Fine, fine – you’ve got scary dinosaurs. Sure. Nice. Whatever. I’m sure the visual effects here are awesome – and may snag an Oscar bid. More importantly, you’ve got Chris Pratt getting just about anyone with a pulse all hot and bothered because… well, he’s Chris Pratt.
Oh. Right. The trailer… in an effort to keep this from becoming (more of) an ode to Chris Pratt, complete with semi-appropriate-for-work GIFs and pics, let’s talk about the implied, cringeworthy suggestion of archaic, binary-based views of gender.
Pratt, who plays some sort of dinosaur trainer, converses with a scientist played by Bryce Dallas Howard. He makes a sexual gesture, and she’s less than impressed. He goes on to chide her for it. Then it’s all genetically-modified dinosaurs and endangering park guests and whatnot.
Yes, trailers work toward a specific function – they often distort components of films to get bums into seats. So it’s possible that the trailer is a misrepresentation of how the film deals with gender. However, a recently-released clip from Jurassic World that comes from the same scene showcases the full context, which still carries the “man, horny; woman unwilling to sleep with him, prude” connotation. Joss Whedon famously addressed what he regarded as sexism in the clip.
The outlook is bleak, but hopefully there’s some subversion here. Hopefully.
On a related note, is it bad that I’m looking at Pratt and Howard’s “dynamic” solely in terms of hair right now? I was kidding, but as I type this out, I’m noticing that Pratt’s hair – including his sort-of p*rnstache – comes across as natural, while the presentation of Howard’s hair is very controlled. Their clothing also reflects a similar, binary-based contrast of authentic and artificial – male as natural/authentic, female as different/gendered.
But most importantly…
B.D. Wong! OK, so he’s in this trailer for about three seconds, and it looks he’s playing the smartest one in the room – which he did so wonderfully on Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. So, we’ve kind of seen it before, but… B.D. Wong!
Long story short, I’m expecting to be disappointed with the gender representation, though I’m still curious about it. And I’d find it difficult to turn down the opportunity to see Chris Pratt and B.D. Wong! on the big screen. I’m also ready for Bryce Dallas Howard to take off.
Colin Trevorrow helms Jurassic World, which hits theaters in the United States on June 12.