body. And I think Steven Soderbergh’s Magic Mike celebrates that masc ideal. Read the rest of this entry »

A Little Post About Wes Craven, the Monster Who Made Me Write

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la-me-ln-wes-craven-dies-at-76-20150830I’ve never written an obituary or anything of that sort before, not at any meaningful length or for anyone of significance, unless you count the essay I wrote about my father a couple years after his death. The best obituaries are those that aren’t narcissistic, but are able to encapsulate the stature of that person in the context of both the individual writer’s life and in a much broader sense. So, I’ll see what I can do, walk that tightrope. Read the rest of this entry »

When You Are Engulfed in Flames: What’s Left of “Paris is Burning”’s Legacy

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Paris is BurningOnce every season, RuPaul gathers her remaining gurls, brings them to the front of the “Werk Room”, gives them fake frames to hold over their faces like a monocle, and announces elegantly, “In the grand tradition of Paris is Burning, the library is now open.” The queens, on RuPaul’s Drag Race, proceed to read – make snarky insults at one another, kind of like a roast – the rest of the queens, and whomever makes the cleverest and wittiest jabs wins the mini-challenge. This is what is left of Paris is Burning. The embers that still glow are, shall we say, a bit appropriative. “Werk”, “Realness”, “Shade”, and the rest of them have all entered into a cultural lexicon that is no longer exclusive to the community from whom it was basically taken (some of the vernacular stems from AAEV), and though Jennie Livingston’s documentary still exists as a cultural touchstone, it’s only in the most “basic” of ways. Read the rest of this entry »

Toil and Trouble: The Repression of Women in the American Dream and Roman Polanski’s Rosemary’s Baby

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(Author’s Note: This was my final paper for my Film and Dream class.)

Looking over Manhattan almost with a glare, the lavish apartment complex that Rosemary (Mia Farrow) and her husband Guy (John Cassavetes) tour is the stuff that dreams are made of. He’s a somewhat struggling actor, she’s… what is she? Rosemary is Guy’s wife. And as he begins to ascend into fame, and she is left with little more to do than take care of their as yet unborn child and fend off the nosey neighbors, an anxiety oozes into her mind that seems not to concern her husband. They may have finally made it, they may have finally achieved the American Dream, but that dream, as represented in Roman Polanski’s Rosemary’s Baby, is regressive, serves only to benefit men, to repress women, and uphold a restrictive familial ideal. It’s really just another nightmare.  Read the rest of this entry »

A Dream is a Wish Your Sinful Heart Makes: On “Eyes Wide Shut”, Wish Fulfillment, and Monogamy

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eyes-wide-shut(Author’s Note: This paper was written for my Film and Dream class. My professor liked my cover page.)

In this gigantic mansion, practically a wet dream for those turned on by wealth porn, cloaked and masked figures stand by the perimeter, watching as Dr. Bill Harford (Tom Cruise) is asked to doff his own disguise, after having explored rooms that seemingly fulfilled his erotic fantasies. These dreams, crafted by Stanley Kubrick, at first exemplify the Freudian assertion of wish fulfillment and then transform into nightmares that exist plainly as perilous reality, bouncing around ideas of gender politics, desire, and monogamy. Through heightened fantasy and looming danger, Eyes Wide Shut asserts that wish fulfillment isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be. Read the rest of this entry »