Director Nancy Meyers’ film The Intern was the second-highest-grossing film of the weekend. That being said, there were plenty of moments that set this film and its message back about fifty years. Jules’ husband—who quit his job in marketing to stay at home so Jules could launch her company—makes a comment about their daughter’s friend being bipolar, leading to young Paige repeating it back to Jules within earshot of the other little girl.
Turns out, in 2015, we’re still judgmental of working moms and we still think it’s ok to use mental illness as a way to insult a seven-year-old. Furthermore, there seemed to be a lot of value placed on male approval, something Jules spent the entire film searching for, and ultimately finding in her intern. Jules values Ben’s approval and opinion over all else—after all, he is the last good, chivalrous guy on Earth. Together, they roll their eyes at the young men in Jules’ office who don’t follow the rules of traditional masculinity. “How in one generation have men gone from Jack Nicholson and Harrison Ford, to…” Jules asks, trailing off as she eyes the employees in their hoodies and fitted tees. Jules seems to think that everyone else pales in comparison to the man who still always makes sure to carry a handkerchief in his pocket because, and I quote, “women cry” and he never knows when they’ll need to dab their tears.