This is going to sound a bit odd, but it suddenly hit me yesterday that just about every lead actor in every Sundance film I’ve seen over the last seven days has smallish, rounded girly-shoulders. Broad male shoulders are analagous to large female breasts, and you can call me a closet case but I like broad shoulders on male actors. Most of us do, I suspect. I know that I’m starting to almost hate little nancyboy ones, probably because I feel like I’ve been deluged by these since arriving in Park City.
People will think you an ape if you complain about the lack of big boobs in Sundance films but you can gripe about this, I’m presuming. Narrow, rounded girly shoulders are a metaphor for a lack of balls and slacker-tude and impotence. and big broad shoulders are metaphors for strength and confidence, like strong jaw lines and deep gravelly voices.
Seriously — name one male star or costar of one Sundance ’13 film with broad shoulders who isn’t The East‘s Alexander Skarsgaard.
Prince Avalanche‘s Paul Rudd has small rounded shoulders. Before Midnight‘s Ethan Hawke has small rounded shoudlers. Ain’t Them Bodies Saints costar Casey Affleck has small rounded shoulders. The only actors with half-decent-looking shoulders so far are Skarsgard and (and I’m not talking wide as much as semi-wide in a chiselled sort of way) Upstream Color‘s Shane Carruth. The late Tim Hetherington, “star” of Which Way Is The Front Line From Here?, had broad shoulders but docs don’t count.
Cary Grant had broad shoulders. Ben Affleck has broad shoulders. Hell, I’ve got broad shoulders. SLP‘s Bradley Cooper has broad shoulders. Where am I going with this? I don’t know but it bothers me slightly. I’m the only guy who shares observations like this but many physical traits are digested as metaphors, and this has a bearing on films people want to see and don’t want to see. At the very least this smallish-shoulders thing suggests that indie-ish, Sundance-destined films don’t tend to attract alpha-male types, or they aren’t written for same.