Category Archives: Movies

In which Caperton indulges in a moment of feminism-adjacent (if that) nerd rage

[Content note: Very little, if anything, to do with feminism, and everything to do with Caperton taking advantage of an available forum]

You’ll have to pardon me for a moment, because a significant facet of my childhood has been mishandled much in the manner of a 19th century Spanish fresco. And yes, the imperfect yet beautiful original is the Jem cartoon, and yes, the nightmare-inducing Hodor-Jesus restoration is the Jem and the Holograms live-action movie. Continue reading

Posted in Movies | 22 Comments

The pressing question of Scarlett Johansson’s underwear

In honor of today’s U.S. release of Avengers: Age of Ultron (since we don’t do sequel numbers now, just subheads), I thought I’d share an interview with Scarlett Johansson about the nuances of her character, the Black Widow, in light of her backstory as an orphan, trafficked as a young child, brainwashed and forced into service but now using the skills that were imposed upon her for an arguably, but not entirely, noble cause.

J/K! It’s about whether or not she can wear underwear under her tight costume. Continue reading

Posted in Celebrity, Feminism, Movies | 1 Comment

EXCLUSIVE – Full transcript of “India’s Daughter” [WIP]…

Today is International Women’s Day, and whilst Feministe has historically received flak for sometimes myopic, U.S.-centric feminism, today’s post is at the globetrotting end of the spectrum. Were you disappointed by recent news that India’s misogynists have succeeded in intimidating England’s BBC into actively pulling Leslee Udwin’s rape culture documentary from YouTube’s servers in California? Long story short, India’s Daughter is now considered contraband, much like vibrators in Alabama. So we sat and laboriously typed up a transcript of Udwin’s film, in all its damning glory… Continue reading

Posted in Movies, Rape Culture, Sexual Assault | 19 Comments

Q&A: Crowdfunding feminism into media…

Women’s representation in media is actually growing worse, not better, and women still comprise a fraction of directors off-screen. Unsurprisingly, some of the more feminist media we’ve seen in recent years – Tropes vs. Women, Veronica Mars and Hunting Ground – have been funded through alternative means or produced independently, to avoid creative interference by misogynistic studio suits. In this post, I interview one woman who’s ended up using the crowdfunding model to work on her upcoming Slut: A Documentary FilmContinue reading

Posted in Movies, Rape Culture, Sexual Assault | 3 Comments

Fifty Shades of Sexual Assault: Y’all, I told you.

[Trigger warning for rape]

A University of Illinois student is facing charges for sexual assault after, he says, trying to re-enact a scene from — yup — Fifty Shades of Grey. Mohammad Hossain is accused of sexually assaulting a fellow student in his dorm room Saturday night, Christian-Grey-with-a-belt-in-the-Red-Room-of-Pain style. Continue reading

Posted in Movies, Popular Culture, Sexual Assault | Tagged , | 54 Comments

The Oscars: A Twitter-Eye View

I didn’t watch the Oscars because nobody was paying me to, but I did follow my friends watching them on Twitter, and here is what I gather: 1) Patricia Arquette made the stupidest white mainstream feminist plea for equal pay … Continue reading

Posted in Entertainment, Feminism, Law, Movies, Popular Culture, Racism | Tagged , | 62 Comments

Q&A: Rape, documentary filmmaking and triggers…

Millennials, social media and damning federal investigations are reshaping rape culture’s topography, as more women push back against a culture that loves protecting rapists and vilifying victims. One survivor of childhood slut-shaming opted to make her experience public, posting her diary from childhood online. And after hearing from other women their harrowing encounters with rape culture and victim-blaming, she decided to try making a documentary about rape culture itself. This post stems from Feministe’s interview with the accidental feminist filmmaker behind Slut: A Documentary FilmContinue reading

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Just a few reminders before you buy those “50 Shades” Valentines

[Trigger warning for sexual violence and emotional abuse]

Valentine’s Day is coming up! That day of romance, of togetherness, of coupledom, of… domestic abuse… Valentine’s Day is the release date of 50 Shades of Grey, that sensationalistic movie based on the “How to Spot an Abuser” pamphlet in your college guidance counselor’s office. Women and men who have read the book and know perfectly well what the story is about will flock to theatres, either a) dreaming of the day that they’ll be stalked and violated by someone as dreamy as Christian, or b) hoping to score on Valentine’s night with the person they took to the movie. And while people are free to get their rocks off to whatever they want (within certain limits), it’s important to acknowledge that what may (for some reason) come across as sultry and sexy on the page would, in real life, be a Razorbacks halftime show’s worth of red flags. Continue reading

Posted in Domestic Violence, Holidays & Celebrations, Literature, Movies, Rape Culture, Sexual Assault | Tagged , , | 94 Comments

Get Me out of this Forest!: A Feminist Critique of Into the Woods

Guest Blogger Alex Ketchum is a PhD candidate in the Department of History at McGill University.

Audiences and critics alike appear enamored with director Rob Marshall’s cinematic adaptation of Stephen Sondheim’s 1987 musical Into The Woods. However, no one seems to be talking about the misogyny within its plot. Continue reading

Posted in Gender, Movies | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

“Fame-inism” for the rest of us

So. “Beyonce feminism.” Roxane Gay is against it. (Annie Lennox, too.) Continue reading

Posted in Celebrity, Entertainment, Feminism, Media & Media Literacy, Movies, Music | Tagged , , | 23 Comments

Robin Williams open thread

[Content note: Suicide and mental illness]

Yesterday, after a long battle with depression, Robin Williams took his own life. He left behind a family that loved him dearly and a legion of fans who loved having someone to make them laugh and cry and think, even as he himself was so frequently in a dark place. He made kids’ movies with jokes that only adults would get, he made movies for adults that made you forget he was the genie from Aladdin, he made a few zany comedies that possibly made you stupider just by watching them but were so entertaining that who cares, and he made people feel better. He gave joy. Continue reading

Posted in Celebrity, Health, Movies | Tagged | 20 Comments

“Strength” of Character: How the Silver Screen Perpetuates Gender Stereotypes

What do we mean when we define a female character as “strong”? When an actress is the protagonist, her conflict is decidedly different than the average male protagonist’s: In literary terms, we often see the female protagonist engaged in a “man vs. self” struggle, while male protagonists wrestle with outside forces. The point is not at all that any one iteration of female “strength” is more admirable – more worthy of depiction on-screen – than another, but rather than our female characters consistently demonstrate one kind of strength while our male characters demonstrate another. Furthermore, when our female characters demonstrate stereotypically “male” strength, they do not win the awards.

These complications of storytelling are all exacerbated by Hollywood demographics : Continue reading

Posted in Art, Gender, Guest Blogging, Media & Media Literacy, Movies | Tagged , , , , | 26 Comments