‘Final Portrait’ is entertaining, fun in parts, silly, and a bit melancholy. It is also deeply, inescapably misogynist, so lost in being impressed with male genius that it forgets that women are even human. Giacometti, it is suggested, hates women. And yet, by never properly addressing his hatred and his fear, so, it seems, does this film.
On the surface, a lot of his female characters reflect strong ideals. … But take a deeper look and Linklater’s female characters tell another story: one of a creator deeply obsessed with ignorant male stereotypes and the women that encourage them. … Looking back through his films, they all contain this running theme of underdeveloped man-children who are routinely validated in their anti-woman approach.
The notion of Catherine as a subversive anti-hero develops when you view the film not as a story about the supposed protagonist Detective Nick Curran but as Catherine’s journey from mind games to almost domestic bliss but always returning to her basic instincts which threatens the Hollywood happy ending of established heteronormativity.
Both Nacho Vigalondo’s monster movie, ‘Colossal,’ and William Oldroyd’s period piece, ‘Lady Macbeth,’ are solid, carefully-made films built around a stunning performance from their lead actors – Anne Hathaway and Florence Pugh, respectively – and both tell the story of a woman surrounded by men who try to control her. Rightly or wrongly, both films also seem to presume that the best way for women to be strong and empowered is through physical violence.
What is so terribly “weird and unnatural” … about Mary? While writer/director Herk Harvey and writer John Clifford may not have intended to make Mary a subversive woman, she certainly was in a few ways. … Keep in mind, her actions and her situation are supposed to be terrifying. Only because she was presumed to be dead could she act in ways “unfit” for a woman. Uncoupled, hardhearted, curt, and curious.
Instead it mashes these together to legitimize the misogyny of historical witch trials. … Those hoping for a nuanced 1630s witch tale, beware: ‘The Witch’ legitimizes fear of feminine sensuality while simplifying powerful female denizens to devil-worshiping pleasure-seekers.
Let’s All Calm Down for a Minute About ‘The Hateful Eight’: Analyzing the Leading Lady of a Modern Western
In an action movie, violence is due to befall all characters. Is violence against any female character inherently woman-hating, inherently misogynist? … It’s possible that subconscious sexism makes people quick to see her as a victim, and then criticism of the trope of women as victims may be getting in the way of seeing the agency and complexity of a character like Daisy Domergue.
The acts of violence by the female protagonists are terrifying, swift, and socially subversive. They target misogynistic representatives of the patriarchal society that oppresses and silences women, taking them out one by one.
So the only difference between Meg and Lois is that while Lois is forthcoming about her sexuality, she is attractive so it’s OK to see and hear about it because the audience (and creators) can shame her for it later, whereas Meg is presented as ugly/unattractive and therefore we don’t even want to hear or see her in any sexual way unless it’s making fun of her.
It’s hard to avoid the sense that this is a story about how the rich are in decline – how complacency has made them helpless and weak enough for the poor to pull them down. It’s hard to know if we’re supposed to think that John has the right idea by using Julie as a stepping stone to move toward his goals – if we’re supposed to think she deserves what she gets because she was stupid and drunk and coming onto him. The play seems to think so – Chastain and Ullmann seem to disagree – the movie itself seems to be a confused mixture of the two viewpoints.
But, at the end of the day—at the end of a lot of days—I’m tired of watching these shows and seeing women as props and symbols used to push the hero along his way. I’m tired of watching these shows and seeing the massive chasms between what they present, what they claim to represent, and what their fans insist they represent.
This is another one of the problems that I have with White Knight syndrome. The types prone to exhibiting this behavior tend to have a lower opinion of women that than their outwardly sexist counterparts. White Knights take up the causes of the women in their lives and speak out for them, but it is usually done in a manner that seems to suggest they think that these women are incapable of speaking up for themselves.