I watched this film a couple of weeks ago now so this will be a short five point summary rather than a full-blown analysis…
1. The film is good. The overarching plot is gripping and encompasses several themes; love, war, friendship, poverty, celebrity, the brutality of human nature etc. In short it’s a high quality melting pot; a hybrid of awesomeness, if you will.
2. The characters are interesting. Protagonist Katniss Everdeen, played by the smokin’ hot Jennifer Lawrence, is seriously cool. I now want to learn how to use a bow and arrow. And speaking of hotties, Liam Hemsworth is super fine also. Must run in the family.
3. The Hunger Games contains an explosive cocktail of historical, cultural and literary influences. If you like Gladiator, Nineteen Eighty-Four, Lord of the Flies, The Truman Show or Big Brother, then you will probably like this film.
4. The Hunger Games makes you think, which I didn’t really expect. Then again, given that the film is set in a post-apocalyptic dystopia, it’s hardly surprising that it gives you so much food for thought.
5. And finally, The Hunger Games, as the title may suggest, is EXCITING. Its action-packed, prey-hunting scenes are reminiscent of Jurassic Park (I & II, obv, the third one sucked) while the awesome graphics, wicked outfits and cool sci-fi shiz are all a delight to watch.
Summary: Go see the film, immediately if not sooner.
Samantha Brick’s controversial article has caused a worldwide media storm. I originally thought the feature was a hoax, and that Samantha Brick might just be the funniest female comedian of all time – or possibly the cleverest self-publicist. Alas this was not to be, for it would appear Samantha was being deadly serious, and as a result she is now enduring the world’s wrath.
Following the mass media revolt (which has totally eclipsed that Angelina Jolie leg-bombing craze) Samantha decided to go on This Morning and defend her article. During her appearance not only was she trending #1 in the UK, but #2 globally. If you missed the show, here are the highlights…
1. Hello Samantha Brick
Samantha introduces herself to Eamonn Holmes and the gang, declaring: “I live in the middle of France, I live in the middle of the countryside, with my husband and our dogs, and I’m a housewife first and foremost, I write part-time around my chores at home.” Part-time writing probably for the best Sam, lest you wish to endure written abuse on a daily basis.
2. Samantha takes a trip to Delusion-ville
“Were you asked to write the article?” asks Eamonn. “Or did you say ‘I want to write this article’ because you felt so strongly about it?”
“The background to the article was – and I think I mentioned this anecdote in the piece – I walk my dogs every day, as you do, in the countryside, and I passed a woman that I know. Her kids stay at my house with my stepson, we know each other at social events etc. and I waved at her – everyone does that in the French countryside, we all know each other – she didn’t wave back. And I just thought, ‘Blimey!'”
Except Samantha didn’t just think ‘Blimey’, did she. In fact, I’d say she went about five stages beyond the normal response of “Blimey”. I imagine Samantha’s train of thought at that point in time actually went something like this: “I am incredibly beautiful and this woman is clearly jealous of my undeniable beauty. This, and only this, is the reason why she blanked me.
“It can’t be because she was focusing on the road, nor because she was temporarily blinded by my dazzling smile (although many have been). No, it was definitely because she envies my good looks. And now I must write about this life-changing event on the Daily Mail website.” Rational, no?
3. The quack starts quacking
Perturbed psychologist Emma Kenny then pipes up with, “I don’t think the controversy has genuinely been about the fact that you suggested you get treated a certain way because you have good looks -”
[Samantha randomly cuts across] “And also I’m 41, those things don’t happen to me every day of the week, it’s half a dozen encounters that have happened to me over forty years, it’s not like that’s happening all the time.”
But that’s the point Samantha, you did say it happens all the time IN YOUR STUPID ARTICLE.
4. The quack goes quackers
Emma Kenny gets increasingly wound up: “It’s not necessarily that that’s offended people, it’s the suggestion that women generically and in society don’t like you because you’re pretty, and from my point of view, and as somebody who has varied friends in diverse groups, I have never felt as a woman disliked because of the way that I look – and definitely not disliked women.”
Okay Emma, chill out with the sanctimonious chat. We’ve all been jealous, whether occasionally or frequently, of people that are visibly better looking than us. It’s like, Darwinian or something, innit? Survival of the fittest (in every sense of the word). And let’s be honest, nobody really likes to be beaten on the evolutionary front.
Nevertheless, I would argue that most of us have the intelligence to recognize that there’s more to a person (and indeed to life) than looks. I would also argue that you can appreciate another person’s looks regardless of their sex, that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and that it’s enjoyable to be around friends who are happy in their own skin.
5. Brick backlash
“I’ve had thousands of e-mails to my personal account not to mention all the rubbish on Twitter. And women have fallen into two camps, they’ve either gone: ‘You’re off your head’, ‘You’re a nutter’, ‘What are you on about’, ‘You’re really arrogant’. Or they’ve said to me, ‘You’ve just reiterated the story of my life – thank you'”.
