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12 articles


Where Are the Women? Son of a Gun

8 hours ago

The contradictions of mainstream film’s treatment of women are built into the weft of this story: they’re perfect, yet not worthy of personhood of their own.

Click here for the ongoing ranking of 2015’s films for female representation.

Note: This is not a “review” of Son of a Gun! It is simply an examination of how well or how poorly it represents women. (A movie that represents women well can still be a terrible film; a movie that represents women poorly can still be a great film.) Read my review of Son of a Gun.

See the full rating criteria. (Criteria that do not apply to this film have been deleted in this rating for maximum readability.)

This rating is brought to you without paywall restrictions by my generous Kickstarter supporters. If you missed out on the Kickstarter and would like to support this project, you may:

• become »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Son of a Gun movie review: wholesale cinematic heist

8 hours ago

Misogynistic, predictable, crammed with tonal shifts, and devoid of likable characters. Another young filmmaker has taken all the wrong cues from Hollywood. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

It’s like Starred Up — the harrowing British film about a teenager sent to adult prison before he’s legally old enough for it — except here landing in an adult prison turns out to be a good career and personal move for a young man. It all starts out intense and harrowing, as young Jr (Brenton Thwaites: The Giver) finds himself among hardened violent felons while serving a few months on an unspecified but obviously minor offense; let’s just say that regular rape shouldn’t be part of any criminal punishment. Soon, he is helping vaguely legendary criminal Brendan (Ewan McGregor: Mortdecai) escape and joining him »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Where Are the Women? Trash

13 hours ago

As usual, engaging in a daring adventure is something only boys get to do.

Click here for the ongoing ranking of 2015’s films for female representation.

Note: This is not a “review” of Trash! It is simply an examination of how well or how poorly it represents women. (A movie that represents women well can still be a terrible film; a movie that represents women poorly can still be a great film.) Read my review of Trash.

See the full rating criteria. (Criteria that do not apply to this film have been deleted in this rating for maximum readability.)

This rating is brought to you without paywall restrictions by my generous Kickstarter supporters. If you missed out on the Kickstarter and would like to support this project, you may:

• become a monthly or yearly subscriber of FlickFilospher.com

• make a pledge at Patreon

• make a donation via Paypal

»

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Trash movie review: you know, for kids?

14 hours ago

This isn’t a children’s movie… and yet it kind of is, too, with its odd mishmash of social realism, action thrills, misplaced comedy, and simplistic drama. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

I have not read the source material

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

The police in Rio de Janeiro “treat poor people like trash.” So says young teen Raphael (Rickson Tevez), in case you hadn’t already grasped the double entendre of the title. When Raphael discovers a really nice, surely accidentally discarded wallet while working as a trash picker in a massive Rio landfill, he shares the cash with his pal Gardo (Eduardo Luis), and then the two are off on a sort of treasure hunt to unravel the meaning of the other mysterious items in the wallet, including a train-station locker key, photos of a little girl, »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Where Are the Women? the 2014 Oscar-nominated films ranked

28 January 2015 2:31 PM, PST

A ranking the 2014 Oscar-nominated films for their representation of girls and women. These are not “reviews” of the films! These are simply examinations of how well or how poorly they depict girls and women. (A movie that represents women well can still be a terrible film; a movie that represents women poorly can still be a great film. My reviews are linked from each rating page.)

See the rating criteria.

Ratings to come for:

Begin Again

Beyond the Lights

Birdman

The Boxtrolls

Boyhood

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Finding Vivian Maier

Foxcatcher

Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me

Gone Girl

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Guardians of the Galaxy

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

How to Train Your Dragon 2

Ida

Inherent Vice

Into the Woods

The Judge

Last Days in Vietnam

The Lego Movie

Leviathan

Maleficent

Mr. Turner

Nightcrawler »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Where Are the Women? Big Hero 6

28 January 2015 2:30 PM, PST

I wish the protagonist had been female, but at least there are lots of individualized women in supporting roles… most of them gender-blind to boot.

Click here for the ranking of 2014’s Oscar-nominated films for female representation.

Click here for the ongoing ranking of 2015’s films for female representation.

Note: This is not a “review” of Big Hero 6! It is simply an examination of how well or how poorly it represents women. (A movie that represents women well can still be a terrible film; a movie that represents women poorly can still be a great film.) Read my review of Big Hero 6.

See the full rating criteria. (Criteria that do not apply to this film have been deleted in this rating for maximum readability.)

