Aubrey Plaza and Rachel Bilson in "The To Do List"
As a movie lover, I’m used to being frustrated, insulted and bored with female characters. Truly, there are few things quite as annoying as being asked to ignore everything I know and believe to be true about women for two hours, as most movies ask me to do. Then a breath of fresh air in a sea of films featuring damsels in distress, and women who exist solely for the gratification of immature guys appeared on Friday night. It’s more formally being referred to as “The To Do List.”
This indie film centers around the story of Brandy Clark (played by Aubrey Plaza), a multidimensional female protagonist whose on-screen journey to sexual self-discovery revolves around her growth as …
A few weeks ago, I went to see the movie Bad Teacher (not my choice, okay?). A preview for the movie 30 Minutes or Less came on. The movie is about a guy who gets a bomb strapped to his chest by guys in gorilla suits and is forced to rob a bank. It stars Jesse Eisenberg, AKA The Guy Who Played The Guy Who Created Facebook. I was putting the movie into my “Not exactly a must-see, but if someone else was insistent on seeing it with me, it wouldn’t be the end of the world” category, when I was hit with a joke that was distinctly unfunny.
The two main characters were at the supermarket, buying some supplies for their bank robbery, which include masks, duct tape, etc. …
I love the Women's Media Center. If you've never heard of them, you should probably check them out immediately because they're doing some really wonderful work making women more visible and powerful in the media. To learn more about what they do, click here or read my interview with Carol Jenkins, the WMC's founding President, here. The video I want to feature today, though, is from when the WMC went to the Sundance Film Festival to raise awareness about gender disparity in filmmaking. Good stuff.
the divorcee: a great example of an empowered woman in pre-code film
Pre-production code films were made from 1929-1934. They were interesting, because they explored subjects that would be relevant in today’s society. They had themes of violence, drug abuse, and sexuality. The thing that was so “naughty” about these films was that most of the sexual encounters were controlled by women. The actresses in these movies gave strong performances as intelligent, independent, and, yes, sexual people. The roles were such departures from the housewife/stereotypical characters women usually played in classic cinema.
There were some great actresses in pre-code films. There was Norma Shearer, Greta Garbo, and Barbara Stanwyck. Actresses got to personify the promiscuity of the typical “male stereotype,” and turn it into many complex characters …
Here on the FBomb we talk a lot about pop-culture, including women and movies. The Bechdel Test addresses this very topic and is something every good teenage feminist should be informed about. Once you're aware of the test - and actually use it to analyze films - it's CRAZY how many movies are male-centric. Watch, learn and support women-centric films!