Have you noticed that feminist films (or feminist appropriate films) are having a bit of a moment? I most definitely have because for the last 18 months (debatably even longer) the cinema has been awash with strong female characters, making for films that tick many a feminist box and hence making for feminist films. They are nowhere near perfect and Hollywood, like many industries, is still in dire need of a makeover but the recent explosion of what I like to call “feminist appropriate films” definitely makes Hollywood seem willing to change and that in itself is progress.
These are not the fabled characters of old, characters that required rescuing, characters that were passive and characters that were incredibly unrealistic. The new female lead is quite the opposite because the modern lead is strong, fearsome and often spends her time rescuing her male counterparts. It’s a change that is utterly modern, refreshingly honest and necessary for changing how woman are perceived in modern day culture.
I bet you could easily name me at least three films that meet the above requirements but you don’t have to because these are just three films that get my seal of approval.
The Hunger Games // I can bet my bottom dollar that you were already thinking about this dystopian trilogy and you can’t get more inspiring than the action packed cracker that is Katniss Everdeen. On more than one occasion we witness her life-saving antics and throughout the film she is portrayed as the strong heroine, who always rescues the men. She’s a breath of fresh air in to damsel obsessed industry.
Divergent // Another divergent-series-review and one that is likely to keep you gripped from start to finish and while it’s unique in it’s own way it has a lot in common with the Hunger Games series. The strong female lead is unapologetically fierce and is without a doubt the hero of the story. In her romantic relationship she is an equal to her partner and not the submissive victim. It’s nice to see an action film with a strong female lead and one that is not afraid to take control of the situation. Essentially she is my kinda girl.
Frozen // I am a huge Disney fan, I love their ability to transport you back to your childhood and whatever the weather Disney films always manage to make me smile, but by and large they are hardly the most egalitarian of films. On the whole the women in Disney tend to subscribe to the old notion of femininity and tend to be damsels who require rescuing. However recently they too have shifted from this outdated image and Frozen in-particular represented a substantial change in how Disney portray their female leads. It doesn’t surprise me that it was an overnight success, offering a new vision and inspiring young woman to be strong, independent and powerful. The Queen is single and is far more concerned with more important matters (ya know like not turning everyone in to an Olaf and ruling the country) and getting married is the last thing on her mind. I love that “true love’s kiss” has a different meaning in this film, representing a sisterly bond as opposed to a romantic connection as favoured by traditional Disney movies. This is modern feminity and it bloody rock!
What films would you add?