- Mrs. Puffin
- 7 years ago
- Wedding: September 2013
My friend (who works as a rape recovery advocate) just posted this on facebook; I thought I’d share!
“PLEASE, PLEASE READ:
I recently witnessed a pre-screening of Rod Lurie’s film “Straw Dogs” and I was shocked at the depiction of the rape of the female protagonist, Amy, by her ex-boyfriend and his accomplice, due to the nature of the assault and the messages it sends.
Amy’s ex-boyfriend is portrayed as a strong, charming, muscular, Southern-gentleman of a man’s man, and this does not change after he first rapes and then passively watches his friend violently rape Amy. He’s still smoldering and accommodating, and, even when he meets his demise, it is unrelated to the fact that he is a rapist.
Likewise appalling is the way in which the filmmakers present Amy. After her husband suggests she ‘dress more modestly’ to prevent unwanted attention from the men, she rebelliously displays her chest to her future perpetrators. This serves to implicate Amy in her own assault, propagating the rape myth that “she was asking for it” and deserved it. While being raped by her ex-boyfriend, Amy’s reaction is presented as purposely ambiguous; it is unclear whether or not she enjoys it. This propagates another myth, that women have a secret “rape fantasy” and somehow WANT to have control taken away from them.
Finally, and perhaps the biggest issue is: the female protagonist of this large-scale, mainstream film, likely to bee seen by millions, DID NOT REPORT HER RAPE. What message does this send to women who have been assaulted or who may be in the future? It implants distinctive seeds of doubt, of self-blame, and guilt. In the example of Amy, they too may not report, and spend a lifetime fraught with these feelings instead of receiving support, love and help to aid in the path to healing and recovery.
Using an unreported rape as a plot device is appalling. Leaving machismo-riddled perpetrators un-reprimanded and unpunished as a plot device is inexcusable. Imbuing women not to report is horrific. This results in real, tangible evil in the lives of those who have or may suffer from sexual assault.
Please, do not support this film.”