“The media encourage the fight between women to oppress us”

For those who doubt the reaction against feminism that is sweeping the world, Olivia Wilde has a forceful answer in the form of an ironic title: Do not worry dear. The second film as a director by the also actress poses a supposedly perfect Arcadia from the 50s, lost in the desert, where men work on a secret project while women give themselves over to domestic care. It’s just the beginning of some solid and entertaining sci-fi, with plenty of twists and depth charges.

The noise and fury of his promotion since the Venice Festival only confirms Wilde’s theses on the latent misogyny in society. Let’s review: reminders of his relationship with the younger Harry Styles; notes of her alleged infidelities with her former husband, Jason Sudeikis; and speculation about a ‘catfight’ with his film’s star Florence Pugh. Is it necessary to continue?

Do not worry dear confirms that the joyous super nerds It had nothing of an accident and Wilde also has a lot of talent with bigger budgets, the main Achilles heel of the progressive search for equality in the industry.

Q.: The film is a metaphor for the reaction against feminism. Is it a description of the times or a warning about what may come?

A.: I think it is both a description and a warning. It is a story about a woman who realizes that she needs to ask questions and listen to those who have asked questions before her, who have been ignored. She needs to follow her instincts. It also deals with the rejection of the feminist movement. There is a nostalgia for a time when women had very few rights. I think that this tenure to claim patriarchal power manifests itself in different ways. 53% of white women voted for Trump, that is, they voted directly against their own interests. It is also seen in culture incel In Internet. They are men who rage against a movement for a more equal society. But the film is also an opportunity to celebrate the courage of women who stand up for what they believe in. And I think Alice (Florence Pugh) is a superhero character: she’s willing to sacrifice everything to do what’s right.

Q.: Do you at least think that the entertainment industry is moving firmly towards equality?

Q.: The entertainment industry has changed, but in some ways we have regressed. In the silent film era there were many female directors. Now we’ve made progress after the complete regression of the 1950s, when the big studios didn’t fund female directors. From the 60s to the 90s it grew a bit, not so much in the first decade of the 2000s where there were still very few. Now we see more, but what is worrying is that the industry itself has different standards for female directors and their films. Double standards are still very clear and misogyny is still very strong in the entertainment industry. It’s something you see in the press coverage, but you also see it in the industry itself: like the patriarchy is still very much a part of Hollywood.

Q.: In the film, the women are disconnected from each other. Is the lack of sorority one of the risks of the feminist movement?

A.: I think it’s a very convenient tool to keep women apart, to encourage a kind of internal struggle within the female community. It is very convenient to capitalize on misogyny: it is used in the media for women to destroy each other. We see it everywhere, if you keep women fighting each other they won’t unite and they won’t be able to be as powerful as we really are. When I see misogyny coming from women, whether it’s in the media or anywhere else, I think, well, that’s how they oppress us. We women will stop if we don’t realize that our most powerful tool is to unite with each other. Stop playing by the rules of the patriarchy and understand our collective.

Olivia Wilde, during the interview at the San Sebastian Festival. RTVE.es

Q.: The film finds the balance between entertainment and message, something that seems to be disappearing from movie screens, where things are only seen separately. Was that balance important to you?

A.: Yes, I’ve always liked the idea of ​​what I call a ‘Trojan horse movie’, which is beautiful on the outside and, when you go in, it has a lot of questions and a lot to discover. Movies that have inspired me for a long time are entertainment with ideas. You see it a lot in science fiction, if you think about Source, by Christopher Nolan, seizes the medium and is glorious to watch but sobering. Kubrick was always very good at it, he was a master of style and all of his films raised questions about the abuse of power. Science fiction has long been an entertaining way to talk about politics.

Q.: Speaking of power, the film also poses a totalitarian drift. Is it also the danger of nostalgia for a certain past?

A.: Yes, I think there is a real danger in this nostalgia. I don’t think there has ever been a better era in American history than now, even though we still have many flaws. When you hear ‘make America great again’ politicians they are referring to a time when women had even fewer rights. I think the theme of chaos versus order, which the character of Frank (Chris Pine) uses in the film, is a convenient way to control the population. People crave order because it makes them feel safe and secure. It makes you feel part of a large group. It is very primitive and almost animal. We want to be part of a pack because the pack is harder to attack. You are less vulnerable. But it also means that you are controlled. And I think the movie is trying to ask you to accept the chaos as an opportunity to break the mold. Because if we don’t break the mold, then we will continue in this cycle. That’s really troublesome.

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