Wednesday, June 17, 2015

DINOSAURS BEHIND THE CAMERA, TOO:  Jessica Ritchey, on Jurassic World:
It’s hard to believe a female director would let the characterization of Bryce Dallas Howard’s scientist that four credited screenwriters coughed up, stand. Poor Howard runs the gamut from “brittle” to “screaming” and seems mainly to exist so Chris Pratt (drained of every ounce of charm he showed in “Guardians of the Galaxy”) has someone to constantly be a horse’s ass to. Sneering at her choice of heels in the lab leaves an especially bad taste in the mouth. It’s not that a female director wouldn’t put her in heels, but a female director would know she wears heels because she likes the extra height; she can look her co-workers in the eye. A female director would know she wears sneakers on the trek to work and changes into them there. And a female director would know she keeps the sneakers in her bottom desk drawer so there’d be something to change into when the fleeing-for-your-life portion of the film starts. And yes, it’s “just” shoes, but it’s more than that, it’s paying attention to the details, it’s caring enough to see women as people with worthwhile stories to tell. Because that’s the great irony of effectively barring women and minorities from directing blockbusters. The tools may get fancier and more futuristic, but you’re stuck spinning tales that are hopelessly prehistoric. 


  1. Joseph Finn1:11 PM

    From The Dissolve: "Jurassic World, high heels, and why wardrobe matters"

    "It’s one thing to completely ignore an aspect of your story that doesn’t make sense in the real world; streamlining is necessary in screenwriting, and not every little detail can go remarked upon. But it’s another matter to introduce a problem with your character’s wardrobe and then neglect to satisfactorily solve it, as Jurassic World does. The film’s script utilizes Claire’s wardrobe to tell a part of its story—and to make a joke—but it doesn’t go all the way with it. In this one tiny but maddening detail, Jurassic World sets itself up to fail. Just like a woman setting off into the jungle in a pair of tasteful but deadly nude platform pumps. "

  2. A couple of articles have suggested that Trevorrow suggested that she wear flats, but Howard wanted to wear the pumps. At least they weren't Louboutins.

  3. Joseph Finn3:22 PM

    Perhaps a better director would have told her, "No, that looks stupid." (And besides, the character couldn't wear Louboutins, she's not evil.)

  4. Becca5:40 PM

    I had a lot of problems with all the characterizations in the movie, but of course, the women bothered me the most. I mean, all women realize how much they want babies when a brawny man who treats them badly finally looks their way. And they all cried at some point. But really, everyone was a stock character. It's the Commedia dell'arte of summer blockbusters. In a way, I'm surprised writers are still writing this crap. Why even bother? Do they really not know any women with inner lives of their own? That's so sad.

  5. bellawilfer1:31 PM

    That sounds more like Trevorrow tossing his actress under the bus than anything else.