Alleged anti-Semitism, Netflix’s hit ‘Do Revenge’ should have done its due diligence

The number one movie in North America, the largest streaming platform, this weekend on Netflix, a particularly good-but-certainly-watchable teen comedy called “Do Revenge.” (Its poor grammar is discussed in the film.)

It’s a light affair that wears its love of past generations of high school movies like “Heathers,” “Clueless,” “Ten Things I Hate About You,” and “Mean Girls” on its finely tailored sleeves. But other than some really cool costumes, “Do Revenge” doesn’t have much to offer in terms of basic plot or clever dialogue.

There’s no reason to discuss this in such an important news publication – and surely the attention of young people who tune in this weekend will be diverted by the next streaming product in no time – except for the fact that social media Some people are accusing the film of being anti-Semitic.

facebook post And Twitter Comments Indications are that some audience members were surprised at how Jewishness of a character incorporated itself into the film. Here’s, as the target demographic would say, the tea:

“Do Revenge” is set in an ultra-elite prep school. Everyone is conspiring against everyone else and no one, at least till the end, is a pillar of righteousness. Our main characters (played by Camila Mendes and Maya Hawke) make a pact to fulfill the other’s desire for revenge.

The concept is loosely based on the plot of Patricia Highsmith’s novel, “Strangers on a Train” (later adapted for film by Alfred Hitchcock and later, “Throw Mamma from the Train”) by Danny DeVito. Highsmith’s book is not credited as the official source for “Do Revenge”, but one of the girls is seen blinking at those reading it in a very short shot.

There are some twists and turns that show that almost everyone in the school is cunning and deceitful and fake Instagram likes and what not, and the cast is a rainbow of diversity of all races and sexual orientations. However, the biggest villain, along with the richest and most politically connected father, is a twerp named Max Broussard, played by Austin Abrams.

Austin Abrams as Max in ‘Do Revenge’. (Kim Sims/Netflix)

Wikipedia, which is very good at pinpointing “who is a Jew”, Abrams’ father is of Russo-Jewish heritage. We hear nothing about Broussard’s ethnicity, although he does use the Yiddish word “kevel” at one point. But toward the third act of this Miami-set film, where shirts are often buttonless, we see, quite prominently, a Star of David necklace.

Why is it, some have asked, that the only Jew in the film is a sexist, manipulative jerk who appears as the puppet master of the school’s toxic social structure?

When spoken this way, one can understand why some people may feel uneasy.

But there is a twist. The two supporting characters in the film are kind, and one of them, Max’s sister Gabby, represents the voice of moral clarity throughout the play. I don’t know whether Talia Ryder, who plays Gabby, is Jewish, nor do I think it’s relevant. (I know she’s not Winona Ryder’s daughter, which is obviously a pretty common question, and with good reason – they look pretty much the same!) But, logically, the character is Jewish, and she rose Smells like

Maia Refico as Montana in ‘Do Revenge’, Paris Berelk as Meghan, Maya Hawke as Eleanor and Alisha Bo as Tara. (Kim Sims/Netflix)

Still, as a person on Twitter tells, we never see him wearing david or tea or anything like that. One is half-watching this movie while texting or TikToking or whatever the target audience is doing may fail to make a connection.

The politics of the film, like any, is vaguely liberal.

Maya Hawke as Eleanor in ‘Do Revenge’. (Kim Sims/Netflix)

We sympathize, in part, with Camila Mendes’ character as a trying minority for attending this oddly brilliant school on a scholarship. Maya Hawk’s character is gay, and her sexuality is never unacceptable by the other characters (even if they are “bad” for other reasons). So for a film that takes great care to be on the “right side” of things, the deliberate choice to Jewish the unreliable villain stands out. Wasn’t there a producer somewhere on set to ask, “Ugh, are you sure you want to do this?”

Of course, in reality, growing up in New Jersey (which is like Florida plus snow), I definitely knew some kids like Max Broussard. Some were Gentiles, some were Jews. Art is supposed to reflect life, and I am deeply concerned about Peanuts Gallery social media users wanting to ban art based on what is considered politically correct.

Most recently, the extraordinary film “Everything Everywhere All At Once” caught fire Because a character played by Jewish actress Jenny Slate was called “Big Nose” by a Chinese character. The film’s producers, who are not Jewish, apologized, although, in my opinion, they should not have done so. For starters, “big nose,” I’ve learned as a result of this minor brouha, is a common, rude term used by many Chinese people against all white people. But on top of that: life is messy, and people have many facets, and eradicating everything from movies and turning everything to kindergarten is going to create a very boring culture.

Unlike “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” however, “Do Revenge” is such a medium product that I can’t resist the strength to defend it as a sacred work of art. Unlike the “Big Nose” situation, which comes from a place of honesty with a character, a star of David seems to be front and center in an otherwise frothy and forgettable film, as my British friends might put it. , a “self-goal.” He should have spared himself the headache and not included it.

Is this anti-Semitism? I don’t know People should make movies about anything they want, and it’s foolish to pretend that all Jews are saints. Usually this is where I recommend you watch the movie and decide for yourself, but as a critic I can’t really recommend you go down that route. So we’re stuck. Someone has clearly “avenged” all of us.

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