His & Hers: Shouldn’t #NoFilter Be an Equal Partnership?
Helen Mirren. Judy Dench. Annette Benning. What do these three wonderfully complex actors (yes, the preferred noun for anyone on stage and screen) have in common? Their insistence in upholding the philosophy of the #NoFilter movement on film and off. The problem? They are often demeaned or ridiculed for doing this, which in turn affects how body image is perceived by those who are exposed to these messages. Call it ageism if you like, but it is another way to create barriers to self-acceptance that can negatively affect a person for a lifetime.
Here is a case in point. A lot of tabloid and mainstream commentary has been focused on The Face of Love, an award winning indie film starring Annette Benning and Ed Harris. Throughout most of this movie, Annette wears minimal make up, and her face, neck and hands are a beautiful and natural geographic map of five and a half decades of life. She has been lambasted by many for this, as was the film for “allowing” her to appear this way. One film critic had not so subtly called the film an exploration of the “wrinkles of marriage.” The other side of the commentary?—how little was made or mentioned in the press regarding Ed Harris’s own epidermal nooks and crannies.
Play a short scene with Ed Harris
Play a short scene with Annette Bening
Body Image That Lasts a Lifetime
A persisting myth about eating disorders is that they are primarily a disorder of adolescent girls and young women. Better public education in recent years has brought out the gender equality of eating disorders. But how many are aware that eating disorders, and their underlying issues, are still present in those who are well into middle age?
Another way to support the #NoFilter movement is to applaud famous personalities for being seen in public just as untouched by make-up or photographic magic as they are behind closed doors. Hurray for movies that allow both men and women actually to look like life has left a mark. Now to be fair, in The Face of Love there were moments, such as on a romantic dinner date out, when Benning was using makeup, looking lovely and very much her age, with the camera was still in sharp focus and lighting realistic.
The primary question to be posed is how can we expect children to learn to love who they are, and develop a positive body image, if don’t provide accepting, honest parameters through the spectrum of life? Step up, support #NoFilter!
The #NoFilter movement is intended to stop artificial rules and regulations about beauty reflected in advertising and social thought. Share your thoughts and comments on this!