Thursday, April 5, 2012

Harvey Weinstein is a hypocritical bully and a f***ing a**hole. Now that publicity has subsided, Weinstein to cut Bully down to a PG-13 after all.

When the manufactured outrage over the MPAA handing Bully an R-rating for its six F-bombs, I politely suggested that Weinstein should just do what Morgan Spurlock did with Super Size Me and cut and alternate, 'educational version' of the documentary so that it could be viewed in schools and other public places.  But over the last two months, Harvey Weinstein and his band of Karl Rove/Lee Atwater-ish bullies have ginned up the media, getting publicity-friendly movie stars and righteously indignant pundits to hem and howl at the MPAA because they had the gall not to give Weinstein's film preferential treatment.  After all, an R-rating was going to keep kids from seeing Bully in a theater!  LIE (any kid of any age can see an R-rated film with a parent/guardian over 18).  And NATO's statement to the Weinstein Company that releasing the film unrated would possibly cause theaters to treat it like an NC-17 film was EXACTLY like threatening to give the film an NC-17 as retaliation for raising a ruckus!  LIE.  If the MPAA didn't give in and give the film a PG-13, the film wouldn't reach the kids that it needed to reach!  LIE (DVDs, Blu-Ray, Video On Demand, Netflix... pick one!).  The film was so singularly awesome and important that it had the unimpeachable power to save kids' lives and that denying this film its rightful PG-13 was tantamount to murdering at-risk bullied youth.  Well, I haven't seen the film, but I'm guessing that's a LIE too.

So now, two months later, after the film is out in theaters (all five of them... what an impact THAT will make!) and no one cares anymore, Harvey Weinstein has admitted that all of his cries of moral supremacy and righteousness indignation was a smokescreen for free publicity after all.  Just as he was with The King's Speech, he no longer cares about the utterly immoral awarding of an R rating anymore.  NOW that the film is in theaters, The Hollywood Reporter has reported that he will in fact do what he damn-well should have done two months ago.  Yup, Weinstein is cutting Bully after all.  He is in fact creating an alternate version without the offending language which will allow the film to be re-rated PG-13 in time for its expansion and shown in schools and churches.  Pardon my french, but why the fuck didn't Harvey Weinstein just do that in the first place?  Because, then he couldn't fucking run around and scream about how the MPAA is condemning bullied kids to a premature death and thus trivialize an important issue just to garner free publicity for a fucking movie.

I generally avoid using too much profanity on this site because I know my family reads this, and it's always possible that professionals might stumble onto this site and I don't want to come off like a stereotypical foaming-at-the-mouth movie blogger.  But fucking hell, what an asshole...  And the worst part is the sheer number of seemingly intelligent people who fell for it, allowing legendary bully Harvey Weinstein to bully the MPAA with the help of various celebrities (Meryl Streep, Justin Beiber, Lady Gaga, Johnny Depp, etc) and theoretically unimpeachable bullied teens.  After all, if you don't think Bully deserved a PG-13 (despite violating one of the MPAA's few ironclad rules), then you are obviously on the side of the bullies.  Now that Weinstein has basically gone and done what was the logical course of action after all, will anyone step up and admit that they've been conned?  So fuck him and fuck his movie.  Well, it's not his movie and I'm sorry that director Lee Hirsch's presumably worthwhile expose of an important issue is now tainted by the showboating of its distributor.

The often prurient standards of the MPAA is something that absolutely merits discussion, but it's an issue more complicated than just saying "Hey, I'm the ONLY ONE EVER who has seen Kirby Dick's This Film Is Not Rated!"  Especially in a time where the would-be culture wars are making a comeback, having a private, non-government affiliated entity that can basically let viewers (read - parents) know what films contain what sort of potentially objectionable content is more important than ever, as it may be the best and last line of defense before we have local censorship boards (which the MPAA system was created to stamp out).  That they judge sex, especially dramatic sex and/or non-heterosexual sex in a manner harsher than violence is a problem.  That they allow more and more R-rated violence into PG-13 films is a problem.  That they are seemingly harsher on independent films than mainstream films is a problem.  That the organization has not quite changed with the times in regards to 'acceptable morality' is a problem.  But the solution was not to side with the tyrannical producer throwing a childish temper-tantrum because he didn't get special treatment from an allegedly impartial organization.

That Weinstein was so willing to 'do the right thing' so quickly after the indignation stopped mattering makes it all-too obvious that his moral outrage was a giant fraud and his use of bullied kids an epic bout of exploitation.  Once again the emperor had no clothes and once again few bothered to point it out.  Hopefully next time we'll be smarter.  

Scott Mendelson


Jose Cordova said...

Here here!

Alan Worsley said...

The profanity was deserved

Matthew Goodman said...

This made me die of laughter. Fuck Weinstein.

Bobandlonda said...

I hope that you are not turning people off to watching this movie, but I guess saying F*ck his movie is. I think you can be upset about what happened but for the families in the film who are real and put themselves out there to try and help others it is a slap in the face. These are just children, have some compassion for them. Celebrities backed this movie because they saw it and that it was relevant. I was just thinking that maybe you should see it before you dog it.


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