What Women Think  

Monday, September 15 : 2:13 AM : 1 comments :

Listening to: Adele Adkins, whose album is named "19" in apparent reference to her age. Yet another English import but this one I like. Kind of Winehouse-ish but also got her own twist to it. Currently digging on "Best For Last."

So I'm sitting around at home, trying to decompress after San Francisco, flicking channels and hoping for some mind numbing fun. I get to "What Women Want," a Mel Gibson vehicle that explores (in a romantic comedy way) what life might be like for a chauvinistic man's man after an accident allows him to tap into women's inner thoughts. Think Professor XX. I just had to watch, for research of course.

For the most part, Mel hears one of two things from the women around him: "Man, what an arrogant asshole" or "Wow, he's so hot, I'd totally do him." With his new found insights, he chooses to become a womanizing nice guy who plays the Mr. Sensitive card to great effect. Women melt before him as he says all the things they want to hear. There's a few running sub-plots about a strained relationship with his daughter, an overlooked and possibly suicidal office assistant, and the obligatory "business or pleasure" romance.

At first, I couldn't get over how familiar the actress that played his daughter looked. Then I imdb-ed her and it turned out that Ashley Johnson was Chrissy from Growing Pains. Then I found out there was a Growing Pains reunion movie in 2000 and I immediately thought that Lilly and I should probably clear out a night to watch this thing, unless she's already seen it of course. I wouldn't put it past her actually. She has read Kirk Cameron's book.

Anyway so I'm wondering what would happen if men actually could listen to women's thoughts, and vice versa. Would we finally be able to bridge the gap? Would we fully understand each other if we didn't have to second-guess, interpret and re-interpret, or pay attention to context and body language? Would it be heaven or hell? Then it dawned on me that for the most part, the movie nailed exactly what most men are wondering about women, or rather, woman. "Does she think I'm hot?" and "Does she think I'm an asshole?" All of which boils down to "Does she like me and do I have a chance?!" Boys aren't stupid, they're just shallow. Keep throwing those rocks though.

In this way, the movie was entirely illuminating and it gave me some serious doubts about whether being able to hear a woman's thoughts would actually be a good thing. I mean, as annoying as it might be for males to constantly have to feel lost in the ocean of a woman's subterfuge and emotions, it might very well be a good thing because at least it allows the room for hope right? After all, the mystery has never been about what women think, but rather why they think the way they do. And that was something the movie didn't cover, much to my disappointment. The sequel opportunities here are huge, where are you Mel?

I can't even figure out who I'm insulting more with this conclusion, men or women. Probably both. Next up: Do women really want a man who thinks like a woman? Stay tuned.
"I think of a man, and I take away reason and accountability."
-Melvin Udall-

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