I couldn’t sleep last night so I did what I always do and decided to watch movies. One of those films was Taxi Driver. I started to recall something about the movie from the writer and so I went on to the YouTubes to see if I could find the interview clip. While looking, I stumbled across a channel that inspired me to write this article. The YouTube channel is called Kino Corner and he pointed out something I was aware of, but hadn’t organized my thoughts on yet. I still haven’t and so this article may be a like shooting from the hip.

The theme of this screed, and his video essays, are the rise in what a lot of circles online refer to as the “Literally Me” genre of films. I know some of you have read, or heard, me use this term in articles, the comment section or on the Livestreams. If you have heard it before and seen it used in context, you may not get it, or think it’s used ironically. When it is used in irony, it is more often than not a case of ironic comedy being used to downplay.


So what are they? It is an arguably accidental, or unintentional, genre that isn’t as easy to point at as, say, superhero movies, Westerns, or horror but like porn, you know it when you see it.

“Literally Me” movies do what art is supposed to do. It touches people somewhere, It scratches an itch, it rubs that tired spot. Maybe they are even a pressure valve expressing something a growing number of the population can’t express to a growing population that wouldn’t listen anyway.

The film’s characters all say something about modernity and living it in current times. The heroes are always very flawed anti-heroes or even villains. A lot of them are just normal guys who snapped at various degrees. You ever watched a film and seen a lot of yourself in one of the characters?  I’m not talking about escapist fulfillment here either. Han Solo or Captain American doesn’t make the cut. These are not power fantasies or wish fulfillment even if some of that is in there.

Before we get into it further I will say you may not “get it” depending on your age and current plot in life right now. You may even love some of the movies we are going to talk about, If you don’t see what I’m taking about in them, that’s OK. You are probably close to my age or older, and have a wife, a steady job. kids and a mortgage and can’t relate in the same level any more than I can relate to the emotional reaction Star Wars fans have to that stuff. If that’s the case, maybe read on anyway and at least learn something new about your fellow film lovers.


Drive is an exemplar of this genre. Gosling seems to have a strange talent for being in these films. The Driver has a personality a large amount of young men can relate to.  He’s awkward, no bitches, very lonely, highly likely autistic, and prone to lash out. Obsessed with perfection in his interests, he lives on isolated fringes. Not because he wants to, we see him try to change his life and correct that throughout the movie.

He doesn’t get the girl and he ends up holding his guts in from a stab wound, but at least he knows he really is alive at the end. Blade Runner 2049 is another “Literally me” movie, and ends for Kay much like it does for Driver with the difference being Driver lives when Kay apparently dies.

Through the movie we see Kay’s pain and loneliness. He is so desperate for connection he even has a 3D anime waifu. His is the story of a guy who thought he could be something special but isn’t and he dies trying to change that anyway. Barbie has Ken, who is not very different even if its supposedly played comedic.

I’ve already discussed Barbie and the Ken character so I will skip that but you can bet your left nut Ken is a Literally Me character. Show me a teenage boy who can’t relate to that if they are honest.


Taxi Driver is another example. Travis is the original Incel. Alone, in misery, depressed. All he does is work and watch bad 70s porn movies on 42nd street. Out of touch with pop culture and with no real connections. His rage and disgust at modernity eat him alive. No one listens when he makes his only effort to get help. Luckily Travis channels his explosion into something good by saving Iris, even if it was his plan B.

Falling Down from the 90s only becomes more relevant as a “Literally Me” movie and I bet all of you can relate to D-fens. Out of the regulars in the comment section, I can only think of 2 that would watch this movie and not get that feeling of sympathetic melancholy when he says “I’m the bad guy? How’d that happen?

Nightcrawler from 2014 is a masterpiece of the highest order and is an instant classic of this genre. Lou Bloom is no hero but his station in life and his ruthless determination to escape it are relatable to a lot of young men right now. We are living the decline of the empire right now and Lou knows it. He has no problem adjusting his morality to adapt.

Lou has no friends and doesn’t even like people at all. His past life has obviously killed any capacity for caring about other people. Every interaction is a transaction or negotiation for him, he has read way too many self-help “how to succeed in business books”. Even though at the end Lou has hit success and will go further we all know he will never really be happy.

In American Psycho Pat Bateman doesn’t seem like he would fit this, at first glance. He has it all right? Maybe, but he still feels alone and alienated. The shallow world he lives in is killing him. It’s a solid bet Pat never touches grass. No one remembers his name or confuses him for some other 1 percent asshole. The women around him cheat on their partners or are literal whores.

His ostensible fiance doesn’t really care about him so much as their spot in their social circle. Money, looks and the social jockeying are the only things his world revolves around and he clearly doesn’t like it even if he doesn’t realize it. At the end of the movie, he still feels stuck and hopeless.

When it comes to Fight Club, no one who reads this website can look me in the eyes and say they can’t relate to the angst and misery of the fellas in this film. Even those who have their life solidly squared away  have had more than a few moments of relation to Norton’s character and want to be Durden. Is there may be no better movie for summing up what it’s like to be a man for most of us in 2023 and it’s only getting better with age. The message becoming more relevant as time passes just makes it more depressing lol.

I never have liked Batman or that world. I confess I never thought to look deeper at it and why so many guys like the characters of The Batman or The Joker. Then I realized why after being around several of my younger friends. Besides the vigilante stuff, the real appeal of Batman to them isn’t the capeshit. It’s Wayne when he isn’t pretending to be a rich playboy, or even Batman. It’s the real Wayne, inside, that they recognize in themselves. The Joker in the recent Phoenix movie hits all the right spots for this genre, doesn’t it? It’s obviously Travis Bickle in even more mental pain. The crazier things and people get, the more guys can relate to him, Just look how popular it is.

The Kid Detective is a personal favorite of mine. It has everything I like. The slob protagonist who had a great start with lots of potential but fails and it sets his entire life in a downward spiral. The guy is just going through the motions of life. Barely. When he “wins” the cost is pretty high with the beginning of a life of PTSD and dark thoughts.

Now there is The Killer(2023). I watched this and loved it, I recommended it to Heidi and while she was watching it she sent me a text message and said:

Oh God, this is another ‘literally me’ movie”

I stopped for a second and thought about it. Yeah, she’s right. The killer solidly falls into that category. A man that lives on the fringes, has no time for the normies, and has an autistic-like fixation on his job (love?) and doing it perfectly. He tries very hard to repress emotions because being softer has never gotten him anything in this world, but its obviously just a cope.

There are a lot more. One honorable mention goes to Rustin Cole from True Detective season 1. It’s not a film, but his characterm and the themes of the most perfect seasons of TV, can’t be denied

“Literally Me” has a common theme that I think most can relate to, at least one point in their lives. That audience has always existed and is growing every day as a result of the world we live in. While a lot of movies have characters people relate to, in this case the “Literally Me” audience refer to a specific type of movie and character. A character that reflects the large group that feels like they don’t have a place anymore, or can’t get in step with the rest of the world no matter how much they want to. A symptom of industrial society and it’s consequences, if you will.

There are indeed femoid “Literally Me” movies but I have to do some homework on that. Maybe if you liked this it can be part 2.



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