Y’all know I’m a self-confessed height-Nazi. At one point in my life, I considered having a note on my profile saying only candidates over 6 ft need apply. But then I read a bloke’s profile which said : ‘if you ask me my height, I’ll ask you your waist size’. Fair doos. Furthermore, 20/20 hindsight showed me that had I declared my arbitrary height requirements I’d never have dated that 5’10 guy that took me on my dream date to the library! Regardless, I still know that deep down in my heart, height matters. Sure, I may now choose to refrain from stating my requirements on my dating profiles, but i speak from experience I can say its very rare that I find myself attracted to a vertically challenged man (… a guy who was my height attempted a forehead kiss, it was an awkward peck on the lips. No. Just. No). Anyway, the fact is that in this age of modern dating height does matter. The fact that adequately tall men will declare their height (Bumble also lets people add it as a prominent criteria on their profile) is proof of this, if you ask me.
So, regardless of whether you think it’s fair or not, height is a legit deal breaker for a lot of people. That said, I’ve always thought of it as more of a problem for vertically challenged guys, than for us ladies (although, we probably face more discrimination in the horizontal direction not to mention other important areas of life – so I guess BIG MEN can deal with this one thing). But what happens when you are an exceptionally tall woman (with man size feet to boot)? Well, that’s exactly what the cleverly titled Tall Girl is all about.
Tall Girl is a new Netflix movie which tells the tale of a teenage girl called Jodi, who towers above most of her peers at 6’1. Despite being a smart kid from a stable home, at school Jodi is mocked for being a giant every day and has to shrug off a whole host of ‘tall’ jokes such as ‘How’s the weather up there?’ . Like many awkward teenagers, Jodi spends most of her time trying to get through life (read: school) without being noticed, which is understandably difficult considering she towers over the crowd so you can spot her a mile off. It doesn’t help that her sister (and mother) were both beauty pageant types (although to buck the stereotype her sister is actually a super sweet person!). Beyond her family, she has one sassy friend, Fareeda, who always sticks up for her and is around to give her a pep talk. Then there is this one short but sweet guy who has been crushing on Jodi forevermore, but yeah just like most chicks (regardless of height) she is just not into short guys (see I still think the guys have it worse when it comes to this). So, yup, Jodi’s teenage life is pretty mundane. That is until the arrival of Stig, the (supposedly) good looking TALL Swedish exchange student. Being the exotic specimen (non-American), he quite predictably causes disruption to the established high-school social hierarchy and simultaneously forces our ‘Tall Girl’ to reassess he situation.
To be honest, this movie is nothing new. Typical American high-school story, really. Jocks, cheerleaders, nerds and the odd outspoken activist type. Unlike other such stories, I somehow don’t feel that many people will feel drawn to the protagonist of the story. She is wealthy, smart and has a family that go out of their way to boost her confidence (her dad organised a TALL people convention to show Jodi that she wasn’t alone in the world) and still witters on about how it sucks to be tall. I’m sure she could make the best of it if she tried….buying booze, getting into da club despite being underage and I’m sure she wouldn’t struggle to get a spot on the high-school basketball team.
Of course, most of us were probably guilty of being somewhat self-obsessed as teenagers but in this case it feels very much a case of #firstworldproblems. And while I think the height issue is legit, I think this movie failed to make people sympathetic to the cause. I’m not sure whether it was to do with the story being pretty superficial, the protagonist not being particularly endearing or simply that fact that only a very small minority of women can likely identify with the ‘tall girl’ problem unlike ‘fat/geeky/socially-awkward girl’ issues that perhaps more of us have had first hand experience with.
So all in all the movie is pretty unremarkable. I wouldn’t waste over an hour on your life on it. With the height issue most definitely being a legitimate criteria for judging potential suitors, I think a movie like this could have tackled the issue more effectively but by now I should probably have come to learn that Netflix movies aimed at a teenage audience aren’t really going to be that high-brow. Oh well.
So Rinsers…. Have you exposed your self to Tall Girl or any other terrible Netflix movie content in recent weeks? Do you consider height an important criterion when sifting through the cesspool of online dating prospects? If so, what is you arbitrary height requirement for your future beau/belle? Do you think its fair to judge people on a something they can’t control (although I have heard growth hormones are a thing!) or is being Height-IST just as bad as being racist? Or are you a real life tall girl? Do you feel overlooked because of it or have you embraced your height to your advantage? And finally, who really has it worse when it comes to height issues – the vertically challenged guys or the girls that can reach the high shelves? Let’s discuss in the comments below.