James Cameron Calls ‘Wonder Woman’ A ‘Step Backward’ For Female Characters In Film

When Wonder Woman was released earlier this summer, it was heralded by most as a nuanced portrayal of a noble and strong — yet still learning — heroine, with many agreeing that it managed to subvert the male gaze by not objectifying Diana and the rest of the Amazons. Instead of being sexy playthings for male consumption, we were given women who were beautiful, but most importantly powerful.

Well, James Cameron politely disagrees. According to the director of Aliens and The Terminator, Wonder Woman is not the feminist hero that we’re looking for. He told the Guardian,

“All of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over Wonder Woman has been so misguided. She’s an objectified icon, and it’s just male Hollywood doing the same old thing! I’m not saying I didn’t like the movie but, to me, it’s a step backwards. Sarah Connor was not a beauty icon. She was strong, she was troubled, she was a terrible mother, and she earned the respect of the audience through pure grit. And to me, [the benefit of characters like Sarah] is so obvious. I mean, half the audience is female!”

You’re right, James Cameron. A real step backwards.

To be clear, with Sarah Connor and Ellen Ripley, Cameron did give us two of cinema’s biggest badasses. However, between Connor’s sexual assault in T2 and Jamie Lee Curtis having to strip tease for her life in True Lies, Cameron can’t really throw any stones. While it’s fair to say that Hollywood needs more complex women on screen (it absolutely does), tearing down Wonder Woman in the process probably isn’t the track to take.

(Via the Guardian)