Saturday, August 20, 2016

Ted Nugent and other artists refuse to toe PC line on Trump and Hillary

It's well established that arty types tend to dress left, so to speak. There are many reasons for this. One of the main ones is that artists are dreamers, driven by emotion. They create fictional, parallel worlds on stage, screen, canvas and other media. So it stands to, er, reason that they would identify with socialists, who also value their own feelings above all things and dedicate their lives to making society perfect, in the way they have imagined it.

Then there's the fact that many artistic forms are quite expensive to produce while having small, niche audiences. As a result they need some government funding to survive. Those who dole out this money will naturally be more left-leaning. And they tend to reward those who echo their politically correct beliefs loudest in their work, thereby making socialism the "norm" in these artistic fields.

That said, there are exceptions to the rule, particularly in the USA. I think this has much to do with that nation's history and enduring love of individualism. It's also got a big population. So if you can find your audience you can often survive and even thrive without state assistance, thereby avoiding the trap cited above. 

So, you do see well known American actors, musos and the like supporting politically incorrect candidates and causes from time to time. Ted Nugent is one of these rugged individualists. An avid hunter and outdoorsman, he posted this take on Trump a few months ago. I think he summed the situation up pretty well.

Then there's actor James Woods, who's very active on Twitter, and definitely no fan of Hillary Clinton!
Would be so great if there were some fearless, rebellious actors, rock stars and the like here in Australia! Aside from Angry Anderson -- who has pretty much retired from performing anyway -- no one else comes to mind ... 

Monday, July 11, 2016

Gay Sulu ticks off Takei like Ghostbusters galls fans

Clearly, movie-goers aplenty have had a gutful of all this politically correct retconning that's been going on lately. But now it's even pissing off industry professionals themselves.

Take the rewriting of the iconic Star Trek character Sulu as gay. An epic case of cinematic virtue signalling, it was also meant as an affectionate nod to the openly gay actor who played the role in the original TV series, George Takei.

But Takei himself is not happy with the decision. And with good reason. He says that the writer Gene Rodenberry had a very clear vision for the character, and we should honour that. Good point.

Also, it diminishes the craft of acting itself, in a way similar to the furore over casting in that Nina Simone biopic. The rewrite implies that because an actor is gay, characters he plays must have the same sexual identity. Carts and horses come to mind here ...

The politically correct alteration puts the screenwriter Simon Pegg in an invidious position, too. Given the sensitivity around the whole issue of gay rights, even defending his decision against George Takei could be seen as homophobia. No wonder he's been so careful about it.

It could bite Pegg on the bum in another way, too. If this kind of right-on retconning becomes standard, a remake of his own movie Shaun of the Dead will suffer. That's because the character of Shaun himself will have to be rewritten as a social justice warrior.

At least the publicity surrounding Star Trek has not been as bad as it has been for that other sci-fi remake, Ghostbusters. The antipathy towards this new "feminist" version has been off the scales

The SJWs who support such a lame, right-on "re-imagining" of the 1980s classic see this resistance as more evidence of the ingrained sexism it's trying to combat. But it's a lot more complicated than that. Much of it is just die-hard fans saying: "Look if you wanna create something excruciatingly PC, fine. Just come up with something new and original. Don't cynically rehash a classic, thereby destroying our memory of it!"

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Peter FitzSimons and luvvie mates want us to keep the home fires burning

Whenever there's some potential change to current trade policies that means Australian arty types will have to compete on a more equal footing with their counterparts overseas, local lefties suddenly do a massive U-turn and get all patriotic on our arses. They say we Aussies need to protect "our culture" from being flooded by imports. We need to hear "our stories" told in "our voices".

This gargle from Pirate Pete Fitzsimons is an example of this emotive, disingenuous and self-serving line of argument. He and his earnest comrades in, er, arts are spooked by the latest proposal to change territorial copyright laws

It is, I grant you, a complex issue but the bottom line is this. It is our united view that, beyond all matters of commerce, it is the  duty of the federal government – be it the Turnbull or Shorten government – to support the Australian campfire where Australian stories are told, to Australians.

Jeez. Ya couldn't get more dinky-di Strayan than that now, could ya cobber? Fair dinkum, 'ken oath!

I always find this amusing because much of the rest of the time they're zealously advocating multi-culturalism, viciously and often falsely accusing non-lefties of racist thought-crime for not kowtowing to their politically correct demands.

If they sincerely believe the pronouncements they make when in peak luvvie virtue-signalling mode then surely they would welcome all stories, from all cultures, told in all accents, wouldn't they? 

Nope. Not when their massively inflated incomes are at risk of being lowered a tad by genuine competition, they won't.  

