Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Oh Ferris, you charming delinquent you...

I do love a good movie, and like most of us I have a soft spot for the classics.  Those well worn favourites that are so easy to pull out on a rainy Sunday afternoon and get lost in for a few hours.

But quite recently I took a closer look at some of my favourite "family friendly" flicks and noticed a bit of a disturbing trend.  Is it just me, or do a lot of them have pretty awful messages hidden inside their saccharin sweetness?  Don't believe me?  Well lets have a look at a few old chestnuts and see if they can stand up to the Kellie Morality Test!


Sleeping Beauty

I can hear you all now saying "Oh come on, you've already trashed this one!  Give the old girl a break!"  And you're right, I have had a go at dear old Sleeping Beauty and the less than stellar gender equality lessons contained therein, but cool your jets!  I'm not going to rag on Beauty this time.

Oh no, my bone to pick is with the Prince.  Okay, I'm going to put this as bluntly and as succinctly as possible.  It is NOT okay to go up to a sleeping girl, especially one you barely know, and kiss her.  This is not romantic, it's sexual assault.



Grease

I think I was about five the first time I ever watched this one.  Of course, all the more questionable teenage angst stuff went straight over my head at the time, but there was one message that I definitely understood which I wouldn't want taught to anyone!  Simply put?  If you want the boy or girl you like to like you back, then change everything about yourself.

Danny turns himself into a jock to please Sandy, and Sandy turns herself into a skanky ho to please Danny.  Sure, it's all sweetness and light the way they portray it, but lets be honest here, that's what they're selling.

Oh, and also that smoking is sexy ... apparently.

The Princess Bride

I do love this one, but if I'm going to be completely honest here I have to grudgingly admit that it fits into the category of "bad message movie".  And that message seems to be that if you act like a spoilt, unpleasant bitch, the boy you're treating worse than a red headed stepchild will fall in love with you.

Yeah, that's going to be a bit of a shock when you try that particular method out in the real world.  Generally speaking, if you act like a bitch to a boy, they're just going to get the hell away from you as quickly as they can.


Ferris Bueller's Day Off

God I love this movie, but lets be honest ... if someone you knew did all the things that Ferris did he'd probably get suspended from school, grounded, and possibly even arrested.  Sure he came across as the charismatic hero, all suave smiles and endearing "carpe diem" attitude, but what he really was, once you strip all the charm away, was a little schmuck.

He chucked a sickie, convinced his best friend to let him steal his father's car, snuck his girlfriend out of school, and then drove them all in said stolen car into the city.  If you saw that on a rap sheet, you'd be bemoaning the state of today's youth and advocating for bringing back corporal punishment in schools!

But because he's relatively good looking and oozes charm like freaking Cary Grant, he got away with it.


So, what about you guys?  Any movies out there that you absolutely love but when you think too hard about their messages they make you cringe?

43 comments:

  1. I love movies made from Jane Austen's books (hate the books, though, because they're tediously wordy). And they're about how girlies, even smart ones, need to get themselves a hubband.

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    1. That's very true! I love Austen, and I've read a good number of her books, but the theme is the same. If you want to be happy and fulfilled, better find yourself a rich, handsome guy to marry you.

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  2. Love the post and I once tried to pull a Ferris moment by calling off work. I guess because I didn't have those great sound affects that Ferris used my manager just said, "I'll see ya in about an hour!" :/

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    1. LOL! Well you know you're doing it right if your workmates start taking up a collection to pay for your medical bills, ala "Save Ferris"

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  3. Mulan was the only Disney movie I ever even respected a little bit - especially after I grew up and had my own daughters. Good God. I do not want them turning into simpering little idiots waiting for a man to come save them. Save yourselves ladies - or better yet, be smart enough to stay out of trouble in the first place!
    The comments on Princess Bride made me laugh. I generally like that movie because of all the awesome quotes, but you hit it on the head. Guys actually hate girls who are demanding bitches all the time. Pick your demands carefully and space those suckers out.
    The Ferris Beuller comments made me feel old. I would have thought this stuff was awesome had I watched it when I was younger. Now it just makes me feel like calling the cops and yelling get off my lawn. That kid is a schmuck.

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    1. I agree with you about Mulan, now there's a heroine that girls should be looking up to!

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  4. Wait a second, kissing people in a coma is NOT an acceptable means of therapy? Drat.
    And sure, if you breakdown just about any movie on paper they seem horrible. The Princess Bride is a charming story about a grandfather reading to his grandson. Ferris was about receiving the education of life and how a school can rally to save one of their community.
    On the other hand, Footloose is about a bunch of delinquents defying law and order to sow chaos in an otherwise peaceful town. Kevin Bacon causes anarchy because he refuses to follow a single law that he disagrees with. They should show the sequel, "Footloose 2: The Great Bomont Dance Riots".

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    1. Ah yes, that eroder of morality, dancing. I mean look at Billy Elliot, a little hoodlum if ever I saw one.

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  5. I never understood why Ferris Bueller was so admired. I always thought he was a manipulative, nasty little prick. Just like Tom Sawyer. He was just the same. Why are those traits seen as charming?

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    1. Because as much as we wish differently, at thirteen this is what girls are looking for in a boyfriend. Our taste improves as we get older though, at least for most of us.

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  6. I like Ferris in the movie but there is no way I could handle being friends with someone so cocky. That would be a nightmare. Poor, poor, Cameron.

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    1. I rewatched it recently and spent most of the movie wanting to wrap poor Cameron in a snuggie, give him a cup of hot chocolate, and just let him rest for a while.

