When I first saw the preview for the Jennifer Lawrence/Chris Pratt movie, I was soooo excited! Two actors that haven’t let me down in SPACE! The premise looked awesome and the setting remarkable. I eagerly anticipated opening day so I could grab me some popcorn and let myself escape in their world for a couple hours.
Then I heard from a friend who had read a review that the movie wasn’t what we thought. The review had turned my sci-fi loving friend completely off the movie. I wasn’t sure what could possibly be so bad so I found a review she had read to see for myself.
The author of the article compared the plot to today’s rape culture, a topic that I find fight worthy. The actions of the Pratt character was compared to a rapist for what he did to the female character. Reading this, I too saw the connection to the recent headlines of rapist today getting little more than a slap on the wrist for the crime they committed. So then I was adamant that I was not going to spend my hard-earned money to see a movie that perpetuates the notion that men need to force themselves on a woman to make her realize that she loves him.
But then I talked to my sister who had just seen it. She didn’t see the movie as a reflection of our current rape culture at all. She said that other people can change the direction of your life, even for the worse, and it isn’t always rape. So I decided to actually see the movie and make my own opinion. What a concept, right?
As I watched the movie, part of me really wanted to hate the Pratt character, to vilify him for what he did. But I couldn’t. I understood why he did it though I didn’t agree with his decision. I think the biggest argument for the rape culture reference is the fact that his character doesn’t face any real consequences for his actions. He gets to be the hero at the end.
But I think getting so hung up on how Karma screwed up takes power away from Lawrence’s character. She got pissed, and rightfully so. What he did to her was wrong. He violated her, in a way, by totally derailing her future but that in no means equals the brutality that a rape survivor goes through. And she had the power at the end to punish him and she took the high road. He found a way to make it right with her and she made the decision to stay with him. I thought it was a sweet, hopeful ending that had me leaving the theater with a smile on my face. I prefer movies that affect me like that.
So many people were up in arms about how it should’ve ended differently but that’s life. You don’t always get the ending you want. That’s what I love about reading, watching movies, and writing. We get to witness the limits of the human experience. In my opinion, comparing this movie plot to the current rape culture is a bit much. Rape is such a serious crime that it shouldn’t be thrown around so liberally. And I don’t think that these two fine actors would sign up for a project that they felt glorified such a heinous aspect of our current culture.
So yeah, what he did was fucked up but it worked out in the end. What did you think of the movie?