At this point she actually wells up and I start feeling sorry for her, but then I remember she is a self-indulgent narcissist. Bit harsh? Ah whatevz, she deserves it.
6. Samantha hits a nerve
“It’s really difficult when you’re perceived as being attractive, other women do not like it.”
Sadly, I think there’s some truth in this. I believe most women have the capacity to feel jealous of other women who they deem good looking, but I don’t agree with Samantha that all women instantly dislike a woman purely because she’s good looking. That would be absurd.
I know so many women (friends, family, acquaintances etc.) who are beautiful, but I don’t dislike them. I HATE THEM. Jokes. Seriously though, why would you dislike a friend for being good looking? Surely you’re not really friends if all you think about is how you compare with each other in physical terms…
7. Ruth Langsford chips in
“It’s the fact that you say women don’t like you,” says Ruth in a calm and collected (but blatantly peed off) manner. “It’s one thing to say you’re attractive, but to actually come out loud and say it and put it in print and say: ‘I am a beautiful woman’, does have a certain arrogance about it. We don’t hate beautiful women, we don’t like arrogant women – or men actually.”
Samantha then offers a rebuttal, saying: “You’ll appreciate the feature is 1200 words, it’s a compression of all my experiences… a lot of my friends and family have read it and said: ‘God blimey, is that you Sam?’ But you know that’s one tiny aspect of who I am as a human being, and I’ve put it into a feature, so of course I’m not surprised that people think ‘what an arrogant person’”.
“I don’t have those experiences every day of my life… of course I live in the middle of the French countryside, I see about 2 cars that go pass my house.”
Yes Samantha, you live in the middle of nowhere and have limited human contact, and maybe that’s why you have a warped view of life and a deluded perception of yourself. Just a theory.
8. Emma Kenny brings out the big guns
The psychologist, who by this point is about to implode, turns to Samantha and says, “So what you’re actually saying is, this is a minority of experiences and this doesn’t apply to you…”
“These are experiences that have happened to me without question,” Samantha retorts.
“But on a minor level?” The psychologist snaps back.
“Err, well, no.” says Samantha.
“So on a major level?”
“There’s shades of grey.”
Read: there are shades of bullshit, all of which can be found in Samantha’s article.
9. Eamonn plays hard ball
“But what there are not shades of is that you definitely believe that you are very good looking?” asks Eamonn.
“It’s not that I believe it,” says Samantha. “I believe the perception of how men approach me. Do I think I’m attractive? Yes I do. Is that a big crime?”
Eamonn then asks the killer question, “Why do you believe you’re good looking?”
Come on, we’ve all been thinking it. She’s not that hot. If Angelina Jolie had written that article, she may have had a point. But in this instance, and without meaning to sound cruel or brutal, the article seems somewhat disproportionate to the face behind it.
10. Samantha stands her brittle ground
“You go to a dinner party or party, there are ten blokes there,” probes Eamonn. “What percentage of those blokes do you know are attracted to you?”
“All of them, all of them Eamonn,” answers Samantha in a tongue-in-cheek manner.
Except it’s not tongue-in-cheek is it, because we know she genuinely believes this to be true. Puke.
Eamonn then asks: “Do you regret writing this article?”
“No I don’t regret writing it. I pitched a headline for the feature, ‘Why Does the Sisterhood Hate Attractive Women“, and I stand by that – women do not like attractive women.”
Err, what about lesbians? Or women who are bisexual? Or women who are related to eachother? Or women who don’t have an inferiority complex? Or women who appreciate aesthetic beauty? Or women who aren’t completely shallow or obsessed by physical appearance? Seems there’s quite a few women who don’t fit into your sweeping statement, Samantha.
11. Ruth Langsford makes a very sensible comment
“I have no problem with you thinking you’re attractive,” says Ruth. “I do have a problem with you saying to me as a woman: ‘I probably won’t like you when you walk into a room because you’re attractive’. And I do take offense at that because I think it’s totally wrong.” Hear hear.
12. Samantha Brick puts in the final nail
“Women do not like attractive women, and that’s been proven to me by the thousands of vile messages I’ve had on Twitter, the thousands of vile e-mails I’ve had to my personal account, the messages I’ve had on my own answerphone.”
If anything, I’d say the countless messages, Tweets and e-mails protesting against Samantha’s article prove that the Sisterhood is actually stronger than ever. Women around the globe are putting up a united front against Brick’s backward and two-dimensional portrayal of how females think and interact with one another. And for being the catalyst behind all this, Samantha Brick, I applaud you.
Worth a read:
- Tim Dowling’s hilarious spoof, Like Samantha Brick, I have been hated for my good looks
- Hadley Freeman’s insightful piece, The Mail simply threw Samantha Brick to the wolves