Print Article | Email Article | Write To Us

I Think This Movie Hates People

04/15/2012 Comments (23)

I'm not boycotting movie director Joss Whedon or anything. I'm just saying I'm not very interested in his movies or television shows anymore. Look, I've been a Joss Whedon guy for a long time. I watched Buffy. I watched Angel. I was all about Firefly. I even defended Dollhouse even though absolutely nothing happened for a looooong time.

I enjoyed his work so much that I didn't even altogether blame Whedon for infusing vampires with souls. But that's why I've been so curious why he's taken the soul out of everyone else. Recently I read that Buffy, in the comic book series that takes place after the show ended, is getting an abortion. Why? According to Whedon, there's not enough abortion in movies and television.

I think strongly that teen pregnancy and young people having babies when they are not emotionally, financially, or otherwise equipped to take care of them, is kind of glorified in our media right now. You know, things like Secret Life [of an American Teenager] and Juno and Knocked Up – even if they pretend to deal with abortion, the movies don’t even say the word “abortion.” It’s something that over a third of American women are going to decide to have to do in their lives. But people are so terrified that no one will discuss the reality of it — not no one, but very few popular entertainments, even when they say they’re dealing with this issue, they don’t, and won’t. It’s frustrating to me.

Seriously? Hollywood and the media are too pro-life for Joss Whedon? That kinda' ticked me off but I always assume that everyone in Hollywood is a pro-abortion liberal so I guess it didn't shock me that much. I compartmentalized it, I guess.

But yesterday, I went to see "Cabin in the Woods" that was written by Joss Whedon. Now, I'm not going to ruin the ending because people spent a lot of time and money to make something and don't need to have me ruining it for those people who like to see anti-human storylines. But I will tell you what I thought as I was sitting there. I thought "I think Joss Whedon hates people."

Look, I'm sure he's nice to people in real life. I'm just not sure he likes humanity all that much. The movie is literally anti-human. When many many people's lives hang in the balance, what do the characters do? They light up a dube and makes cynical comments that maybe it's time that humans stop running the planet anyway.

The main characters are all cynical and just plain hate people. It's hard to decide who hates the humans more, the monsters in the movie or the moviemakers.

I like going to the movies. In action movies, I've always been a little turned off by the cavalier nature of a high body count. I've found that there's something at least a little bit sane about horror movies in that while it shows people getting killed, the genre acknowledges that there's something horrific about each killing. The movies make you root for the victims to get away from the killer no matter how many times they trip in the woods. There's something pro-human about it in a weird way. Horror movies acknowledge evil.

But "Cabin in the Woods" is horrific because it doesn't root for the humans. It cynically invites you to enjoy the destruction of people.

Whedon is an atheist and I can't help but think that his worldview played a large role in the formation of this movie. Whedon is clever. There's no denying that. But clever ain't good. Clever ain't uplifting. Clever ain't grace.

Whedon isn't alone either. Did you see Avatar? It too, took a very dim view of humanity. It wanted you to root against the humans. The Planet of the Apes remake took a similar worldview. It's a frightening trend, don't you think? It's like those people who've asked me how I can bring five children into such an overcrowded and miserable world. But I'm neither crowded or miserable. I'll admit five kids and one bathroom can cause some minor calamities but nothing we can't deal with. I'm not saying the world isn't full of suffering. It is. But it's also filled with laughter and love and grace and all those things the soul acknowledges.

Me? I'm still rooting for humanity.

Filed under

About Matthew Archbold

Matthew Archbold
  • Get the RSS feed
Matt Archbold graduated from Saint Joseph's University in 1995. He is a former journalist who left the newspaper business to raise his five children. He writes for the Creative Minority Report.