The other night, I decided to sit down and watch a classic: Easy A. Now, I didn’t mean to watch it from the perspective of a social commentary, but I couldn’t help it when there were so many things to discuss in it, from slut-shaming to homophobia to using religion as a backbone for bigotry. The movie, if you forgot, is about a girl named Olive who accidentally started a rumor about herself that she lost her virginity and it spread around school which led everyone to thinking she was a slut. After this, she used it to let guys say whatever they want for money and ended up getting a reputation for herself.
Now, let’s unpack that in itself. There should be nothing wrong with a girl losing her virginity to begin with, and also it really is not anyone’s business what she does with her body. The fact that she was looked at differently over this by the entire school is problematic because for starters, it was a rumor, and even if it wasn’t they have no right in judging what she does in her private time. This rumor spread because of one girl who was proud of her devout Christianity. I have absolutely no issue with religion and believe religion is such a beautiful thing, unless it’s being used as an excuse to bring other people down. She judged Olive because of something she overheard; she wasn’t even a part of the conversation to begin with and felt the need to talk about her because Olive allegedly made a different choice than what she would have done. No one has the exact same morals, and no one deserves to be slut-shamed because of what they are doing or not doing with their body.
Moving on to homophobia. The first thing that comes to mind is when there was a prayer circle happening and someone said they needed to love everyone, even the sluts and gays, and the group basically disagreed and prayed for them. This rings negative bells in my head because people in the LGBTQ+ community do not need to be prayed for due to their sexuality. It’s who they are and who they should be praying for are those who are prejudiced against them. Also, a kid in the movie was so nervous about being openly gay at school that he pretended to have sex with Olive so it would stop going around. This is so deeply disturbing that a kid feels like such an outcast on something he cannot change and should be proud of that he has to physically pretend to do something else to get everyone off his back.
Overall, Easy A is a great and classic comedy, and it brings attention to some serious issues that are happening in high schools and in life in general today. I highly recommend looking at a movie through the lens of a commentary in the future because even if that’s not the surface level goal of the movie, I guarantee you can find some deep rooted discussions embedded in it.