Great Job, Internet!: Read This: How Mary Harron made a feminist film out of American Psycho

Mary Harron’s 2000 adaptation of Bret Easton Ellis’ novel American Psycho has become an enduring cult classic, with the film looming even larger in the public’s imagination than the controversial book upon which it was based. In a piece for The Village Voice, Angelica Jade Bastién analyzes the film and discusses why it succeeds as a satire of male vanity and pathology in a way that Easton’s “monotonous” novel does not. The difference, Bastién finds, is that the film uses what has been termed the “female gaze.” The female director, Harron, and female co-writer, Guinevere Turner, see something in this material that possibly eluded Ellis: At heart, murderous yuppie protagonist Patrick Bateman (Christian Bale) is pathetic. Other writers and filmmakers have attempted to satirize their male antiheroes, but they often get caught up in the characters’ bullshit rhetoric and end up making them too likable or dynamic …

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