A drama that tracks the story of the foot soldiers of the early feminist movement, women who were forced underground to pursue a dangerous game of cat and mouse with an increasingly brutal State. These women were not primarily from the genteel educated classes, they were working women who had seen peaceful protest achieve nothing. Radicalized and turning to violence as the only route to change, they were willing to lose everything in their fight for equality - their jobs, their homes, their children and their lives. Maud was one such foot soldier. The story of her fight for dignity is as gripping and visceral as any thriller, it is also heart-breaking and inspirational.Written by
The investigation of the suffragette movement was the first instance of law enforcement using photo surveillance of persons of interest. See more »
When Maud seeks out her son in the street after her husband has banished her, George spots her and runs up. She scoops him up into her arms and we see the soles of his shoes, which have modern plastic soles with the maker's embossing on them. See more »
And reason, said to her, "Silence. What do you hear?" And she said, "I hear the sound of feet. A thousand times, ten thousands of thousands of thousands and they beat this way." They are the feet of those that shall follow you. Lead on.
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This story of how in 1912 and 1913 British women fought for the right to vote is immensely worthy, technically accomplished and well-acted but, as cinema, it somehow fails to engage. At the conclusion of the movie, we are reminded that it was not until 1928 that full women's suffrage was achieved in the UK and even today women in a country like Saudi Arabia do not have the vote. The very act of creating this film is a contemporary testimony to female equality since, as well as all the lead acting roles, women fill the positions of writer (Abi Morgan) and director (Sarah Gavron) as well as producers (six out of the nine). The female domination of "Suffragette" serves to underline how few films ate directed and written by women and how underpaid female actors are compared to their male counterparts. The struggle for equality is not over.
Although the leadership of the suffragette movement came from middle-class women, Morgan has chosen to tell the story through the eyes of a working class laundry worker Maud Watts, wonderfully portrayed by Carey Mulligan - whom I have admired since her performance in "An Education" (2009) - who is brought into the movement by fellow worker Violet (Anne-Marie Duff). Other suffragettes are played by Helena Bonham- Carter (actually a descendant of a Prime Minister who opposed votes for women), Romola Garai (whose career does not seem to have taken off as much as she deserves), and - in an all too tiny cameo - Meryle Streep as Emmeline Pankhurst.
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