Anyway back to the topic at hand. I’m not a big fan of the movie Pretty Woman. It might have something to do with the fact that I was only 7 when the movie came out in 1990 (I did some actual research) and therefore didn’t catch any of the subtle nuisances of the movie, that and I was too young to give a damn about the romantic notions of love. Other movies that I’ve been told that I should appreciate but don’t: “Ghandi”, “Sleepless in Seattle” and “Gone with the Wind.”
As I mentioned earlier Pretty Woman romanticises the world’s oldest profession. I fear that little girls watching Pretty Woman might aspire to be nothing more than one of those Lansdowne Road working girl (which I had the unfortunate pleasure of meeting). Hoping that on one cold night a limousine encasing a rich, educated, handsome gentleman will pull up and simply as for directions. They are more likely to accosted by a married middle aged guy driving a 1997 Ford Escort who would be expecting just a little more than directions from her. He’s also likely to give her a little more than just cash, something that will leave a burning sensation every time she urinates. Girls should be well aware of the fact that being a hooker is a hard job and there are quite a few pricks out there.
Reason two is it like fairytales it perpetuates the like that women actually require a man to save them from their miserable existence. And just like some fairytales it should be handed out with a warning. No seriously. Let’s look at how sexist the following fairytales are: Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Cinderella, Rapunzel and Red Riding Hood.
A pretty girl (aren’t they all) finds a spindle in an attic and decides to spin. Say what? How many modern women do you know what actually voluntarily knit or sew for fun? It gets worse. She pricks her finger and remains comatose until some guy rescues her. Summary: Pretty girl with no intentions other than being a good wife finds herself in a hapless situation and needs a RICH guy to save her sorry ass.
Pretty girl (noticing a trend?) is hated by an older vain woman who is fearful of being replaced by a younger model. Snow white escapes woman’s clutches by cooking and cleaning for seven short men. (Once again woman is placed in a domesticated role). Snow white eventually succumbs to eating a poison apple and chokes. And guess who helps Snow white out of this pickle. A RICH man does!
This one really gets to me. Cindy is treated as a slave by her stepmother and stepsisters. But she never complains. The only time Cindy gets upset is when she’s not allowed to go to the ball. What the fuck? Is this girl shallow or what? You’re forced to do manual labour each day but the thing that really gets you is that you can’t play dress up? Cindy eventually gets her way and dances with prince but runs out at 12 before he even gets her number. The only way for the Prince will find Cindy is by asking every maiden in the village to try on a glass slipper. (And to this very day women still force their feet into shoes that will promise to cut off all feeling, when they go out clubbing). Man, I hope Cindy was wearing a mask when she was at the ball otherwise I really need someone to explain to me why the Prince was incapable of identifying Cindy without the assistance of the slipper.
Girl with long hair is trapped in a tower. She lets down her hair so that her boyfriend can come up for some nookie. Boyfriend is like all modern men. He realises that he’s onto a good thing. He gets the milk for free and doesn’t have to deal with any commitment issues – Rapunzel is after all trapped in her Ivory Tower. He therefore makes absolutely no plans to rescue her. The witch who had Rapunzel incarcerated finds out when she realises that Rapunzel is preggies. (What you didn’t read the Grimm’s fairytale version?) Witch cuts Rapunzel’s hair, tricks boyfriend into climbing up the tower, boyfriend is shocked to find its not his concubine and jumps out of the tower, blinding himself forever. Oh wait this one breaks the mould – hot rich guy not there to save her. Agh, well I enjoyed imparting the fact that a jackass boyfriend got his just desserts.
Red Riding Hood
I’m not sure if this one was pretty but she sure was stupid. She couldn’t even tell the difference between a wolf and her grandmother. She too was rescued by a man.