Comedy

Why, as an Intersectional Feminist, I Can’t Get Behind the TV Land ‘Heathers’ Reboot

heathers-2

The television reboot will give marginalized people power that they don’t have in real life. As a result, they cast cis straight white people as the oppressed underclass. This misrepresentation of the real world will ultimately work to reinforce the fallacious idea that marginalized groups are “taking over” and gaining power over white, cis, straight, or otherwise privileged people. … I am not at all against a ‘Heathers’ reboot, but I want one that is progressive and intersectional, one that expands on the feminism of the original rather than scaling it back.

Does ‘Pitch Perfect’s Fat Amy Deserve to Be a Fat Positivity Mascot?

Pitch Perfect

It’s great to see a character whose fatness is a part of her identity without being a point of dehumanization, but the films try to make Fat Amy likable at the expense of other characters, positioning her as acceptably quirky, in contrast to the women of color, who are portrayed in a more two-dimensional manner, or Stacie, who is unacceptable due to her promiscuity. Ultimately, the underlying current of stereotype-based humor puts the film’s fat positivity in a dubious light…

‘Ghostbusters’: Yes, the Equations are Correct

Ghostbusters

As a woman in physics I have found that this experience encapsulates many of the issues of being a woman in a field dominated by men. I was very happy to see strong women on the screen and wanted to be a part of the effort… Ten years from now I hope to have an introductory physics course where I can’t count the women on one hand. I want the students to look at my framed thank you note from set dressing, ooh and ahh, and I will get to tell them that yes, those equations are right.

‘Lilo & Stitch,’ ‘Moana,’ and Disney’s Representation of Indigenous Peoples

'Lilo and Stitch' and 'Moana'

Looking at ‘Lilo & Stitch’ can provide a valuable lens in which to analyze the upcoming ‘Moana,’ as well as other mainstream films attempting to represent Indigenous cultures. … Regardless of its individual merits, ‘Lilo & Stitch’ is a moneymaking endeavor to benefit the Disney Company, which has not always had the best relationship (to say the least) with representing Indigenous cultures or respecting Indigenous peoples.

The Women of the New York Film Festival 2016

julietacover

The New York Film Festival (NYFF) wraps up this weekend. Here are the best of films about women or directed by women (or both) that still have NYFF weekend screenings (including some “encore” shows on Sunday) or are streaming or open today in theaters: including Ava DuVernay’s ’13th,’ Kelly Reichardt’s ‘Certain Women,’ and Pedro Almodóvar’s ‘Julieta.’

Bi Erasure in Film and TV: The Difficulty of Representing Bisexual People On-Screen

How to Get Away with Murder

As frustrating as our erasure and stereotyping is, however, I’d like to go beyond the question of “good” and “bad” representations of bisexual characters to ask this: exactly what it is about bisexuality which makes it so hard to represent on-screen? And why, when bisexuality is visible, is it so likely to collapse back into dominant stereotypes of bisexuality as either promiscuous or merely a phase?

‘Jennifer’s Body’ and Bisexuality

Jennifer's Body

We don’t have direct evidence of how Jennifer or Needy would describe their sexual orientations, but ‘Jennifer’s Body’ works as a depiction of the relationship between two young bisexual women. If nothing else, it subverts expectations around gender and sexuality in horror films. … Even when Jennifer and Needy resort to physical violence with each other, their conflict has an erotic, and even romantic, subtext.

Bisexuality in ‘Kissing Jessica Stein’ and ‘I Love You Phillip Morris’

I Love You Phillip Morris and Kissing Jessica Stein

Both films, then, arguably fit a wider cultural pattern of bi erasure, suggesting that bisexual characters must “resolve” themselves as either gay or straight. I would argue, however, that what marks ‘I Love You Phillip Morris’ and ‘Kissing Jessica Stein’ as something more nuanced and interesting than another tale of “inauthentic” bisexuality, is the subtlety with which they examine all sexual orientations as limited by our internalized need to socially perform.

Bisexuality and Masculinity in ‘Y Tu Mamá También’

Y Tu Mama Tambien

‘Y Tu Mamá También’ points out the elastic, freeing nature of femininity compared to the toxic, fragile nature of masculinity. Over the course of the film, Luisa only becomes a month or so older and finds truth, or at the very least solace for herself, while Julio and Tenoch go from brash young adults to estranged, closed-off adult men, refusing to come to terms with their bisexuality.

Sisterhood and Salvation in ‘A League of Their Own’

A League of Their Own

Though the simmering sibling rivalry between Kit and Dottie is a thread that runs through the entire film, the importance of sisterhood goes far beyond this. For both women, sisterhood becomes a ticket to another world: a ticket out, but also a ticket in; to friendship, to competition, and to independence. As such, sisterhood exists as a source of empowerment.

Sisterhood with a Capital “S”: ‘The Triplets of Belleville’

The Triplets of Belleville

Sisterhood is powerful, magical, and resilient: that’s the sororal message in the celebrated 2003 animated film… Character distinction between the sisters as individuals is not a major focus for writer/director Sylvain Chomet, although each Triplet has different functions/feelings at specific times. The bond of the sisters as a more monolithic force is depicted instead: Chomet presents the unity of sisterhood. … The agency of older women, including the eponymous trio, is vital to ‘The Triplets of Belleville.’

‘A League of their Own’: The Joy and Complexity of Sisterhood on a Baseball Field

A League of Their Own

The bond between the sisters is at the heart of the wartime baseball movie, directed by Penny Marshall… Their competitive nature is a motivation to be the best… It’s obvious that Dottie always seems to have one up on Kit, which sets up the relentless struggle of the spirited Kit who wants, finally, to be better than Dottie. … Kit and Dottie are the embodiment not just of sisterhood, but of the true nature of a teammate relationship.