Friday, April 16, 2010

CENSORED: Fear and Desire for Men in the Sopranos, Mad Men and Prince of Swine

Q: You’ve been censored from both the far right and far left for Prince of Swine? The far left tried to ban Prince of Swine from the Indie Fest. At the same time, you feel the movie trailer was unjustly restricted by a ratings system and social norms which lean far to the right -

Mark Toma (writer/director): And both rationales, left and right, are a pretense, they present it as morality, but really it’s fear of sex, sexual repression.

Q: Explain.

MT: It’s funny, there’s almost no difference between the far right and far left on this issue, this is basically the lunatic fringe, from both directions that’s making all the fuss. But it’s the lunatic fringe that tends to make law and control policy in this area, left and right, the 10% of morons who ruin it for everyone else. Most Americans can’t be bothered and are just living life, going about their business. The middle 80-90% of Americans watch Prince of Swine and are no more offended than an episode of the Sopranos. A little more sex, a little less violence, but they enjoy the edge to it, just like people enjoy the Sopranos so much and for the same reason (and isn’t it the most hilarious thing that, whatever his looks, Tony Soprano is a sex symbol, the combination of violence and power so many women find attractive, as well as so many men enjoying that character).

Q: I don’t understand were you banned for sex or violence?

MT: We were attacked from both left and right for violent, passionate, consensual sex, whether it was an expression of love or an expression of rage. We got zapped from the right, given a Hard R for the trailer, which means it can't play in front of most R-rated movies, and also from the left for being an “affront to feminism” those are the words of the people who tried to have our festival award revoked, not mine. These are the same monkeys who say Mad Men is anti-feminist. The content of Prince of Swine is also almost exactly similar to Mad Men, same theme, same subject matter, but Mad Men is a perfect snapshot of history, whereas Prince of Swine is happening right here, right now, totally cutting edge. That’s the first thing that pops out at you watching Mad Men, “Have these guys never heard of harassment law?”, whereas a harassment suit is the central action of Prince of Swine.

Q: Prince of Swine is a little harder edged than Mad Men

MT: That’s a concession Mad Men had to make to play on AMC, the ratings code is a little tighter there than it would be for HBO, which is pay cable, so they had to take a little of the edge off. I guarantee you, left to his own devices, the creator of Mad Men is a Sopranos disciple, he’d push it to the edge just as hard as the Sopranos does –

Q: Why do you say it’s sexual repression?

MT: Because there’s no violence in Prince of Swine, or rather, the violence is there, but it’s completely repressed, just like society, the passions only come out as sex and rage, nobody shoots anybody, like they do in the Sopranos, not a single beating, maiming, nobody rapes gay men with a pool cue, but it’s just as intense, it just all gets channeled into sex and lawsuits in Prince of Swine, and that’s what freaks children, on both the right and left, out –

Q: How do you know?

MT: Because their objections are bullshit and not the real reasons. The left says it’s anti-feminist. Pure crap, I consider it a feminist movie. Again, these are the same monkeys who say Mad Men is anti-feminist. The right says its immoral about sex. Again: pure horseshit, from the people trying to ban gay marriage during an AIDS crisis, they’re just afraid of sex -

Q: So bullshit from the left, but horseshit from the right -

MT: We’re taking it from both sides because we show both sides, sex as an expression of rage, dominance, power – which we make very clear is monstrous, but also sex as an expression of love, redemption, which is the most beautiful, moral and sacred thing in the world, exactly what American art is lacking. I honestly think it’s way more harmful for a teenager to watch Sex and the City or some pornographic drivel like that, whose subliminal message is “girls, trade sex for money, hold out for Mr. Big”, or these little teaser shows about sex you see on Network TV, that trivialize it, than it is to watch something real like Prince of Swine.

Q: Explain.

MT: It’s like showing a teenager depictions of war, and there’s no blood, there’s no guts, the good guys always win and are just, that is truly pornographic and child abuse in my opinion, infanticide, if those kids later go into the infantry and get killed without knowing what they’re doing, or just if their mothers send them off to war ignorantly, without knowing what it really is. My feeling about this is every kid, when he’s sixteen (not to mention the parents), you should show them the opening sequence to Saving Private Ryan, in full all out gore. Actually show them 95% of that movie, just lose the lame ending, not on grounds of morality, just an artistically bad ending. Show’em Glory too, that’s a good one for war. I don’t even think kids should be allowed to go to war, regardless, I mean, if you’ve got to send somebody, send me, I know what I’m doing, and am still in shape to fight -

Q: Getting back to your movie -

MT: My point is it’s the same thing with Prince of Swine, but about sex, not war. Show kids it at 16, so they know about sex, and know how to be moral about it, that’s way, way better than this soft porn crap like Sex and the City or all this network teaser drivel.

Prince of Swine opens at the Laemmle Sunset 5 in West Hollywood on the Sunset Strip at Crescent Heights, Memorial Day Weekend, for a limited engagement, May 28th to June 3rd.

Get tickets for Prince of Swine online at the Laemmle Sunset 5 or the Prince of Swine website (discounts available for advance and group purchasers).

Join the Prince of Swine revolution on Twitter and Facebook.

Visit Prince of Swine at http//

No comments:

Post a Comment