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The Prehistoric Sexism Of "Jurassic World"

What happened to "Woman inherits the earth?"

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Jurassic World is a fine movie. A fun movie! But when filmmakers are doing so much better (see: Mad Max: Fury Road, Spy), this feels like a distracting step back.

1. Bryce Dallas Howard's Frigid Businesslady is as one-dimensional as characters come.


Everything about her screams "uptight career woman" and yet she's not even capable at her job. Frigid Businesslady wears a crisp linen skirt suit with stilettos when her job ostensibly requires her to be walking through mud, helicoptering above an island, and inspecting dinosaur pens. Dressing like she's working for Miranda Priestly isn't "empowering," it's dumb.

2. Her character's biggest obstacle is being too frigid for a family.


Frigid Businesslady is too busy dressing impractically for her job to spend any time with her nephews or even know their ages. She's the type of woman who brings an itinerary to a first date. Her sister chides her about having kids of her own, but Frigid Businesslady knows she's not ready to be maternal.

3. Swarthy Velociraptorman teaches her how to respect dinosaurs, and also, how to love.


Swarthy Velociraptorman is the one who says the thesis of the movie, several times - something like, "they're dinosaurs, and they're amazing creatures and you need to respect them and also hubris and corporations are bad."

He's the only one who seems to know that these living things with heart beats are alive and they're capable of eating people. Everyone else is too concerned with the Bottom Line and Money and insensible footwear.

Good thing Swarthy Velociraptorman is there to save the day.

4. Even when Frigid Businesslady does something cool, her nephews still prefer Swarthy Velociraptorman.


"Can we stick with you?" they ask, panting, after their aunt pulled them from the jagged maw of a superman dinosaur.

"You are never leaving my side," Frigid Businesslady responded, so proud that she finally understands what being a woman means.

"No - HIM," one of the little shits say. "We want to stay with him!"

5. Frigid Businesslady wears heels the entire time. Even when she's running from dinosaurs.


Wearing an all-white ensemble and stilleto pumps is impractical enough if your job requires traipsing around a tropical island. Not taking those shoes off as you LITERALLY SPRINT FOR YOUR LIFE FROM GIANT DINOSAURS is some fucked up bullshit.

You'd think at one point, on set, Bryce Dallas Howard would have raised her hand and let the director know that that's not something any reasonable non-automaton woman would do.

6. Her "character development" is strictly external.


We know she means business when she ties her linen shirt around her waist, and her hair goes from a severe straight bob to impossibly perfect waves. Thanks for those A+ visual cues.

7. She ends up smooching and leaving the island with Swarthy Velociraptorman, for no good reason.


It's established that the two main characters went on a date and didn't hit it off. But when a girl's life is in danger, there's nothing that turns her on more than an alpha who can take town a super t-rex. Now Frigid Businesslady learned not to be so frigid and she can finally earn the ultimate prize: a man.

8. Laura Dern was so much more awesome by comparison.


Laura Dern played an actual scientist, and the intellectual equal of her male peers. She could get in the field and diagnose some triceratops shit, no problem. Why do I feel like if we asked Frigid Businesslady to do that, she'd go Cher Horowtiz on us?

9. The subtext about the destructiveness of male hubris is gone.


The original Jurassic Park had a surprisingly feminist undercurrent: it was the men - bumbling, over-ambitious, greedy - who were blind to the female dinosaur's ability to uh, find, uh, a way.

Jurassic World is about how companies shouldn't keep trying to make the next bigger, better, more spectacular thing, which seems a bit ironic.

10. For a movie ostensibly against the monster of capitalism, there sure is a lot of product placement.


Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville, Starbucks, Pandora Jewelry, Samsung, Verizon Wireless, Beats by Dre, eBay.... and those are just the ones I remember off the top of my head.

11. Even with the side characters in the IT room, the man is the brave, funny one who's aware of what's going on.


Jake Johnson plays the Fan Stand-in who loves dinosaurs and sees the magic like a child. He's the one who stays to help fix things from the inside even after the park is evacuated and even though it's kind of funny when he tries to kiss his female colleague and she refuses (she has a boyfriend), it's also kind of sad that having a boyfriend is the only personality trait they give her character.

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