Wednesday, February 28, 2007


I point to two blog entries, Boobies: Not Just for Gawking at Anymore and Subtle, both by Erica C. Barnett.

The first regards a communal house of vegans desire to hire a nursing mother to provide milk for them. The second regards movies and movie advertising.

I completely understand and agree with the vegans that human milk should be reasonable to include in their diet, to a point. For me, a line is crossed somewhere between your friend bringing over some butter she made herself and making some biscuits to celebrate and hiring a woman to be your cow.

Mind you, assuming you're able to be gentle and only take what she can "muster", it might not be that you're specifically exploiting the person you hire, but you are stepping veganism passed a line and onto a very, very slippery slope... and my writing into the land of uncomfortably mixed metaphors.

The second takes the movies Black Snake Moan and Hostel Part II to task for their salacious advertising campaigns, or content, or both... I'm not sure.

Anyway, as someone who has been privately celebrating a lot, and publicly a bit, over the old school trashy quality to these campaigns, as well as that for Grindhouse, if leery of their actual content, I'm torn.

For now, the retro-trashy and blatantly trashy is a novelty, especially for someone like me well-schooled in and affectionate toward the material this is referencing and paying tribute to, and is almost completely aimed toward a more arthouse crowd. I'm not sure it breaking out of that would be good, however.

I think the original run of trashy movies in the '70s already leaned to heavily on lazy ideas. For example, an action movie with a female protagonist necessitates violence against women. Add to that a desire to justify your sexy poster with actual nudity, and it's too easy to kill two birds with one stone by having her raped... there's a third bird killed there that I'm not sure needs to be discussed right now.

It's certainly possible, within the exploitation genre, to make a movie in which a female protagonist is raped and have that dealt with in a serious way, I'd throw out Ms. 45, as an easy example. However in many, including many that are generally good, it's used lazily.

Mind you, if Black Snake Moan lives up to what it claims to be, it should be more than that. Hostel Part II is a sequel to a movie about men being tortured. I'm not sure the cry of concern expressed by Ms. Barnett is not premature, and certainly that of some of the commenters is way over the top.

I don't know. So far, the return to the trash barrel has not yielded as much quality fruit as I'd like. Previous efforts by Eli Roth and, say, Rob Zombie's movies are not without entertainment value, but something feels missing to me, and I can't put my finger on it.

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