Miley Cyrus, Jennifer Aniston Get Bad Reviews -- Are Critics Harder On Women?

Sona Charaipotra

Jennifer Aniston in the Bounty Hunter
Photo from Columbia Pictures
Check out the recent rotten reviews plaguing actresses like Miley Cyrus in The Last Song and Jennifer Aniston in The Bounty Hunter. Man, it's hard being a female movie star these days!

It's not like these are Oscar-worthy turns -- although, as Sandra Bullock proved, the media doesn't really treat you with much respect even if you do nab an Academy Award. But it just seems like media folks are setting out to slaughter these actresses in their reviews.

Aniston currently stars with the always one-note modern day neanderthal (and reported real-life love) Gerard Butler in the admittedly skimpy romantic comedy The Bounty Hunter. But while the movie may have bombed, the attacks have been nothing if not personal. "She's aged out, no matter the yoga and the highlights," one anonymous critic told the New York Post. "She just can't do America's sweetheart next door. She needs a big wake-up call." The critic then bashed her taste in men, suggesting "she's missing a common sense gene."

Miley Cyrus -- in Nicholas Sparks' romance, The Last Song -- also draws ire from many critics. The New York Times critic A.O. Scott, for example, notes that "acting, for the moment at least, seems almost entirely beyond [Cyrus]. In The Last Song she pouts, slouches, storms in and out of rooms and occasionally cracks a snaggle-toothed smile, but most of the time she seems to be mugging for the camera, play-acting rather than exploring the motives and feelings of her character."

A critic for the San Francisco Chronicle gets even meaner: "Cyrus is ghastly in The Last Song, bad not just in one or two ways, but in all kinds of ways. It was a disservice to the audience, to the material and to Cyrus herself that she was put in this position."

Ouch. When Brad or George or even Zac Efron delivers a less than stellar turn, the critics aren't nearly as hostile, bashing acting ability wholesale and calling out the performer's personal life to boot.

Sure, maybe these roles won't win the actresses' any awards, but, to me, it seems the critics get some kind of self-aggrandizing glee from demeaning these women.

What do you think? Are critics' harsher on female movie stars? And is it deservedly so?

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