HOLLYWOOD – Avatar and Titanic director, James Cameron received widespread criticism after claiming Wonder Woman should have been more feminist.
It’s an odd state of affairs. On the one hand, it looks like mansplaining on a Titanic scale, which has seen James Cameron thrown into an Abyss of opprobrium. But the actual comments he made seemed like a valid response. He stated in an interview with British newspaper The Guardian:
All of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over Wonder Woman has been so misguided. She’s an objectified icon, and it’s just male Hollywood doing the same old thing! I’m not saying I didn’t like the movie but, to me, it’s a step backwards. Sarah Connor was not a beauty icon. She was strong, she was troubled, she was a terrible mother, and she earned the respect of the audience through pure grit.
As galling as it can be to have an older geezer telling a female director what she should have done with a female character, her response talks more about how the audience – specifically women – react to the character, rather than the depiction of the character herself. Here it is in full:
Audience react to it, so it must be good is an argument, but it isn’t necessarily a strong one. I loved Wonder Woman and I think it still had problems. Ultimately, there’s always going to be debate about objectification of female characters which often comes down to intention and literally point of view. The male gaze stuff isn’t as popular as it once was, as a theory. And here we should note that a Marvel comic book movie isn’t some auteur-led vision of the director alone. So all this is just to say we shouldn’t shut down debate quite so quickly. We’re not Aliens, snapping about like Piranhas, waiting for some Judgement Day to come. We’re human beings try to work out how best to deal with each other via the Avatar of art.