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Author Topic: Judd Apatow and the Art of White Masculinity: Pineapple Express
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Babbler # 8938

posted 23 August 2008 04:48 AM      Profile for bigcitygal     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Judd Apatow and the Art of White Masculinity: Pineapple Express reviewed.

I came across this review of the movie Pineapple Express and wanted to start a discussion on themes raised in the review, themes in Apatow's movies in general, and/or the themes presented. I haven't seen any of these movies, and would be very interested in hearing critical / thoughtful views from babblers who have.

The reviewer uses the term "homosociality" which I think he defines quite clearly, for anyone unfamiliar with the term. He also talks about the new t.v. series "Mad Men" which was briefly discussed on babble. I saw one episode and really didn't like it.


So I finally saw Pineapple Express this weekend and throughout the whole movie the men around me were constantly expressing how “fucking gay” the movie was. I left there thinking about the two very different displays of masculinity I had just witnessed in the movie theater. The men in the audience, who were mostly young men of color in their late-teens/early-twenties, were attempting to (re)affirm their masculinity through homophobic and sexist comments in response to the perceived lack of masculinity they saw on the screen. On the screen however the cast of Pineapple Express (most of whom are white men with the exception of Craig Robinson) were celebrating their homosocial (but not homosexual) affection for each other and their outsider status as members of the informal economy.


I don’t think Apatow’s films say anything about sexuality that is specifically homosexual or homophobic, but I do think his films rely on homosociality to demonstrate the ways in which white masculinity has been “wounded” by the feminist, gay, and civil rights movements. In Apatow’s movies we see an entire generation of white men who rely on each other for a sense of validation and understanding, a generation of men who in many ways by refusing to grow-up are able to avoid facing the reality of changing power structures in American society.


What is interesting is that in Apatow movies arrested development is presented as the solution to dealing with the frustration of being a “schlub.” People of color, women and gays (particularly white gay men) have more visibility, if not power, in contemporary society – the question that Apatow’s character are trying to work out is “where does this leave me?”

Judd Apatow discussed on Racialicious

From: It's difficult to work in a group when you're omnipotent - Q | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged
Papal Bull
Babbler # 7050

posted 23 August 2008 08:35 AM      Profile for Papal Bull   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The comment by KXB is actually quite interesting in its observation of the use of stereotyping of different people into certain roles, and showing the dominant white-christian nature of hollywood's leading actors.

However, I do have a serious question to ask as a blue-collar born white male. Indeed, with the changing structure of society, where does that leave us white dudes?

From: Vatican's best darned ranch | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged

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