Carol Platt Liebau: The Coarsening Culture

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The Coarsening Culture

This is a sad little reminder of how coarse US culture has become -- and the kind of abuse heaped on those who dare to object to it.

Apparently, film critic Joel Siegel spoke out and then left a critic's screening of "Clerks II," forty minutes into the film. Siegel's abrupt departure was occasioned by a scene in which, as the linked article puts it, the clerks "graphically discuss hiring a woman to perform sexual favors on a donkey." (emphasis added).

Good for Siegel. Not too surprisingly, he's come under attack from the film's creator -- and the mentality behind this fine cinematic fare is evident from his vulgar, expletive-laced tirade.

This is the kind of person who's being paid to entertain America's teens -- and what a perspective on sex, relationships and women he's offering! What's even worse is that all the other film critics were willing to sit still to watch and listen to this garbage -- all the while knowing that it was going to be marketed to young people all across the United States.



Blogger amber said...

WOW! I'm stunned he would draw similarities between not liking goofy puns and what he was showing on film. This may be what the movie industry is heading towards, but it just shows how out of touch they are. Movies like this are one of the reasons people have slowed down their attendance. My husband and his fellow deployed buddies all have 2 movie nights a week in Iraq. There are rules, #1 no nudity. These are their rules, not the military. It is unfortunate Hollywood continues to support these people.

1:04 PM  
Blogger JillMartin said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1:34 PM  
Blogger Marshall Art said...

Hey, it's Hollywood. They know what's best for us and our kids. How dare a critic criticize! The gall of that man feeling that 45 minutes of his life was wasted watching crap. What's this world coming to when hard working film makers can't put on film any deviant and decadent acts or suggestions of such acts?

9:26 PM  
Blogger COPioneer said...

Ebert will give it a thumb up.

7:46 AM  
Blogger Clark Clifford said...

If my mind serves me correctly, there was an underground culture of pornography, both soft and hard, that literally advanced the technology of the home projector. "Stag" films were often cobbled together loops of such acts as the actors in "Clerks II" were discussing were widely available in the new suburbs of the 1950s. card parties and key parties also were prevalent.

What Hollywood has come to understand is not that America has become immoral or amoral since the "golden age" of family wholesomness of the early post WW2 era, but that they have becvome more open in their dealings with issues.

Less hypocritical.

Sex, divorce, money, religion, and politics are all topics that parents discuss with their children now not issues to be locked in a box and tagged with the word "dirty."

In the most free land on Terra no child should be exposed to language or images that warp minds. However, isn't the defence of those children against these things the job of their parents and not of some "moralizing" force that seeks to succor itself in the quiet pursuit of its own lusts?

Personally, I would have a hard time trusting those who are in league with Ralph Reed, Jack Abramoff, or Kenneth Lay equally as those who with disregard expose their children to pornography or the suggestion of it as appears in Kevin Smith's film.

The "decline" is not a cancer on Hollywood much of it is the "front" being put on by so many average Americans.

2:13 PM  
Blogger JillMartin said...

Laura Bush sets a fine example

7:08 PM  
Blogger Dittohead said...

White House Correspondents' Dinner 2005

No mention of the US troops being killed in Iraq but the first Lady, Laura Bush was a hit with her horse jerk-off joke. Such a greenhorn was George, she explained, "he tried to milk the horse. What's more--it was a male horse."

This must be Texas style high class.

And George says at the G8, "They better stop that sh*t."

8:05 PM  
Blogger JillMartin said...

Can anyone still condemn the Dixie Chicks for being embarassed, given Laura's trailer park humor and George's table manners and profanity?

8:17 PM  
Blogger Alan Kellogg said...

We've always been raunchy around friends. More so when we're young and plastered. It should be noted that people talk about certain things because they are disturbing. Equine fellatio for one. If we didn't find such things shocking, we wouldn't joke about them.

Where movies are concerned, we really should keep in mind the fact that the great majority of films have always been crap. Even when the Hays Office was in its glory days. THe difference is, back then movies had no real competition. No TV, no Internet, no videos in any format. Theater, opera, and vaudville had their place, and then there was radio. But movies were it when it came to that type of entertainment.

Now the entertainment pie is being divided between more people, so naturally the old guy is having to make do with less.

That said, the cinema industry has done a piss poor job of adapting to the new circumstances. Movie producers have adjusted right well, what with tape and DVDs, it's the movie houses that have not made the changes necessary to stay alive. Expect a ton of theaters to go under in the next decade.

8:46 PM  

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