JUST LIE BACK AND ENJOY IT: Movie Reviews of Elle, Nocturnal Animals and The Salesman by Howard Casner

For questions: hcasner@aol.com

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rev-3SPECIAL NOTE: the review of Elle is especially riddled with spoilers, but I don’t know really how else to talk about it.

There has been a lot written of late when it comes to the use of rape as a plot point in movies about women. More and more, for many viewers and critics, the use of such a storyline has turned into a cheap device and exploitive way to get an audience, especially men, to tune in.

It may have even become so polarizing that, to some extent, it has made it difficult to write about a film in which sexual assault is central to the action.

For example, I have seen three movies lately that have employed attacks on women as part of the narrative. Two were explicitly rapes, the other a bit more ambiguous. But in the two that were explicit, I couldn’t tell if the rape felt exploitive because that’s what it was, or that it felt exploitive because the political climate today is such that it doesn’t allow it to be anything but. Read the rest of this entry »