Nina Bahadur at Huffpoop:
Wolf-whistles, “hey baby” and “keep smiling honey!” are the types of things you’d expect to hear directed at a woman walking down the street. But what would the world look like if gender roles were reversed? A new short film seeks to answer that question — and the result is chilling.
“Oppressed Majority,” a short film by French actress and director Éléonore Pourriat, depicts a world where women and men have switched places.
In it the male protagonist takes his son to daycare, encountering sexist remarks and catcalls along the way. He’s cornered and sexually assaulted by a group of aggressive young women in broad daylight, intimidated by the police and slut-shamed by his partner. Women run shirtless through the streets, pee in public spaces and objectify male employees and passersby.
“I dress the way I want,” the main character tells his wife, who criticizes his “provocative” choice of over-the-knee shorts and revealing flip-flops. Her response? “Don’t you dare complain, then!”
Other gender swap videos, like the “Flip Side” series by Jay Diaz, take a more humorous look at male and female roles in society. What makes Pourriat’s video so powerful is that it addresses the very serious topics of assault and victim-blaming — something both men and women experience.
Anyone watching this short film will be struck at how “wrong” it all seems. So why do we stand for it in everyday life?
To answer that final question: “We don’t.”
This movie is bad feminist propaganda. Yes, sexism, sexual harassment and sexual assault really do exist. There should be a zero tolerance policy for all of them.
But not all men are rapists or rapist enablers. Not all men sexually harass women. Not all men are sexist pigs. Not all women are victims. The characters in the movie are caricatures based on stereotypes.
The guys who are a problem will not change because of this video. The guys who aren’t a problem don’t need to change. This movie isn’t intended for either one of those two groups. What this movie is intended to do is convince women that men are predators and women are prey.
The worst part is the ending. It shows the man being victimized despite all his efforts to assert himself. What kind of message is that sending?
Meanwhile, the worst misogynists are progressive men.