Netflix’s loose adaptation of Motley Crüe’s autobiography seems tone deaf in the “#MeToo”

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By Sayeda Ghazanfar

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the sex, drugs and rock n’ roll trope but this is ridiculous.

“The Dirt,” simply puts misogyny and bad boy debauchery back on the map with the worst timing.

The movie, with input from each member of the ‘80s heavy metal band, Mötley Crüe, portrays their tumultuous relationship with drugs, alcohol and each other while at the height of their fame as rock stars of the Sunset Strip.

The movie is based on the 2001 Mötley Crüe memoir, “The Dirt: Confessions of the World’s Most Notorious Rock Band” and is directed by Jeff Tremaine (“Jackass,” “Bad Grandpa”).

The story is narrated by bassist Nikki Sixx, (Douglas Booth), drummer Tommy Lee (Machine Gun Kelly), singer Vince Neil (Daniel Webber) and guitarist Mick Mars (Iwan Rheon).

The band is boisterous about their crazy antics, especially with women. Scores of naked women are seen in their hotel rooms, their green rooms and their homes and are not regarded as much.

In fact the opening scene shows Lee performing oral sex on a female in public. They also snort lines of cocaine off women’s backsides, call them dogs and punch them on tour buses and have the audacity to pass it off as “boys will be boys” debauchery. What era are we in again?

The movie starts by chronicling Sixx’s troublesome childhood with his mother and the revolving door of abusive stepdads. He gets his mother arrested after cutting himself and goes to live on the streets of LA where he meets Lee and Mars.

Lee introduces him to Neil at a backyard show and tells the other members, “I don’t even care if he can sing or not, look what he’s doing to those girls.” Thus, Mötley Crüe is formed.

The movie has so many misogynistic moments, it’s hard to cover them all.

While Kelly’s portrayal of Lee is playful and innocent, the movie fails to mention that he had an abusive streak and served prison time for beating his former wife Pamela Anderson,  who the movie completely fails to mention.

The only thing that alludes to Lee being abusive to women was the scene where he punches a former fiance on their tour bus but only after she stabs him with a fountain pen and calls his mother a derogatory name, as if to justify the outburst of violence.

Truth is, the music industry has always treated female fans like garbage. The very term “groupie” is offensive to women who love music and this movie capitalizes on that by implying that every single female would sleep with any member of Mötley Crüe.

Their A&R man Tom Zutaut (Pete Davidson) said, “Don’t ever leave your girlfriend alone with Mötley Crüe, ever.”

The most disappointing thing about “The Dirt” is that they didn’t reconcile or seem to be remorseful about their treatment of women, they were only remorseful about their alcohol and drug abuse.

If you’re a fan of the band, maybe you’ll like the movie. The performances by the actors are not bad, but we can agree that ultimately the band won notoriety because of their behavior not their talent and that is reflective throughout the entire movie.

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