Hapless men and nagging women: The seven sexist film tropes that infuriate women

Actually, not all women do care more about getting a man than everything else

Rachel Hosie@rachel_hosie
Wednesday 21 December 2016 14:21
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Despite huge progress being made in recent years (thank you, Frozen) gender stereotypes and sexist tropes are still played out in a lot of films.

But people are tired of seeing the same characters and storylines over and over again that reinforce sexist views.

In a new discussion on Reddit, women have been sharing the sexist tropes they’re most sick of, and the main gripe is that nearly every female lead character has a romance plot, whereas male leads don’t.

Similarly, many people are tired of the storyline of a career-focussed businesswoman learning “the hard way that family and love is more important,” before quitting her job to get married or raise a child.

And it’s not just storylines but of course appearances where clichéd ideas of women prevail: “I friggin’ loathe it when women in action movies are wearing heels and tight, immobile leather and their hair is in perfect bouncy beach waves.

“Ain't nobody going into battle without a ponytail and practical footwear!” wrote one woman, perhaps with this year’s Suicide Squad in mind.

The classic “ugly guy gets hot girl” plot has been the main storyline in more films than one could count, but it seems people are fed up with the idea: “Beautiful women are partnered with Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Seth Rogen or someone who'd never have a chance with them in real life. You never see the opposite,” wrote one woman.

Many agreed that they wanted a film “where an ugly woman is paired with Ryan Gosling, Michael Fassbender or Chris Hemsworth, where it's just accepted and not a major plot point.”

Some people revealed that they know “plenty of ugly guys with hot girlfriends in real life,” but added that the problem is that films portray the less attractive men as awkward, boring and uncool whereas “the girls are hot and perfect”, which isn’t usually the case.

And another unrealistic couple expectation for a lot of people is the all too common pairing of a man with a significantly younger woman. “This drives me nuts,” said one woman, adding that 26-year-old Jennifer Lawrence’s recent movie pairs have been Chris Pratt (37), Bradley Cooper (41), Christian Bale (42), and Michael Fassbender (39).

Whilst some stereotypes reflect better on men than women, some do no favours for either gender, such as the idea of a “dumb”, useless, hapless father, married to his nagging, smarter and humourless wife.

“It’s revolting,” wrote one woman. And another added “I'm SO OVER the portrayal that men are morons.”

Because not all men are morons and not all women do nag, and we want to see that on screen.

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