Sam Elliott ridicules ‘The Power of the Dog,’ director criticizes Serena and Venus instead
Fun fact: Directing films does not take nearly the physical strength as the Grand Slam
When actor Sam Elliott talks, I treat his remarks like I do with Clint Eastwood — or pretty much any older Baby Boomer or Lost Generation group. I’m prepared for some old-fashioned views that are lightweight racist, homophobic and (post-COVID-19) xenophobic. I heard all the uproar regarding Elliott describing director Jane Campion’s film “The Power of the Dog” as “a piece of shit” with “allusions of homosexuality,” and then completely ignoring the entire spaghetti western subgenre while asking, “What the fuck does this woman from down there know about the American West?”
I wasn’t surprised he said any of this. I’m still dumbfounded that he’s not exactly like his character on the Netflix show “The Ranch.” Not only was Elliott perplexed by Trump winning the presidency, but he said “just the fact that this guy could get elected president is mind-boggling.” Then he went on to narrate (now President) Joe Biden’s ad campaign. I was not expecting that at all.
Regardless of me giving Elliott kudos for the latter, if I was Campion and directed a film that he called a “piece of shit,” I want all the smoke. I don’t care what else you did before that film; don’t insult my work that badly. The criticism wasn’t even constructive. He was tearing it apart. Instead, Campion went out of her way to insult tennis multi-champions Serena and Venus Williams. I’m confused.
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If you haven’t heard about her Critics Choice Award stunt by now, on March 13, Campion delivered an acceptance speech. But instead of solely defending her film, bringing up how proud she is of the western or discussing her work with the cast, she reached way into the rafter seats of stupid and compared herself to Venus and Serena Williams, who were sitting in the audience.
“It’s absolutely stunning to be here tonight among so many incredible women,” she said, starting on a positive note.
“What an honor to be in the room with you,” Campion said, looking at the athletes. “I’ve taken up tennis — I truly have — and Will, if you want to come over and give me lessons, I would truly love it. I actually had to stop playing because I’ve got tennis elbow. Venus and Serena, you’re such marvels. However, you don’t play against the guys like I have to.”
Explain. To. Me. Why. This. Was. Necessary.