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Selznick International Pictures

I have a confession to make. My favorite guilty pleasure movie is Fatal Attraction. For those of you who haven’t seen it, the film’s about a successful married man who has it all but then has an affair with a femme fatale (with a career) who descends further and further into madness after he rebuffs her. It came out in 1987 and set the feminist agenda back a bit, so that’s why it’s my guilty pleasure as opposed to a not-guilty one. But that’s not even my biggest issue with the movie.

My biggest issue is that Michael Douglas’s character Dan is seriously not worth all the hype he gets from both his wife and his mistress. He can be funny at times and charming at others, but other than that he’s fairly boring and stale (plus he’s not attractive if I’m being honest, especially compared to the two female leads). Why does Alex Forest--the mistress--lose her grip on reality for him? Why does his wife stay with him even after he’s cheated? They’re in New York City, after all, filled with more interesting (and visually pleasing) men, so why is he the center of this film? What’s the point? Alex isn’t after his money or success; if anything she’s after the stable life he has with his family, but how does that make Dan special? The movie doesn’t focus enough on Alex to answer any of these questions, so I’m left in the dark about the answers. She’s a complex character but the film doesn’t give her enough credit.

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Another film that has a similar issue is You Get Me, which is basically Fatal Attraction but with high-schoolers and filmed thirty years later. Admittedly I haven’t seen this one, but I’ve watched the trailer a few times and I’ve read up on the plot. The leading male in that one isn’t attractive either, and from what I’m led to believe, uninteresting and not unique. 

So I guess the biggest question I’m asking is: Does Hollywood genuinely think women all want the boring average guy? (Fun fact: We don’t). There’s not enough movies out there with multidimensional females falling for multidimensional males--it seems to always be one-sided, with one person serving as the complex character and the other not doing so, and what does that say in the long run? If Hollywood wants to be authentic, they need to write interesting characters--both compelling females and compelling males that the compelling females can justifiably have love for. But that’s just my two cents.

Hey there! I'm a Creative Writing major/aspiring scriptwriter from outside of Boston. I love to write, travel, listen to music, go to concerts, and nap. I still don't know what my spirit animal is.
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