One of the many positives about Lisa Cholodenko’s movie The Kids Are All Right is the prominence of Mark Ruffalo’s hairy chest.
His character as sperm donor Dad is , as his ‘son’ observes, someone who is “into himself”.
In other words, his prominent body (and facial) hair is not a result of slobbishness but a sign of virility and symbolic of his back to the garden values.
It would be good if this started a trend away from the body fascism that conditions audiences into associating waxed torsos with true manhood; a trend that has seen James Bond stripped of his body hair with Daniel Craig’s smooth pecs a marked contrast to the natural charms of Sean Connery .
I’m not against a bit of home grooming. After hitting 50, the hair displacement from head to ears, nose and back needs to be controlled but going the whole hog with a full Brazilian, or Hollywood, wax is not for me. I’m happy to trim my rug but pass on having to endure the pain of a monthly epilation. Ruffalo makes me feel better about this life choice and shows that hairiness and manliness are not mutually exclusive concepts.