Monday, May 23, 2016

Elijah Wood's paedophilia claims run counter to MSM's anti-Catholic narrative

It's interesting that there's such a strong association between Catholicism and paedophilia these days. The way the MSM focuses on this issue and hounds prominent figures in the Catholic Church (such as George Pell) you'd think that this was where most of it occurs.

There's obviously long been a serious problem there. But is it any worse than in other denominations? The evidence seems to imply it isn't. It also appears that the priesthood in general is no more full of paedophiles than any other section of society.

I think it's fair to say that the perception that every second Catholic priest is a kiddy fiddler has much to do with the left-leaning media's enduring animosity towards Christians in general and Catholics in particular.

Which is probably why we have heard so little about how the scourge afflicts other sections of society, such as the film industry. If Elijah Wood's claims are to be believed Hollywood is chockas with child abusers who've been getting away with their crimes for years. Notably he compares this alleged massive, ongoing cover-up to the one that allowed Jimmy Savile to escape scrutiny for so long and ultimately escape justice.

Sounds plausible to me. The place is known for its decadence. And money is power, after all.

Politics is also a possible factor. Tinseltown movers and shakers are left-liberals more often than not. And this ideological bent aligns with the rest of the MSM in America. So it makes sense that high profile journalists wouldn't be too keen on venturing into Hollywood's secretive nooks and crannies in search of scuttling rock spiders. As a dutiful cultural change agent you wouldn't want to make your fellow travellers look bad, now would you?

Then there's the vanity aspect. If you're a big name reporter who gets known for shining a light on the film capital's underbelly you could easily become persona non grata amongst its elites. No more A-list parties for you! Given that ego drives journos nearly as much as it does actors, singers, dancers and directors this would be a significant discouragement to many of them IMO.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Ghostbusters 3 is a toxic mix of PC feminism and corporate cynicism

This new ultra-PC version of Ghostbusters is stirring up an absolutely massive negative reaction. The trailer for it is the most disliked YouTube video in history. The rightier reaches of the blogosphere are getting stuck into it with gusto. And more than a few film critics are saying it'll be a train wreck without a doubt.

Needless to say, this criticism is met with howls of "misogyny!" from the usual suspects, and there are squillions of those. I'm sure that if the social justice warriors weren't so fired up about it, there'd be even more condemnation of the whole project, even from left-leaning cinephiles.

The desperation with which right-on feminist types are defending the project and attacking its critics is as pathetic as it is extreme. This is a good takedown of one of them, Marisa Kabas.

As well as illustrating the falsehood and nastiness of her attack on popular film critic James Rolphe, it has a good summary of the motivations of the movie's defenders:

What’s fascinating with criticisms of new Ghostbusters vs SJW defenders, is it’s all projection from the defenders. People defending new Ghostbusters believe people hate it because gender, and can only defend the film based on gender. Criticisms are based on how the jokes are bad, how the effects are bad, how it’s a cheap cash in on a much loved classic. SJWs are absolutely obsessed with identity politics to the point that they project their obsession onto everyone else. They don’t listen to criticisms, they don’t consider Occam’s Razor, they jump straight to the conclusion that all those down votes, all the negative reaction videos and comments, are based on the literal hatred of women.

Bang on the money!

Look at everything else the PC Left are arcing up about and you see the same primitive psychology at work. They simply cannot see people as individuals. They see only group identities. (Gawd. What a sad, stunted view of humanity!) So they think that anyone who disagrees with them must be doing the same thing from another direction. Consequently they are doomed to perpetuate the very bigotry they so often falsely accuse others of inflicting on society.

Both the production of Ghostbusters 3 and the vicious sliming of those who criticize it are motivated by this rigid ideology. But there's another toxic ingredient in the mix: corporate greed. Clearly, Hollywood money men (and women) thought it was time to rehash this classic. It had a ready made brand that could be leveraged for sure fire bucks. But that soulless goal is why so many people are saying it has "turkey" written all over it:

The reaction to the “Ghostbusters” reboot is the unsurprising, and dare I say long overdue, response from a generation of fans that have repeatedly watched their most iconic childhood memories cut up and sold for parts. Directors, producers, and writers are more focused on the shiny new reboot or sequel, dishing out forced fan-service callbacks with the belief that success is intrinsically tied to more of the same, that a feeling cannot be replicated without replicating that which brought on the feeling in the first place.

Movie lovers resent being taken for granted. And they're saying so now. Their displeasure will also be expressed in low box office figures, I suspect.

Actually, the whole phenomenon is a bit like local conservatives who are really pissed off about Turnbull and his, er, malcoholics seizing control of their party and steering it leftward. Vote whisperer Mark Textor says these people don't matter. But they have different ideas. Just as film fans will probably stay away from Ghostbusters 3 in droves, a large percentage of the Liberal Party's traditional support base will not vote as its strategists predict, I reckon.

