Amy Schumer’s latest film sees her presenting the same tired, and quite frankly insulting, central conceit. I Feel Pretty centres on Renee (Schumer), an apparently ordinary woman who, struggling with insecurity and low self-esteem as all ordinary women do, is given the ability to feel confident and empowered through a head trauma. The idea that a head injury can provide and enable a woman to feel confident, and attractive given the proliferation of social media, and the numerous studies that have highlighted the rise in low self-esteem thanks to women constantly being presented with edited, filtered insights into the lives of others, is utterly simplistic and undermines a very real, vital issue.
The trailer shows Renee berating Emily Ratajkowski when Ratajkowski begins to discuss her own feelings of self-esteem. Renee immediately scolds Ratajkowski, as seemingly she, as an objectively attractive woman, can surely only feel and define her own self-worth through her appearance.
The trailer then is problematic enough before we focus on the fact that Schumer, while supposedly defying the norms and ideals of Hollywood beauty, is, a slim, attractive, white, blonde woman. One whose privilege allows her to star in such films, and become a success in Hollywood. Truly, the continued insistence on creating this narrative is distasteful and needs interrogation.