I would normally shun to report on anything that has to do with the New York Observer’s Rex Reed – mostly because he’s a terrible film critic and not because he’s also a total jerk. But when Reed decided to use his review space for Identity Thief to criticize Melissa McCarthy not for being in a bad movie but for being overweight … well, I will use just about any opportunity to lay into the guy.
Case in point: Reed recently decided to talk about Melissa McCarthy one more time, this time to Us Weekly. Let’s read what the charmer has to say:
I can only repeat what I have said before — that I do not have, nor have I ever had, anything personal against people who suffer from obesity… what I object to is the disgusting attempt to pretend obesity is funny. It is not remotely humorous, and every obese comedian who ever made jokes about the disease are now dead from strokes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. As a critic whose opinions are constitutionally protected by law, I stand by all of my original remarks about Melissa McCarthy’s obesity, which I consider about as amusing as cancer, and apologize for nothing.
Who really expected anything less than such a classy non-apology from such a classy guy? Reed does know his First Amendment rights – he can indeed say any asinine thing that comes into his head about an actress, without a thought to who it might hurt, or how incredibly offensive it might seem. And the rest of us have the right to call him an idiot for it … or perhaps other, non-PC terms that I can think of right now.
If you want classy, note Melissa McCarthy’s response to the whole Reed issue:
I felt really bad for someone who is swimming in so much hate. I just thought, that’s someone who’s in a really bad spot, and I am in such a happy spot. I laugh my head off every day with my husband and my kids who are mooning me and singing me songs.
Yeah. I may not have enjoyed Identity Thief, but I respect Melissa McCarthy a whole lot right now.
Here’s where this controversy needs to come to an end. Reed has received way too much publicity and play about a vicious thing he said about a talented actress. The last thing that film criticism needs is to keep on talking about a childish bully. We need to give Rex Reed exactly the amount of play he deserves, by ignoring him in every way shape and form. He gives a bad name to film criticism, to editorials, and to human beings.
Melissa McCarthy, meanwhile, can next be seen in The Heat with Sandra Bullock, due out this Friday.
And if you want a really excellent response to Reed’s bull? Check out Scott Weinberg’s article on the subject.