Not just for passionate movie fans

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plappen's review of Gwendolyn Audrey Foster, Disruptive Feminisms

★★★★★

“Not just for passionate movie fans”

Written on: 03/12/2015 by plappen (119 reviews written)

Disruptive Feminisms: Raced, Gendered and Classed Bodies in Film, Gwendolyn Audrey Foster, 2015, ISBN 9781137597670

This book looks at several films that explore issues like class, gender, patriarchy and income inequality without being overwhelming about it.

Post Tenebras Lux is a recent Mexican film about two families, one rich and one poor, attempting to survive in present-day Mexico. It is one of those films that has a rather flexible border between fantasy and reality, and leaves a lot of interpretation up to the viewer. A person could watch the film several times, and have several different interpretations. That may be why, at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival, it received mixed reviews, and the Best Director Award.

Made in the early 1950's, The Hitch-Hiker is about a pair of war buddies who tell their wives that they are going camping for several days. They are actually planning several days of drinking and carousing. That is because they despise their new post-war lives of consumer and office worker. The buddies run into a homicidal maniac who may, or may not, be a repressed, self-loathing homosexual. Being the 1950's, the violence is more implied than actual, but this is still a very dark film. Bottled Up is a more recent independent film set in upstate New York. A grown woman is addicted to prescription painkillers, and her mother has no problem in enabling her, even faking injuries to get her own prescriptions. The daughter has no interest in trying to kick the habit.

In the early days of television, there was an actress with a couple of very popular, but short-lived, shows that spoke to women as real people, and not just as consumers. Her name was Betty White. She was willing to portray women having real thoughts and feelings, including of a sexual nature. The show's sponsor was not in agreement, so the shows were turned into your average sitcoms, and ultimately cancelled.

This is a very interesting book, not just for passionate movie fans. It is recommended for those dealing with issues like sexism and ageism. It is very much worth reading for everyone.

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