Monday, May 2, 2016

SJWs seem intent on destroying the craft of acting

Social justice warriors are everywhere, of course. But one area they've long been very active in is the arts. Really depressing, because art is the very definition of self expression. And you'd hope that in a truly free and open society you can be true to your artistic vision and create whatever the hell you want.

But nup. Those right-on finger-waggers are there to tell you what's acceptable and what's not. Take that Nina Simone biopic. The perpetually offended arced up because even though the character was played by a woman of colour, she wasn't, er, colourful enough! 

As this article about the furore makes clear, this wasn't the only recent film casting decision to enrage the cultural commisars:

The furor over Nina is the latest in a series of Hollywood controversies over not just race but sexuality, gender and biological status. Hollywood has seen the pro-gay film Stonewall boycotted for marginalising people of colour, the transgender film The Danish Girl criticised for casting a non-transgender actor as its star, and the upcoming Marvel film Doctor Strange blasted for giving the role of an Asian male to Tilda Swinton.

A common element in many of these complaints is that the actor himself shouldn't be allowed to play a character whose political identity he doesn't share in real life. And this standard isn't just being applied to movies being made now. Classic flicks from the past are now being dissected along these brutally simplistic lines.

Take this piece about how the casting of a memorable female character in James Cameron's classic Aliens was "problematic":

Aside from Ellen Ripley herself, the most badass character in James Cameron’s action-packed sequel is Private Vasquez, the tough-as-nails Colonial Marine who is almost always holding a big gun and leading her fellow Marines into battle with the Xenomorphs. When we first meet Vasquez, she’s doing pull-ups straight out of hyper-sleep, and when we last see her, she dies one of the most heroic deaths in the entire franchise. In between, Vasquez spouts off one-liners and blasts away Xenomorphs like it’s going out of style, and it’s no secret why she became one of the most fan-favorite characters in the movie.

What most did not realize at that time, and what many still haven’t figured out, is that Vasquez, a Latino woman, was played in Aliens by Jenette Goldstein, a freckle-faced white actress. It’s a testament to Goldstein’s acting abilities, to say the very least, that most never caught on to the fact that Vasquez was not played by a Latina actress, but what’s worth discussing here is that Vasquez was, well, not played by a Latina actress. In an effort to appear less white, Goldstein was outfitted with dark contact lenses to hide her blue eyes and yes, she was even covered in full face-and-body makeup to cover her white skin.

Which makes you wonder about what the ramifications of all this social justice activism are for the craft of acting. Hell, it has make-believe at its very core! When you play a role that a writer has dreamed up you become what you are not. And the measure of your skill is how thoroughly you can convince the viewer that you are that person -- and a real, living, breathing one at that!

But now in many cases daring to do that is deemed discriminatory by the diversity police. And if these doctrinaire numpties have their way, it may even become verboten.

Gawd. What a strange world we live in. It's like being in a bloody movie ...

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Now that the gender binary is a drag, acts will have to catch up!

I've long found it amusing that drag gets a pass from the thought police. It's parodying women -- holding them up to ridicule -- after all. Clearly this omission has much to do with the fact that it's a gay genre. So the usual rules don't apply, natch. So silly ...

Back in the nineties in Melbourne I used to know several bolshie women who would get all het up if they saw "misogynous" hetero blokes frock up (like on The Footy Show). Then they would go out to drag shows in gay bars and cheer the acts! They had the whole situation completely arse about, as usual.

By definition hetero blokes desire women. They are in awe of their beauty. Women are the mysterious, compelling other that they want to attract towards them. And it's women's feminine otherness that is their most powerfully intoxicating attribute.

So when straight men wear women's clothes it's usually a big joke to them (and most women, too). They revel in the grotesque awkwardness of their new appearance, often acting even blokier than usual. They're mocking themselves, mostly. But gay drag, in holding femininity up to ridicule, seems inherently more misogynistic IMO.

Well, however you choose to look at the performance genre, it depends very much on that eeevil gender binary doesn't it? And given that so-called social progressives have now officially deemed this to be a divisive weapon of oppression wielded by the patriarchy, and replaced it with a whole new paradigm of "gender fluidity" this could prove, er, problematic for screaming -- or rather, miming -- queens who cross dress for cash, don't ya think?

Neeedless to say, social justice warriors who live to demonise straight white males will go easier on the "gay community" in the short term. But they've been eating their own with increasing frequency of late (take what's happened to gay leftie Stephen Fry on a couple of occasions, for example). Could only be a matter of time before we read about the gender equity police throwing their usual (double) standards out the window and chucking massive tanties over the acts of certain prominent gay drag performers, I reckon.