Hollywood’s Latest Genre: The Monster’s Movie
The #MeToo movement has become Hollywood’s biggest controversy since actors performed using Blackface. It has already ruined the careers of some of the biggest names in the industry, including Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey. With all the accusations out in the open, there is one question that still remains on everybody's mind: Is it right for me to watch the movies created by these monsters? Many people are already boycotting productions associated with people like Weinstein and Spacey, finding it offensive and unethical to watch any work in which these men were involved.
Harvey Weinstein’s IMDb lists three hundred twenty-eight titles he has produced under The Weinstein Company. Among them are Pulp Fiction, The Lord of The Rings trilogy, Good Will Hunting and many other critically acclaimed masterpieces. Weinstein’s films are not the only ones under fire; John Lasseter, the Chief Creative Officer of Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios has produced pretty much all of Pixar’s classics, ranging from the original Toy Story (which he also directed) to last year’s Coco. He has recently been let go of Pixar after complaints regarding his behavior towards women in the workplace. Weinstein and Lasseter are only two of the 81 publically reported celebrities accused of sexual misconduct, according to VOX.
The truth of the matter is that the “we must boycott all movies associated with sexual abusers” mindset prevents people from enjoying a large number of masterpieces. The #MeToo movement has reshaped the way people think about art, focusing on the artist's personal life rather than the end product they have created. Yet in a strange irony, the same person who refuses to watch The Usual Suspects, due to Spacey’s involvement, will walk into New York’s Guggenheim Museum and admire Pablo Picasso’s work, ignoring the sexual harassment accusations made against the artist and focusing only on his masterpieces. Apparently, people choose to view movies in a different light than paintings or sculptures.
The actions of a single man should not define a movie’s perception. As opposed to a painting or sculpture, film productions are a collaborative work, often times with casts and crews of literally thousands of people. Refusing to watch movies like Pulp Fiction due to Weinstein’s involvement affects all the hard-working team behind the film, and would equate to a Democrat refusing to watch Home Alone 2 due to Donald Trump’s minuscule role in the movie.
While I believe the current trend of exposure is definitely a step in the right direction, the obsession with Hollywood stars’ personal lives has an overall negative effect on the industry. The latest revelations about an artist’s personal life should in no way affect the overall achievements of their previous films, especially when said artist was only a small part of a much bigger team. Not all people involved in a Weinstein production are sexual predators, so let’s not boycott any of his company’s old movies. Let’s not punish all people involved in a movie simply because one particular individual who worked on it is currently being exposed for his sexual misconduct. Let the legal process against these sexual predators run their course. Their reputations are already ruined, but their old movies’ perception and standing should not be affected. These monsters will probably never “work in this town again” anyways.
My fear is for this “boycott” movement to ultimately prevent a new generation from experiencing a lot of masterpieces. People charged with sexual misconduct should be punished through whatever the legal process sees fit. That being said, taking away the prestige, respect or even acceptance of a great movie due to a single person’s misdoing is something that, quite frankly, no film should ever have to endure.