This rating is brought to you without paywall restrictions by my generous Kickstarter supporters. If you missed out on the Kickstarter and would like to support this project, »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Big Hero 6 movie review: how to train your robot

28 January 2015 1:38 PM, PST

Joyous and exhilarating. A fresh and funny animated adventure that subverts genre clichés at every turn. I’m “biast” (pro): nothing

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

Superhero origin stories are ubiquitous in our comic-book-happy pop culture, but none of them has been as sheerly, simply delightful as Big Hero 6… maybe because it barely feels like an origin story at all. Oh, all the familiar elements are here, in this gorgeously animated Disney flick: a young genius tormented by grief; high-tech gadgets; a complex villain; funny sidekicks. But the movie is so utterly unself-conscious that even the moments of self-referential humor — the kind that are inevitable when one of the superteam is a big ol’ geek who has been actively trying to reinvent himself as a comic-book character — play like something we’ve never seen before. (You’d probably »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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new and ongoing dvd & streaming releases, Us/Can/UK, from Jan 26-27

27 January 2015 3:57 AM, PST

A simple listing, duplicated from the homepage, of new releases and other stuff currently available, for the benefit of those playing along by RSS or keeping up via the Daily Digest emails.

new Us/Can Jan 27    streaming only Nightcrawler Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day Cyber-Seniors The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby The Humbling Song One    dvd/streaming Fury The Judge My Old Lady The Book of Life Before I Go to Sleep Open Windows Art and Craft new UK Jan 26    streaming only Dracula Untold The Way He Looks Magic in the Moonlight Gone Girl    dvd/streaming Honeymoon The Boxtrolls The Equalizer Draft Day Night Train to Lisbon Think Like a Man Too What We Did on Our Holiday Wish I Was Here

more recent releases Us/Can    streaming only Advanced Style The Babadook Belle Camp X-ray Dear White People Dracula Untold Force Majeure Frequencies Laggies (aka »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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help bring What We Do in the Shadows to theaters across the Us

27 January 2015 2:33 AM, PST

I’ve already seen a fair number of the films that will be eligible for 2015’s major awards, and so far, none of them is better or funnier than the absolutely brilliant What We Do in the Shadows. (It had a U.K. release in 2014, which is how I saw it.) The film is currently slated for a very tiny U.S. release next month — just one screen in New York and another in Los Angeles — which is being organized by the stars and filmmakers, Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi.

Now, they’re trying to raise money on Kickstarter to bring the film to many more audiences in the U.S.:

Frankly, I’m astonished that they need to resort to this sort of campaign. The film is hardly a tough sell — it’s not at all “arthouse” or “foreign” — and I can’t believe that no American studio »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Pump documentary review: it’s a gas

26 January 2015 1:45 PM, PST

You will be shocked, I am sure, to discover that Big Oil has put its profits before all else (including you). I’m “biast” (pro): nothing

I’m “biast” (con): nothing

(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)

So, remember how, in Who Framed Roger Rabbit, the big bad villainy was tied up in how Big Oil was bent on destroying Los Angeles’s wonderful trolley system in order to force everyone to drive automobiles? That really is basically what happened in the United States after World War II: Big Oil had to find new ways to ensure its revenue stream, and mass transit that didn’t run on oil (such as electric trolleys) got pushed out in favor of those that did (such as buses), and in favor — oh dear god yes in favor — of cars. Pump covers that nasty historical tidbit. And if you »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Where Are the Women? Ex Machina

26 January 2015 4:16 AM, PST

Sleek futuristic imagery aside, this is a regressive representation of sexualized, victimized womanhood that’s meant to be titillating.

Click here for the ongoing ranking of 2015’s films for female representation.

Note: This is not a “review” of Ex Machina! It is simply an examination of how well or how poorly it represents women. (A movie that represents women well can still be a terrible film; a movie that represents women poorly can still be a great film.) Read my review of Ex Machina.

See the full rating criteria. (Criteria that do not apply to this film have been deleted in this rating for maximum readability.)

This rating is brought to you without paywall restrictions by my generous Kickstarter supporters. If you missed out on the Kickstarter and would like to support this project, you may:

• become a monthly or yearly subscriber of FlickFilospher.com

• make a pledge at Patreon »

- MaryAnn Johanson

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Where Are the Women? Mortdecai

26 January 2015 3:33 AM, PST

Oh, there are lots of women here. And they’re either anonymous slavering sex machines or ridiculous perfect goddesses elevated on an absurd pedestal.

Click here for the ongoing ranking of 2015’s films for female representation.

Note: This is not a “review” of Mortdecai! It is simply an examination of how well or how poorly it represents women. (A movie that represents women well can still be a terrible film; a movie that represents women poorly can still be a great film.) Read my review of Mortdecai.

See the full rating criteria. (Criteria that do not apply to this film have been deleted in this rating for maximum readability.)

This rating is brought to you without paywall restrictions by my generous Kickstarter supporters. If you missed out on the Kickstarter and would like to support this project, you may:

• become a monthly or yearly subscriber of FlickFilospher.com

• make a »

- MaryAnn Johanson

Permalink | Report a problem


12 articles



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