McClane’s Profane; Dakota’s Naked. Hooray?

Written by Steve Pauwels on February 22, 2013

So, will the former adolescent starlet hereafter be sold as “Dakota Fanny”? 

I suppose the nineteen year old’s career turn shouldn’t surprise, not too much. Things predictably, and grievously, unfold this way for movie-industry up-and-comers. Along the way, Fanning herself has sprinkled hints this kind of development was aborning. Observers have been prepared. 

A twelve-year-old Fanning’s involvement in a dramatic rape scene in 2007’s Hounddog stirred unwelcome attention. “Some critics and religious groups said she was too young to play a rape victim,” writes ABC News’s Jennifer Abbey. Fanning dismissively defended the role,  “It’s not really happening. It’s a movie, and it’s called acting.”

More recently, the beaming blondette did a provocative stint for Marc Jacob’s “Oh, Lola!” fragrance. The then-seventeen year old posed with a perfume bottle suggestively — I would add clumsily — positioned between her legs.

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Phallic imagery? Foisted on a minor? No problem there. 

786px-Dakota_Fanning_Push_PremiereElaborating on her latest, clothing-deficient outing, Fanning admitted, “I’ve never done that before and I’m very newly allowed to do that  … I was newly 18, so yeah … it’s kind of a sensitive thing, but it’s a part of life.” 

Some freshly-minted eighteen year olds mark that milestone by casting their first vote, a dinner out with friends, maybe registering for the draft. For her part, Dakota Fanning takes it all off for theaters full of male oglers. Sort of a clothing-optional cotillion?  

Moviegoers vexed by prospects of Miss Fanning’s emotional discomfort, breathe easy —  The Sun further discloses, “She had plenty of moral support on set from co-stars Demi Moore and Ellen Barkin – who have both posed nude numerous times on film.” Nice to see the seasoned, getting-naked-on-camera veterans helping along the rookie, isn’t it!  (I wonder if Demi confided relationship tips and Ms. Barkin passed along her political insights to their young, birthday-suited charge?)

So: tepid efforts at de-coarsening the Die Hard series? Essentially reversed. Now nakedly official? Dakota Fanning is no longer film audiences’ favorite innocent. And all around? Both moves meet with nods of approval. 

It does help clarify: how killing unborn children could become a major American industry; why the perversion of marriage is widely met with indifference — even ebullience; how majorities continue holding Bill Clinton(!) in high esteem; why otherwise competent voters would help install  Barack Obama — twice! —  as America’s leader. 

Something is deeply, desperately out-of-whack at the core of American society.

What are decent people to do?

By all means, no fatalistic shoulder shrugging; do keep speaking up against this sewage boiling over in every corner of our entertainment-saturated environment. Will we be hazarding charges of “puritanism” or “uptightness“? Absolutely — but I’d say the preservation of our civilization, currently spiraling into a cloacal cesspool, is worth it.

Withhold support — our money, viewership, approval — from this corrosive cycle. Then purposefully and unapologetically endorse those entrants into the cultural ambit which elevate participants and enhance what is best about our superior, Judeo-Christian-shaped way of life.

Raise our children to love God and country, and equip them to enter the marketplace equipped to excel and influence without compromising their noble principles for the sake of “success“. Tricky, challenging? You bet — but possible. And essential. (See the prophet Daniel and his three Hebrew friends).

In today’s squalid pop environment, neither guts nor imagination are required to unfurl another F-bomb or lewdly wisecrack, nor to shake a little, unclad booty for the sake of “the craft”. Authentic courage, praiseworthy integrity, are found in stiff-arming the tawdry, lazy status quo; refusing to sell-out one’s values for a buck or the unreliable plaudits of the fashionistas.

Any standard short of that deserves an abusive, John-McClane-level epithet. It might be unprintable, but it would be accurate.

Image: Bruce Willis/Live Free or Die Hard premiere/ in London; source:http://flickr.com /photos/ caroline_bonarde/580687930/in/set-72157594501080666/;author:Caroline Bonarde Ucci; Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license

Lower Image: Actress Dakota Fanning; 29 January 2009; source: originally posted to Flickr as dakota fanning push premiere; author: fashion photographer Anthony Citrano at http://www.zigzaglens. com/;Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

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Steve Pauwels is pastor of Church of the King, Londonderry, NH and host of Striker Radio with Steve Pauwels on the Red State Talk Radio Network. He's also husband to the lovely Maureen and proud father of three fine sons: Mike, Sam and Jake.

 

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