On our second date, I told Andrew that I had never seen Pretty Woman or Thelma & Louise. He was surprised by the former and appalled by the latter, and told me that at some point we would have to watch it. I had never made a point to not see it (which is the case with Pretty Woman; I never have to see Pretty Woman, and I never will. I get it, but I don’t care), it was just a movie I never got around to watching. Finally, we sat down together to watch it last night.
You guys: time has not been kind to this movie. I can appreciate the terrific performances of Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis, who are fantastic, and I think the script is very tight and well written. But damn, this seems so severely like a movie made by a man who pat himself on the back for being a feminist. It’s so calculated and ridiculous at times, and I imagine if a woman had been in charge it would have been less schlocky and more subtle. Also: Brad Pitt? This is what launched Brad Pitt’s career? Remember in the early ’90s when skinny boys with abs were, like, perfection? Thank God a few decades later we appreciate a man with some meat on him. Also, Hans Zimmer’s score made me LOL so much, and the FREEZE FRAME at the end killed me.
I get that part of me is jaded, and I can recognize how groundbreaking this movie was in terms of portraying female relationships on screen (plus, it’s been replicated and parodied to death). But you have to remember that it took, oh, twenty years for Bridesmaids to come out to restart the conversation about how women are portrayed on film, and you realize that any good that this film did was sort of swept under the rug. For the same reason why every comedy featuring a predominant female cast will ultimately be compared to Bridesmaids (you know, because we already have one of them, why make any more?), the legacy of Thelma & Louise seems so reduced to a watered-down, male take on Feminism With a Capital F.