A recent review of “Dunkirk” claimed the film caters to a male audience, and that’s apparently a bad thing.
Mehera Bonner wrote a review titled, “I Think ‘Dunkirk’ Was Mediocre at Best, and It’s Not Because I’m Some Naive Woman Who Doesn’t Get It,” for Marie Claire, a site that is popular among hipster women.
She wrote in part:
But my main issue with Dunkirk is that it’s so clearly designed for men to man-out over. And look, it’s not like I need every movie to have “strong female leads.” Wonder Woman can probably tide me over for at least a year, and I understand that this war was dominated by brave male soldiers. I get that. But the packaging of the film, the general vibe, and the tenor of the people applauding it just screams “men-only”—and specifically seems to cater to a certain type of very pretentious man who would love nothing more than to explain to me why I’m wrong about not liking it. If this movie were a dating profile pic, it would be a swole guy at the gym who also goes to Harvard. If it was a drink it would be Stumptown coffee. If it was one of your friends, it would be the one who starts his sentences with “I get what you’re saying, but…”
Now, I’ve never once claimed to be a genius, although some might attribute that to me, but I’m pretty damn sure most of the people that went to see “Dunkirk” weren’t Harvard educated or the “swole guy at the gym.”
I don’t even go to the gym. In fact, the group I went to see the film with only one person who regularly goes to the gym, and she’s a woman. Props to myself for having the courage to admit I don’t like working out. Most people aren’t that brave in today’s modern society. So I’m not a big fan of these massive generalizations about people who went to see “Dunkirk.” I’ve spent 25 years carefully crafting my image and reputation. I don’t need Bonner destroying all my hard work simply because I went and saw a movie.
Secondly, this entire article is hilarious, and Bonner knows exactly what she’s doing. She’s clearly not an idiot. She’s setting up the narrative of victim perfectly. In the headline alone she stages the narrative that people will soon overreact in their disagreements with her. She’s so obvious about though that I first thought this article was parody. Clearly she’s not kidding though.
The whole catering to men thing is obvious. Men are drawn to war movies more than women. It’s science. It’s why young girls play with Barbies and 5-year old boys like action figures. They’re naturally drawn to the idea of combat, guns, explosions and conflict. It’s the exact same reason why the majority of tickets sold for romantic comedies are to women and the majority of tickets sold to action film are sold to men. It’s not a hard concept to grasp if you have part of a functioning brain.
She also added:
These stories shouldn’t be relegated to indie films and Oscar season. It’s up to giant powerhouse directors like Nolan to tell them, which is why Dunkirk feels so basic. It’s a summer war movie. It’ll make you fear for the future and pray that we never fight again. You might get kind of sick. If you’re like me, a random man will come up to you after and explain why you’re wrong for disliking it. But this war movie isn’t special. At the end of the day, it’s like all the rest of them.
I wonder if it ever gets exhausting to pretend that you’re a victim 24/7. I would hate to live that life.
Finally, “Dunkirk” was awesome, and some dumb opinion on the internet won’t change that. I went to see it at the Smithsonian Air and Space museum on the 70mm IMAX. It was incredible. The sounds, the action, the plot and everything else was incredible. It’s a tragic story about a military on the brink of defeat, and at the same time is inspiring as people answer the call for help.
People can moan and complain all they want. They can search for any tiny reason to nitpick the film, or in Bonner’s case, just say insane stuff in hopes to spark outrage. Those of us who value freedom, the military and life in general all agree that “Dunkirk” is one of the best war movies ever made.
If you don’t like that fact then I suggest taking some time to chill out and re-evaluating your life because it sounds awful.