Today I was watching a movie on Netflix name “What Men Want”. Being a gender neutral subject researcher, after reading the title thought let me see what's in it. I was curious to know what message this movie wants to give to the society. Ali the heroine of this movie is one who is the senior leader of an organisation managing key accounts of sports celebrities.
She is a tough woman who has been brought up by a father and her character is completely independent. The movie has portrayed her character as a strong, independent, financially well off woman. She competes with male colleagues and keeps herself on top of the competition. The entire movie is about her fight and a competitive edge to win the battle with men. To make this movie more engaging the director has also added a mystical part to it by giving her the psychic abilities to read the minds of men, she is interacting and working or facing them in every walk of life. At the end she says be what you are and don't try to win the race. However, if I look at this entire movie from a Gender point of you view, I see the character is portrayed as the one who is constantly relating herself with men. Too much focus on her sexuality, Her bedroom intimate scenes with men are projected as she is the controlling, the dominating one and one who loves to tame a man while she is in her sexual fantasies. It may be the case with few women, since we are not judging anyone’s sexuality. However, the director has projected overall character of a strong woman who is financially independent, career oriented, ambitious, aggressive and competitive and sexually aggressive. Expressing lack of motherly touch while dealing with her boyfriend's child, Trying to be one up on men by using a lot of abusive language and bringing out the anger by being aggressive. At some point, I felt such movies and documentaries redefine the strong woman as the one who is loose in her sexuality, aggressive in her sexual fantasies to conquer a man in the bed which she can’t do outside. Another glaring observation was on the mystical aspect where she gets the powers to know the thoughts of men who are in an around her. It is shown that every man is objectifying, insulting her, trying to defeat her (women).
Such movies recreate the new expression of a strong woman and endorses the act of a man is sexual. The current flow of movies on Netflix, Amazon prime movie wave has failed in creating a balanced identity of a man and a woman. It has taken further into the pseudo freedom of sexuality as an independence and ability to create happiness by way of being extreme. Hope at the some point of time such movies are checked and censored by some authority is to stop giving wrong messages and confusing signals to youth and the social norms