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  7. How about 16 Candles? Continue to chase and repeatedly throw yourself at a guy. Eventually he will not only notice you, but he will fall madly in love with you.

    Excuse me while I wretch.

    Um, noooOOOOOooooo.... The truth is here honey, he may date you and eventually sleep with you, probably followed by either cheating on you or dumping you afterwards. But then you will take it because he is a GOD! and can do no wrong in your eyes.

    If he likes you, he should do things to let you know. If/when he does, if the feeling is mutual, go for it. If not, let him know. Don't lead him on.

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    1. Good one! I loved Sixteen Candles, but I agree, it was pretty much a blanket permission for teenage girls to throw themselves head first at a guy who they barely know and who ALREADY has a girlfriend!

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    2. There's also-
      Weird Science, Pretty in Pink, St Elmo's Fire, About Last Night, The Breakfast Club, War Games and I'm pretty sure I am forgetting several more in there. Oh the 80's...

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  8. Any of the movies where the 'heroine' stands around crying and screaming. Makes me want to slap somebody!

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    1. I always get flashbacks to Flying High when I see scenes like that. I just want to get a group together to line up and take turns slapping them.

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  9. Wow! Judging by a couple of the comments already elicited, your post has provoked quite a surprising (to me) amount of animosity about some boy/girl types! :)

    Had never thought about Sleeping Beauty that way. (What I usually wonder about is the relative likelihood or other of a relationship working out between two people who don't actually know much at all about each other. You know: how long might it have been before Romeo and Juliet began to bore each other?) Kellie, you are taking all the romance out of it .. that moment when he is so drawn to her that he leans over and .. (well now I am going to be thinking about the whole assault angle!)

    Ferris Beuler never seemed a good role model to me. Grease has always worried me a bit for the reasons you mentioned. Princess Bride though.. Don't touch that one! (Movie? :)

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    1. I can understand your protectiveness of The Princess Bride. It really is a good film. If you'd prefer we can rephrase it to "A film that shows that even if a girl is less than nice, she can still find deep, abiding love"

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    2. (Haha, you missed the movie line.. 'Don't touch that one!' is a line from My Best Friend's Wedding. It's one of the many dumb games our family (all movie mad) plays! :)
      I take your point on the lack of 'niceness' in the heroine. It's funny, I only ever really thought about the niceness of Wesley that he could see right through Buttercup's act, to know that in her heart she was his :)

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  10. For Pete's sake, now you have me questioning all of my favorite old movies. Goonies: Criminals are idiots, easily outwitted, and all financial woes can be cured by finding hidden treasure. No jerks or pedophiles there, at least. Sandlots: Mean neighbors are really just misunderstood nice, cool guys. Possible pedophile. That neighbor did have a whole lot of baseball items to lure in the boys. I gotta stop. I like being in the dark about my movies, thank you very much.

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    1. I'm sorry, hopefully you won't be forever scarred and unable to watch them ever again.

      Go watch Mulan, that'll make you feel better! No questionable morals there!

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  11. Hi pretty lady! I nominated you for the Liebster Award! Check out what you have to do here:

    http://www.enjoyingtheepiphany.com/2012/10/the-liebster-award.html

    :-)

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    1. Thank you!

      *Does victory dance, which pretty much is a cross between cabbagepatching and doing The Sprinkler*

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  12. Life as a House with Kevin Kline. Loved the movie but there were lots of things in there that aren't really good role models; son involved in turning tricks for drugs, his divorced wife having trouble with her marriage, coming to his house to help him make it instead of working on her marriage, etc., but it was a good story and made me cry......

    I never did see Ferris; not sure how I missed it. Disney movies end with "they lived happily ever after" but they never tell the truth of what happens after the prince rescues the princess; it is rarely happily ever after all the time.....

    betty

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    1. Ferris is definitely worth a watch. Sure if he was a real person you'd think he was a little punk, but in the movie it's hilarious!

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  13. Don't get me started on the deeper messages in Batman...

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    1. Oh, you're right about that one! Vigilantism in it's purest form.

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  14. I absolutely love the musical Man of La Mancha. However, I have failed every time to finish reading Don Quixote, because really it is about a man with severe mental problems charging around, causing problems and trying to murder people.

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  15. Well am I glad I popped on over to your blog world! (Thanks for stopping by my place by the way)

    I am with you on this one totally. It's all very well in movies, but in real life all the fairytales are creepy.

    I was especially struck with this on series 5 of Californication (yes, fairytale). Ok, David Duchovny (drool) was a bit of a lad, but you could forgive him all (most) of his antics. However, by series 5, I am starting to feel like his (TV) wife and wonder when he is going to grow up already?

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    1. Thanks for stopping by! Hope you enjoy my nonsense!

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  16. Hahaha, these are great. And so true!

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  17. Pretty Woman. Pretty self explanatory there. But LOVE your breaking-down of the "magic." So funny.

    Poor poor Sandy.

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    1. Ah yes, Pretty Woman, the lesson that if a rich older man pays you for sex and then buys you pretty things, he must love you.

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  18. I can't think of anything else offhand, my peeve is Horror Movies where the girls wear highheals and GO OUTSIDE! How crazy are they?
    My favorite show on TV (if there is such a thing) is BIG BANG THEORY. I just love that Sheldon! :-)

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    1. I totally agree! I spend a ridiculous amount of time in those movies screaming "For gods sake, don't go down there! Call the damned police!"

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  19. We are always talking about how in Disney movies the parents or at least a parents kids killed off or has been killed or has died, there is always a dead parent(s), poor little lost sad kid, It's crazy how many times they do that!

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