In case you somehow missed it, Sam Elliott went on Marc Maron’s ‘WTF‘ podcast last week, and took the “WTF’ title to heart with his very own “WTF” moment.
Near the end of the episode, Maron asked Elliott what he thought of The Power of the Dog, and apparently that was the wrong question to ask because the 77-year-old actor had some real beef with the movie. He didn’t like how the film portrayed cowboys in the wild west. He compared the cowboys in the film to Chippendale dancers.
That’s what all these f**king cowboys in that movie looked like. They’re running around in chaps and no shirts. There’s all these allusions of homosexuality throughout the movie.
He also wondered what the director, Jane Campion, knew about American westerns because she’s from New Zealand. Oh, and he also didn’t like the fact that it was filmed in New Zealand, and not Montana where it was supposed to be set, which, uh, wait until he finds out about The Martian.
In any event, Benedict Cumberbatch (the star of the movie) responded to Elliott’s weird criticism during a recent BAFTA Film Sessions interview.
I’m trying very hard not to say anything about a very odd reaction that happened the other day on a radio podcast over here. Someone really took offense to — I haven’t heard it so it’s unfair for me to comment in detail on it — to the West being portrayed in this way. These people still exist in our world. Whether it’s on our doorstep or whether it’s down the road or whether it’s someone we meet in a bar or pub or on the sports field, there is aggression and anger and frustration and an inability to control or know who you are in that moment that causes damage to that person and, as we know, damage to those around them…[There is] no harm in looking at a character to get to the root causes of that.
And that’s the thing. Even Maron tried to explain this to Elliott. The Power of the Dog wasn’t made to say, “All cowboys were secretly gay” it was simply a story about one cowboy. Does Elliott really think there were no gay cowboys back then?
Not liking the movie is fine. I didn’t like it. I thought it was dull and predictable, but not liking it simply because the cowboys weren’t “masculine” enough is super strange.