What To Expect When You're Expecting Too Much From A Movie

Illustration for article titled What To Expect When You're Expecting Too Much From A Movie

Yesterday, hackles were raised after one of us responded to all the hate being directed at the film "Knocked Up" with a sort of love-letter to the film. However, in the interest of being fair and balanced (like Roger Ailes!) we've decided to present a dissenting opinion on the film, which, if all the emails and comments we've been getting reflect an accurate representation of contemporary female reality (which of course they do!) has divided American women in a way only previously seen by, uhm, the whole Is-Zach-Braff-hot question. (Answer: No.) Herewith, Slut Machine's take on the weekend's second biggest box-office champion.


I'm a really big Judd Apatow and Seth Rogen fan. Freaks and Geeks and 40 Year Old Virgin resonated with me so much because of their "funny 'cause it's true" brand of quirky comedy. So I was super psyched for Knocked Up, thinking that Apatow and Rogen had again created something that would lend itself well to repeat viewing. WRONG! Yeah, there were some laughs in there, but the movie was both unbelievably painful and too fucking long. Kind of like labor! At times, I watched my date instead of the movie, because watching him sleep was actually more entertaining than looking at the screen. But maybe that's just 'cause he looked really cute.

And speaking of cute: Yeah, actor Seth Rogen (Ben) isn't bad. In fact, he's not nearly as fat or ugly as the movie wants you to believe. But there was way too much suspension of disbelief required in the film to even make him bearable. For one: Alison (Katherine Heigl) was just promoted to an on-air job at E! but she can't afford to live anywhere but her sister's guest house? And then shortly after the promotion, she discovers she's pregnant and decides to keep the baby even though it might jeopardize her new career when she's already seemingly in financial peril? There was absolutely no logic behind that decision making process. And I'd like someone to show me even one of those L.A. entertainment news "journalist", ladder-climbing whores who behave anything like this woman. In reality, she wouldn't have enough fat on her body to even menstruate, let alone get pregnant. (And OK, I totally got it that they didn't use protection. It was stupid but whatever, we've all been there. And Alison didn't notice? If you can't feel a hot load shooting up in you and then oozing out later, you're probably not gonna need that epidural because your vagina has no feeling anyway.)

And how bullshit is it that Ben, the dude her knocked her up, is such a giant moron that he can't even turn a profit through his adult entertainment web site? Any fuckhead with a PayPal account can make money peddling smut that way. The internet + porno = ATM machine. If you can't do that then you really shouldn't be raising babies. And yes, I understand why Alison thought that Ben was a sweet guy or whatever, but come on. I don't consider a guy's personality when I consider whether or not to abort a pregnancy. In fact, I don't consider the guy at all. I consider myself. Not just what I have to lose, but what I don't have to give. But it's fine, whatever, it was the premise of the movie. It just really fucking bothered me that the word "abortion" was never uttered in the film, except for when Ben's fat friend Jonah (who looks eerily like Brett Ratner) referred to it as "schmamortion". I was also really bothered when my mother told me that in the homily during mass this weekend, her priest was so enthusiastic about how wonderfully pro-life this movie is. The same way that right-wing zealots are irrationally afraid that Will & Grace will make people gay, I'm irrationally afraid that this movie will make bad parents out of people who would've otherwise gone to Planned Parenthood for a schmamortion.

Anyway, it was a lot easier to believe that Ben wanted to keep the baby. He was a 23-year-old loser with nothing going for him. This attractive, employed woman was the best thing to ever happen to him. And of course a stoner would think it was a good idea to raise a baby. One time I got stoned and thought it would be a good idea to develop a product of frozen salsa ice pops that I'd call Salsacles. But pot smoking aside, I found that I related to Ben's group of dudes a million times more than any of the women in the movie. And it's not because the dudes were on a permanent chill session, or because they fart edon each other's pillows (although, I am one to entertain myself by searching "fart" on YouTube). I think it's because they were actually well-developed characters, written as humans whereas the women were written as psycho harpy fembots who complained about anything and everything for no apparent reason. And that was my main problem with this film: Nothing that the women did made sense, which simply played into the stereotype that women don't base their decisions on logic or reason, but on whims and fancies. And to me, that's not funny because it's not true. Fishing for laughs through jokes based on the hormonal irrationality of women is about as lazy as say, an unemployed stoner. And frankly, I find that way more offensive and disgusting than a tight shot of a baby's head crowning in a vagina.

Earlier: Didn't Like Knocked Up? Screw You.
Related: What Knocked Up Gets Wrong About Women [Slate]



Oh dearie me... Ok, so I suppose I get the need for fair and balanced (although shouldn't this blog be about your opinions, however bitchy and contrary, not everyone else's?), but why on earth would you pick the absolute worst person to provide the balance?!

Setting aside my personal feelings about SlutMachine as a writer/contributor to blogland discourse, she is about as likely to appreciate and identify with the conundrum facing the film's heroine as a Russian pro-hockey player. I have no doubt that Ms. Machine would be running for the wire hangers at the first hint of a pregnancy and thank god for that, I say! I can hardly think of anyone less equipped to have a child than a woman whose only (admitted) passions in life appear to be cock, coke, blow and booze (not that there's anything wrong with that). But it is thoroughly normal and natural for a woman in her late twenties to decide to keep a baby.

By the by, the film makes it abundantly clear that the choice is not at all easy and it not only offers the idea of abortion, but such idea actually comes from the woman's immaculate mother!

And as for the claims that the depiction of the women in the film is unfair/mysoginistic/narrow/bla bla... Give me a freakin' break! Of COURSE there are women just like the neurotic, controlling Debbie. And as for the main characters, it would be ludicrous to say that the man is the model of rationality and logic, while the woman is a hormonal harpy. In fact, Heigl's character is by far the more rational, normal and logical one - it's Rogen's character who ends up looking like a dumb kid.

Deciding to keep a child, even at the risk to one's career and future, is not a whim. It's a difficult decision, but one that most women choose to make. Not because of god or some outdated notion of morality, but because it's what they want. Imagine that: some crazy bitches would actually choose diapers and feedings to blowing rails off some dude's wang. Choice is a funny thing, ain't it?...