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Wonder Women! The Untold Story of American Superheroines (2012)

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Feature documentary exploring the concept of heroic women from the birth of the superhero in the 1940s to the TV and big screen action blockbusters of today. Heroic role models are ... See full summary »

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Title: Wonder Women! The Untold Story of American Superheroines (2012)

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Feature documentary exploring the concept of heroic women from the birth of the superhero in the 1940s to the TV and big screen action blockbusters of today. Heroic role models are important in childhood development, yet there are a dearth of these for girls. Wonder Woman provides a rare example of a female heroine who doesn't require rescue, determines her own missions, and possesses uniquely feminine values. Featuring Gloria Steinem, actors Lynda Carter and Lindsey Wagner, and a colorful cast of scholars, writers, and fans, the film challenges pop culture's gender biases by looking at how Wonder Woman's storyline changed over time while considering how women are rarely depicted as heroic, powerful, or world-changing. Written by Anonymous

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User Reviews

 
A Provocative Study of the Cultural image of Women
13 March 2012 | by (Austin, TX, United States) – See all my reviews

I was really pleased to come across Wonder Woman at the Austin's SXSW Film Festival. It pointed out a glaring contradiction that I'd never considered while watching Lynda Carter play Wonder Woman as a kid. Most of the superhero images in the comics and the movies are Batman, Superman, Spiderman, etc. Wonder Woman is essentially the only long-standing female superhero image. It speaks to a side of sexism that hasn't been widely discussed. Even today most of the heroic images remain primarily masculine. As they point out, it is important for girls to have empowering heroic images to build their self-confidence. Interestingly, these images are not static and change with the times. Wonder woman's image was much more heroic when the character emerged in the 1930s and 1940s and regressed to a much more domestic image in the 1950s before being revived as a result of the feminist movement in the 1970s. The film goes well beyond Wonder Woman to explore how feminine superhero images have evolved in more recent films and TV programs (Charlie's Angels, Alien, Thelma & Louise, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, etc.) The film does an excellent job of recovering a lost piece of cultural history. It would be excellent teaching tool for classes that explore feminism and cultural history.


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