Cate Blanchett is defending her Oscar-contending drama “Her” in the wake of criticism from conductor Marin Alsop. Alsop, who some believe inspired Blanchett’s character and is name-checked in the movie, railed against the Todd Field-directed play in an interview with The Sunday Times, saying that it “represents her as a woman … as a conductor.” … offended as a lesbian”
Speaking on BBC Radio 4 (via The Independent ), Blanchett said she had the “ultimate respect” for Aslop. “He is a trailblazer as a musician and as a conductor,” added the Oscar winner. “And it’s a very provocative film and it’s going to have a very strong reaction for people.”
“What [director Todd Field] And I really wanted to create a lively conversation,” continued Blanchett. “So there is no right or wrong response to artwork. This is not a film about management, and I think that the character’s situation is completely fictional. I looked at a lot of different conductors, but I also looked at novelists and visual artists and musicians of all stripes. It’s a very non-literal film.”
Blanchett said Aslop is “entitled to her opinion”, but the actor spoke about “her” ability, not gender. “It’s a meditation on power and power is genderless,” she said. In an earlier interview, Blanchett described the film as “a meditation on power and the corrupting nature of power, and I think that doesn’t just happen in cultural circles.”
“I mean, he could have been a master architect or the head of a major banking corporation,” Blanchett added of his character. He later said, “I don’t think you could talk about the corrupting nature of power as succinctly as Todd Field did as a filmmaker if there was a man at the center of it because we understand what that looks like. I think power is a corrupting force. Which is regardless of one’s gender. I think it affects all of us.”
In his “Her” review, Aslop condemned the movie for being an abuser of Blanchett’s eponymous conductor. “To have the opportunity to portray a woman in that role and make her an abuser — it was heartbreaking for me,” she wrote. “I think all women and all feminists should be disturbed by this kind of portrayal because it’s not really about female conductors, is it? It is women as leaders in our society.
“Tár” stars Blanchett as a world-renowned maestro whose personal life and professional career are turned upside down by his toxic behavior. Blanchett won the best actress award at the Venice Film Festival and is widely expected to receive Oscar nominations, as well as fields for best picture and best director. She just won the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Drama and has been nominated for Best Actress at the Critics’ Choice Awards and Screen Actors Guild Awards.
“Her” is now playing in theatres