I had heard about this earlier, but with the release of Exodus: Gods and Kings I think it is coming out in the news a bit more and that is the boycott of the movie over the more egregious whitewashing in the movie. It is also in the news because Ridley Scott apparently has been blasting critics who have been saying that they will boycott the film. He also has been talking about how the casting for the film was motivated by economics. All of these reasons really seem like copouts.Then recently I read an article on The Mary Sue that reviews the movie and apparently the whitewashing is overshadowed by how bad it is. Whitewashing is mentioned in various movies, but I wonder if the reason it is getting so much attention now is because of the current political climate in the United States. At the same time it could be one of many points to judge the movie upon.
I think boycotting something that you disagree with is a completely legitimate action, but for those that are boycotting this movie I would hope that they would do the same in other instances as well. I personally am disappointed in the whitewashing because I can think of some amazing actors who probably could have played the various parts in the movie who would have been at least more accurate. It would be nice if we could go with whoever is best for the part and embodies the character because I think then the color of their skin does not matter. Sadly, that does not seem to be how the world works now a days. At the same time unless we boycott every movie with whitewashing of a similar vein it comes across as very superficial and based on the current environment versus a real issue that should be discussed.
The big thing that we need to remember to do whether you boycott the movie or not is to keep the discussion going about the issue of whitewashing. Again there are a lot of diverse actors that could play a wide variety of parts, but there are certain parts that could benefit from a more accurate portrayal.
Of course adding fuel to the whole fire is Director Ridley Scott being kind of an ass. He apparently has decided that everyone boycotting the movie is stupid and that people would not have paid to see the movie starring a no name actor. These just make people angry and really come across as crap answers. I understand name recognition, but there are plenty of actors with enough name recognition who are not white men or women who could have filled the roles. The other option is that you just need one person with name recognition and then you can choose some lesser known actors to play the other parts, it is not going to ruin the movie. I also think that we do not give our audience credit. If you make a movie that has the awesome special effects, epic fight scenes, and the preview draws them in to the story or the characters you can get people to want to go to the movies. I know actor recognition is important, but it has to be an actor that I love and not just anyone. I like Christian Bale, but I do not know that I would see a movie just because he was in it. Also, they put some other big names into pretty minor roles, which does not fit the theory.
A Bad Movie
I have not seen the movie yet, but after reading the review on The Mary Sue I don’t think I want to. Of course, I have to admit I was not that thrilled about the movie in the first place. I don’t know why, but it just never pulled me in. Which is funny because the Exodus story is one of the more well known Biblical stories and has some pretty great moments. It has plagues, wrath of God, burning bush, parting of the red sea, etc. It is an epic story from the Bible, but somehow they do not make it look interesting. I have to say the other part is that Prince of Egypt was actually a great movie and told the story really well. This movie seems to lack some of the heart of the story. Even if you did it as a non-religious story, it is still a great story about slaves being freed. At the same time if you do take God out of Exodus that would most likely make a lot more people mad. The sad part is that this movie could have been good because it is a good story.
See The Movie or Not?
After everything I have heard I think I am going to save this movie for a rental. Between the whitewashing, the general lack of interest in the movie, and the really bad review, it just does not seem worth my time to go see. I think I would rather wait until it comes out on rental to watch it where I can be in the comfort of my own home instead of the quite uncomfortable local movie theatre.