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Review: The Red Pill (Documentary, 2016)

I occasionally come across references to the documentary “The Red Pill”. It’s not so much that people in the various manosphere/men’s rights/mgtow/red pill communities speak very highly of it. Instead, it is praised as an attempt to bring awareness of contemporary men’s issues into the mainstream. I recently watched that documentary. In a nutshell, if you’re halfway tuned in, it will be very hard to find justification for spending two hours of your time and a few bucks for digitally borrowing the movie.

Various relevant themes are covered, such as the myth of the gender pay gap, the hugely lop-sided family court system that takes your kids and wrecks your life financially, turning you into little more than a slave for the system. It also highlights the opposition MRA’s have been facing. It’s pretty cringe-worthy when men who had their kids taken away and are on the hook for maintaining their former spouse’s standard of living get accosted by a bunch of lesbians and soyboys with effeminate mannerism who, in their high-pitched voices, denounce men, whites, or the patriarchy. I think this is an interesting generational conflict: The older MRA’s had their lives destroyed, while those simps largely grew up in fatherless homes altogether.

I disliked that the director and narrator of the movie, Cassie Jaye, who also steps in front of the camera for interviews, hardly ever challenges any of her interlocutors. Some of the interviews, which include prominent figures like AVfM founder Paul Elam or early men’s rights activist Warren Farrell, could have been more interested with probing questions. This is even worse when she interviews leading academic man-haters. She essentially just lets them drone on, nodding her head.

The weakest part of the movie is that the woman who directed it, Cassie Jaye, made it too much about herself. Heck, we even learn that she couldn’t make it in Hollywood because other women had cuter faces, slimmer bodies, and perkier tits. She gets a tremendous amount of screen time. Even in the interviews she is featured prominently, nodding, when it would have been perfectly fine to just see the person she’s interviewing on the screen. The worst parts, though, are when she turns the movie into some kind of personal narrative according to which she, roughly, initially wanted to discredit the kind of activism she covers, and then partly changed her mind. Also, I really don’t need to a see a crying woman on screen. (No, this won’t make me like you any better or look past your flawed documentary. Grow the fuck up.) That kind of manipulation is seriously annoying in real life. On the screen it’s downright laughable.

Overall, “The Red Pill” is a decent documentary, even though it does not focus on the proper ‘red pill’ community per se and instead casts a wide net, wanting to cover seemingly every group that objects gynocentrism. A big omission is that she does not discuss where a lot of ‘red pilling’ happens. Sure, the books of Warren Farrell or a site like A Voice for Men play an important role, but there are some very active websites, forums, YouTube channels, Reddit groups that arguably much more important than any of the people she interviewed. I don’t think that AVfM and Warren Farrell reach young men. However, various reddit forums and YouTube personalities like Turd-Flinging Monkey, Sandman, and Terrence Pop most certainly do.


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9 thoughts on “Review: The Red Pill (Documentary, 2016)

  1. On AVfM vs youtubers…

    I’m sorry but… the latter wouldn’t exist without the former. They’re offshoots.

    I remember in the early days of AVfM when it was just starting out and we were redoing the website… the columns we had on there were literally the only ones on the planet covering certain data, facts, arguments etc.

    Like literally nobody anywhere was saying these things. None of these youtubers existed. And no we’re not talking ancient history, just a couple of years before the first youtubers started popping up.

    The information started spreading by itself, and others took the torch and passed it around sure. But none of those younger-reaching youtubers would even have anything to talk about if it were not for AVfM. Most of the major points, arguments, data, theories originated in an AVfM column or Warren Farrell book. Even if the people popularizing those ideas might not be aware of it.

    1. Yes, AVfM was a very important source back then. The point I wanted to make, though, is that if you make a documentary “in the current year”, then it may make sense to also look at the wider scene.

  2. Multiple sources wanted to make a documentary on MGTOW. All were trying to make a hit piece. All failed because no one would talk to them. The red pill documentary was also intended to be a feminist hit piece on the MRA movement. It turned out well this time. But it could have turned bad just as easily. She could have cut out all positive arguments and just presented her picture of the oppressive women haters just as easily. Most red pilled guys will think twice before talking in some documentary. They can lose their jobs if their identity is made public. Feminist often hares employer’s to make them fire those they disagree with. Family and friends are also targets for feminist sjw’s. And most MGTOW don’t like it when someone speaks for the community. Unlike the MRA we don’t have central leadership and MGTOW is a-political. No one can represent MGTOW for this reason. It’s considered one of it’s greatest strengths by most MGTOW. They can’t defame the central leadership if non exist. It’s just a philosophy.

    1. On that note, recently VICE contacted me about some of my previous work on debunking PUA gurus. I told the first one, a woman, that I’m not interested in talking to them. A week later another woman from VICE reached out to me, trying a bit harder, and I didn’t even respond to her. I don’t think anything good can come from it. I fully expect that they would twist every word I say.

    2. VICE reached out to many MGTOW guys as well. You’re right not to trust them. They are known for twisting things. CNN also reached out to MGTOW guys. No one wants to talk to leftwing media anymore. They always twist things anyway. VICE is pushing leftwing politics hard. The only possible advertisement and exposure would be aimed at lefty’s anyway. Not really your market. Even if they wouldn’t twist your words. You simply have nothing to gain from this.

    3. Paul Elam was trying to create a political wing for his MRM with MGTOW guys. The MGTOW guys didn’t respond well. It wasn’t pretty. Unlike the MRA who want to fix things with women and society. MGTOW is a philosophy that’s focused on what the individual man can do for himself. Or better yet, What he shouldn’t do for women and society. (not sacrifice himself). That’s what’s scary to most people about MGTOW. It’s not the things we do. It’s the things we refuse to do. It’s our inaction that both left and rightwing people fear. And without a central leadership that they can attack. They can only attack the philosophy it self. Or the individual man following the philosophy. It’s very hard to make a good hit piece in this way. Even if both left and right would love to kill the MGTOW movement. It’s almost impossible to do because it’s philosophy is based on inaction.

    4. It turned out well this time. But it could have turned bad just as easily.

      But that’s the point. It turned out well because Paul is a very good at handling this stuff. It’s not some freak of nature accident that the girl went from being anti mra to mra-sympathetic. I know you guys don’t like giving Paul credit, and that’s fine, but he did great work here.

    5. Oh, I don’t think there are many people who don’t want to give Paul Elam credit. His work is very important and has been highly influential.

    6. Alek Novy: Personally i don’t have anything against Paul Elam. There have been some tensions between some MGTOW and Paul Elam in the past. He basically was trying to represent MGTOW at one point. I think he does some great work for the MRM. But his attempt to represent the MGTOW community just wasn’t a smart move. It only created tension between the MRM and MGTOW. And it’s a sad thing considering we agree on 95% of all male related issues. Personally i don’t see a reason for conflict between the MRM and MGTOW at all. I just don’t consider myself part of the MRM movement anymore. As i gave up on trying to change society. I focus on myself instead. I wish the MRM and Paul Elam good luck. And i do give them credit for raising awareness. But i highly doubt they will ever achieve any meaningful change. Men will always been seen as dispossible utilities by most women, governments and most of society. It’s just the way it is.

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