Filmmaker Cassie Jaye seems to have developed a weird affinity for bigots.
First, she cozied up to some of the most hateful figures in the Men’s Rights movement during the filming of her documentary The Red Pill.
Then, when her funding for the film ran out, she happily accepted financial assistance not only from the actual subjects of the film but also from a motley assortment of far-right ideologues — among them a notorious quasi-journalist who was famously tossed off of Twitter after his fans barraged Ghostbusters star Leslie Jones with racist abuse, and a delusional Trump superfan who literally believes he gave Hillary Clinton the flu with his mind. (After a big donation to Jaye, he got himself an associate producer credit on her film.)
Now she’s trying her best to drum up interest in her film, which has barely drawn any notice at all outside the overlapping spheres of alt-right lady haters and MRAs since it premiered at a New York theater earlier this month.
While The Red Pill got a glowing, if rambling, “review” from new pal/volunteer fundraiser Milo Yiannopoulos at Breitbart, and a somewhat less-enthusiastic thumbs-up from Cathy Young at the right-wing internet tabloid Heat Street, the two real film reviewers who’ve bothered to give it a look have panned it.
Katie Walsh at the Los Angeles Times took issue with the film’s “uncritical, lopsided” argument, complaining that Jaye “twists herself in knots to justify the movement’s misogynist rhetoric.” The Village Voice’s Alan Scherstuhl dismissed Jaye as an inept “propagandist” and warned potential viewers that, as the headline to his piece put it, “You Can’t Unsee ‘The Red Pill,’ the Documentary About a Filmmaker Who Learns to Love MRAs.” (His review of what he described as an “agonizing” film caused much wailing and gnashing of teeth amongst the MRA crowd.)
With little hope of attracting positive attention from film critics, and apparently desperate for any publicity she could get, Jaye agreed to appear on the podcast of an internet-famous bigot who has been described by one critic, not without reason, as “THE MOST WARPED USELESS PEICE OF SH*T THAT I HAVE EVER HAD THE DISPLEASURE TO ENCOUNTER [on the] INTERNET OR ELSEWHERE.”
She didn’t just give Forney a couple of minutes of her time; she sat down with him for roughly three-quarters of an hour for his podcast “This Alt-Right Life.” It’s a singularly unedifying discussion. At one point she mentions that she used to get into arguments with her boyfriend every month about nothing, something she now jokingly blames not on PMS but on her (former) feminism.
She also expressed sympathy when Forney mentioned that he himself had been the victim of a “false” rape accusation. (Imagine that, the author of a blog post titled “Why Girls Rarely Mean No When They Say No” being accused of rape!)
Not that long ago, Jaye was by all appearances a staunch opponent of pretty much everything Forney and his alt-right pals stand for.
In 2012, she released a documentary titled “The Right to Love,” which, according to its description on IMDb, is the portrait of a “Californian married gay couple and their two adopted children,” fighting against the forces of “discrimination, ignorance and hate” who would deny them their right to marry and raise children.
Now she’s appearing on the podcast of a guy who is a virtual embodiment of this ignorance and hate.
It’s not as if evidence of Forney’s despicable views is hard to find, and not just in the WHTM archives. The name of his podcast contains the phrase “alt-right.” In the list of “popular posts” highlighted in the sidebar of his blog one finds such lovely titles as “How to Crush a Girl’s Self-Esteem” and “Why Fat Girls Don’t Deserve to Be Loved.” (Neither title is meant ironically.)
And then there is the endless stream of racist, misogynist and homophobic abuse that is his Twitter account. Some highlights from the last several days:
That last tweet — a reference to Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet’s practice of murdering people by throwing them from helicopters — is technically a death threat, aimed at a National Review writer who has gotten many such threats from Forney’s colleagues in the alt-right, including photoshopped images of his 7-year-old daughter being gassed in a Nazi death camp.
Are these really the sorts of people Jaye wants to align herself with?
In his “review” of The Red Pill, Milo claimed, without evidence, that a virtual army of feminists was “scrambling to stop Cassie Jaye” and her film. In fact, feminists have mostly ignored The Red Pill. And the person who has done the most to damage Jaye’s credibility is, well, Jaye herself.