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Old August 4 2011, 12:35 AM   #622
InklingStar
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Re: AVENGERS - movie Discussion, News, Interviews, Pics till release 2

Dennis wrote: View Post
InklingStar wrote: View Post
Dennis wrote: View Post

It's all important. Complaints about "political correctness" are always red herrings.
Whether you call it a red herring or not, if filmmakers focus more on making sure there are equal amounts of men and women or people of various ethnicities in a story, rather than the story itself or faithfulness to the source text it is a problem in my opinion. I am glad Peter Jackson is staying fairly faithful to Tolkien's text for The Hobbit rather than making seven of the dwarves female in order to provide balance. I like what I have seen of the Avengers project so far and I trust Joss Whedon will not feel the need to go the Buffy or River route and make Black Widow smarter, wittier, and physically stronger than the other guys just to provide "balance".
It's a red herring because it's a false dichotomy - filmmakers don't do it instead of making good movies, and casting non-whites or women in any role has never actually done damage in and of itself to a single film or tv show or play. When you scratch the surface of arguments against it, you always run quickly into nothing more substantial than reflexive narrow mindedness at best and often outright bigotry masquerading as demands for "faithfulness."

It's a fabricated issue - a problem that doesn't actually exist outside of the context of a conversation in which it's being complained about. Most objections to "political correctness" are simply unwillingness to be required to treat people with courtesy and respect.

I mean, here the knock against the movie is that the director might give Scarlett Johannson a more entertaining, sharper character to play than a comic book writer assigned to a minor character decades ago? Quelle horreur - but it won't cost the studio a single ticket sold to anyone other than a few politically-motivated head counters, easily made up by improving the movie for the vast majority who don't obsess about such things.
I do not wish to derail the thread any further but I must quickly respond to this. I disagree that arguments against political correctness are often nothing more than covers for bigotry. Going back to the Hobbit example I would not support changing some of the Dwarves to women not because I am bigoted and sexist, but because that is not what is in the text. This sort of change would alter the meaning of the story. On the other hand, casting a black actor as Heimdall in Thor did not alter the story in any way, and the actor did great with the role. Same thing with Michael Clarke Duncan as the Kingpin in Daredevil. It really did not alter the story to change the character's skin color, and Duncan was awesome in the role. (Am I the only one who likes that movie, by the way?)

I think that complaints against excessive PC really stem from frustration over a perceived lack of respect for original materials. Rather than accusing such people of bigotry, racism, and sexism, you should see them in the same light as a Star Trek fan finding fault with the rebooted movie because of how it differs from the original series. (For the record, I liked both.)
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