Monday, June 18, 2007

Two thoughts on Knocked Up

1. At first he didn't even remember that they had sex, but then eight weeks later he remembered the whole condom disaster in great detail. This is a minor quibble, but it seems like a stupid inconsistency just for the sake of a couple jokes that weren't even funny.

2. More importantly, the not-so-sub-text of the movie was that women are just better than men (prettier, smarter, better-adjusted) and that this gives them the right to nag improve their husbands/boyfriends, or to at least try. The only thing that the guys have is that they're funnier, which is always either a defense against the nagging improvement or a way to entertain the women, since they've got nothing else. This really bothers me, because it's exactly the same formula as half the sitcoms on TV, starring a fat comedian and his hot wife. And it's not an excuse that Judd Apatow (the director) is married to Leslie Mann (the sister.)* This is a significant step down from Freaks and Geeks, where the Geek actually realized he was too good for the cheerleader, and the Freak couple had the most interesting relationship on the show.

This is a return to the idea of the domestic goddess, updated for the world of career women. Oscar Wilde tore this to shreds at the end of An Ideal Husband, by bringing the wife down to size. This is probably why the Knocked Up birth scene is so graphic--probably the most graphic I've seen in a movie: it symbolically brings her down to size. But that just implies that female biology is secretly ugly, so the original idea that women are better than men is proven wrong in the end.

It's a very anti-feminist movie.

* Judd Apatow is not fat, but he's less attractive than Leslie Mann. Leslie Mann is funny, but she's probably not as funny as Judd Apatow.

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