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A day before Mad Max: Fury Road releases, Aaron Clarey, author of Mad Max: Feminist Road comes clear about what he meant by his comments. Since his May 11 article telling readers why not to watch the movie went viral, Clarey has been called a Men’s Right Activist (MRA), a misogynist and anti-feminist by various publications. Angered and feeling disenchanted with the media, Clarey finally posted a video today responding to the “Feminist Road” drama.
In the four-minute video Clarey states his affiliations and credentials. He is an economist, blogger, author, podcaster and vlogger, but not a member of the MRA. He has written about men’s issues and has also written and spoken previously about supporting feminism. He said that he had no idea that the piece would go viral and tried to put his article in context.
In his original post, Clarey said that his “Spidey senses” started tingling after he noticed that Charlize Theron was featured very prominently in the trailers while Mad Max just had cameo appearances. He also said the Theron’s character dominated the trailers, got more dialogs and ordered Tom Hardy, who plays Mad Max, around.
“Nobody barks orders to Mad Max,” wrote Clarey and then he realized that Mad Max was not a movie meant for men, but a piece of feminist propaganda “posing as a guy flick.” He called the movie an intrinsic part of American culture and said that men are being tricked into watching the movie franchise where Hollywood directors are force feeding feminist theories to the viewers and basically destroying the culture.
People on Twitter started going crazy, referring to him as “the MRA” who called Mad Max American should know that the original film is Australian. In today’s video, Clarey said that he knows that it is an Australian movie and it has a multi-national cast but it aired in the U.S. too making it a part of American culture. He gives an example how a part of Star Wars was shot in Tunisia and asks viewers whether that made it part of the Tunisian culture. He also says that Mad Max is now shot in Africa, and asks if that makes it any less a part of American culture.
Many websites went crazy. HitFix, an entertainment news website wrote that he belonged to a subset of men who were afraid of women being treated like people. The Independent called him an MRA member who was crying over Hollywood’s attempts to “undermine traditional masculinity.” The Huffington Post called him out on being unaware of how poorly Hollywood treats women.
Clarey said that he did not “hate women” and has actually come to their defense many times in his various videos and articles. In a blog post titled A “PhD in Manosphere Studies” on his Captain Capitalism blog, Clarey wrote that traits are something people are born with and he does not let gender and his race define himself. In another blog post titled Why Men (and Women) Hate Feminism, he said that it was the biological differences between men and women that made them great. Women wanting to be treated the same as men is ludicrous as women do not like “girly men” and men do not like “manly women,” according to Clarey.
The whole point of calling the boycott, according to Clarey was because there are a group of people who are sick and tired of the proselytizing and just wanted to watch a guy flick. The fact that they got Even Ensler, author of The Vagina Monologues as a consultant for the film and Theron called it a feminist film, raised a red flag for him. He said that people just wanted a straight up Mad Max movie, replete with everything they have come to expect from the franchise, but instead they will end up getting shortchanged as what they will get is a political lecture about feminism.
Despite all the attention and his boycott calls, Clarey did say that he would go and watch the movie as he likes the plot. He liked the music score, the script, the fighting and all the explosions. He also asked viewers of the video to go watch the movie and then reach their own consensus. Meanwhile, the movie has gotten mostly positive reviews at the Cannes Film Festival.
By Anugya Chitransh
Return of Kings: Why You Should Not Go See “Mad Max: Feminist Road”
HitFix: Misogynists are boycotting feminist ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ which is one more reason to see it
Captain Capitalism: Why Men (and Women) Hate Feminism
Captain Capitalism (2): A “PhD in Manosphere Studies”
Huffington Post: Men’s Rights Activists Don’t Want You To See ‘Mad Max’
The Independent: Mad Max: Fury Road enrages Men’s Rights Activists who claim they are being duped into watching ‘feminist propaganda’
Photo from David Holt’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License