THINK LIKE A MAN (2012)

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Elizabeth

Why? Why do movies like Think LIke A Man exist? I want to say it’s all Tyler Perry’s fault, or maybe even Steve Harvey’s fault, in this case, but it’s not, not completely at least.

Have you ever seen Adam’s Rib? It’s a romantic comedy with a battle of the sexes theme, in which the main actor and actress duke it out over who’s smarter, more capable, and better. Also, it stars Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy and was made in 1949. Yet, miraculously, it’s still somehow less anti-feminist than Think Like A Man. How can this be? How can a movie make over $99 million at the box office in 2012, and include jokes like calling a little boy who plays violin gay and calling the very feminine Taraji P. Henson a man because she provides for herself? It’s because men and women are fed the same rhetoric now as they were 64 years ago: men are capable and women are incapable. It’s as simple as that. All women want is to get married. All men want is to get laid. In the words of the great author Steve Harvey, it’s “In men’s DNA to be the provider.” Yes, I guess that’s true. I guess that’s why men are known for staying behind and taking care of their children while women cheat on their men. Right.

Think Like A Man desperately tries to categorize everyone and every gender in an age when that is becoming less important. But because of bullshit like this, you have characters like Lauren (Taraji P. Henson), known in the movie as, “the Woman Who Is Her Own Man,” Candace (Regina Hall), known in the movie as, “The Single Mom,” Zeke (Romany Malco), known in the movie as “The Player,” and Kristen (Gabrielle Union), known in the movie as, “The Girl Who Wants A Ring,” among many (many many) others. The characters are labeled for us in the beginning, to set up this world in which everyone has one character trait and it just so happens to be one that needs to be fixed by a corresponding member of the opposite sex. This is so unrealistic, the characters are constantly contradicting themselves in maddening ways, like when Kristen wants a more grown up life, so she throws out all of her boyfriend’s stuff. Yes, on the one hand, his stuff contains dirty furniture and action figures. But on the other hand, he’s a person and is in the relationship and Kristen throwing everything away without asking is even more childish then the oft-lamented collecting of action figures. I feel like this would something a more intelligent, 30-something man or woman would pick up on, but not in Think Like A Man.

So, in a way, how does one think like a man? Apparently, it’s by choosing one characteristic about a person, defining that person entirely based on that one characteristic, and then setting out to change that one characteristic. Fabulous.

Christopher

I have lived my life never really thinking like a man so I am SO happy Think Like A Man finally did that for me! But seriously, anyone who watches this movie in any seriousness is completely insane. The best part was . . . well all of it an none of it, definitely a must-see. The other really weird thing was how many jabs at Tyler Perry this movie had. I guess it thought it was better than a TP film? Unfortunately they didn’t realize it was exactly the same, maybe even more sexist, racist, and whatever else you could possibly throw in. Easily one of the grossest movies we have ever seen.

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WHEN HARRY MET SALLY . . . (1989) – SUPER SPECIAL 100TH POST!

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Christopher

This was pretty great. A friend of mine for San Antonio, Tommy, used to say that Seinfeld would not exist without this movie. I can completely see it. This movie was so dry and funny I’m embarrassed it took me so long to see it. I think this is a pretty great way to finally meet the person you’ll marry, later in life with a better understanding of who you are.

Elizabeth

This is our 100th post, and I wanted it to be about When Harry Met Sally. It’s a movie we’ve been meaning to watch for a while (I’d seen it, Chris hadn’t), and it’s good and funny and romantic and we’re all those things, too . . . so, it worked out!

But I really do love this movie. I don’t think it’s all that easy to find a romantic comedy that is sweet and pleasant but still isn’t afraid to use the word “fuck.” And while the characters have quirks I wouldn’t call either of them quirky, or even neurotic (reading the last page of a book first or being particular when ordering a restaurant doesn’t make you neurotic in my book). I’m not saying Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal are playing complete average Joes in this, but they’re really relatable. I’m also always struck by how really beautiful Meg Ryan is here. I think she’s sort of weird looking now, I guess from plastic surgery, which is sad. And though they’re not in it a ton, I think it’s worth mentioning how great of a supporting cast Carrie Fisher and Bruno Kirby make here.

But anyway, usually only sad or very beautiful things make me cry in movies, but the end of When Harry Met Sally makes me tear up. The line, “When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible,” is, honestly, one of the best lines in any movie, ever, I think. Because it’s really so true, and so sweet and just so great. I also think this movie highlights the fact that you might meet someone great in college and not even know it, until years later when you meet again, something that Chris and I both know quite well.