It's hardly a well-kept secret that Hollywood is a boys' club. The statistics prove, time and time again, that even when award season celebrates diverse stories, it's more so men who are the ones most often starring in, directing, and even shooting our blockbusters. Yet what people might not realise is that film criticism is just as dominated by men. Per a study by the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film at San Diego State University, 73% of the top critics on popular review aggregating site, Rotten Tomatoes, are male.
What’s exciting is that an alternative has been proposed, and it puts female film-going opinion front and centre. Cherrypicks (launching soon) is a forthcoming aggregation website created by Miranda Bailey, a director, producer, actor, and film distributor with Rebecca Odes, an author and entrepreneur.
The service, which will launch as a multi-platform website later this year, promises to offer a “system that more accurately represents the range of critical and audience opinion, along with high-quality content from both established and new critical female voices.”
So this got us thinking – wouldn’t it be great to have our very own #oliviaandpearl regular female review of all things theatre, silver and small screen. We are therefore on the hunt to recruit a savvy, passionate film & arts buff to join the team as our #thepearlgirl Online Content Collaborator. This is an exciting position for someone who wants to gain experience in writing, content creation and publishing. Please email your CV and covering email to info@oliviaandpearl and we will respond with the job spec.
Thelma & Louise was originally advertised as a light-hearted female buddy pic (see the original trailer, which I initially mistook for a parody). It smuggled its politics in under the guise of two happy-go-lucky gals taking a road trip together; the trailer did not even hint at its darker core. But this was no romp—it was revolutionary, the first film in a long time to tell the truth about women's lives. Not only did it star two women, but their friendship was the film's central subject, the story was written by a woman, and those stars were, at the time, 35 and 45—well past their prime by Hollywood's ever-narrowing standards of physical perfection. Though portrayed as sexually attractive, Davis and Sarandon had more to do than sit around looking pretty. If you haven’t watched it, clear tonight’s schedule you’re in for a treat.
Ladybird, probably my favourite film from this season, starring Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf who are electric as warring daughter and mother in Greta Gerwig’s beautifully observed comedy-drama. It is a magical coming of age portrait which gave Greta Gerwig’s her first Oscar nomination, and she is now the fifth woman ever to be nominated for a best director Oscar.
I Tonya tells the story of talented figure skater Tonya Harding who becomes the first American woman to complete a triple axel during a competition. In 1994, her world comes crashing down when her ex-husband conspires to injure Nancy Kerrigan, a fellow Olympic hopeful, in a poorly conceived attack that forces the young woman to withdraw from the national championship. Harding's life and legacy instantly become tarnished as she's forever associated with one of the most infamous scandals in sports history. Margot Robbie leads from the front of the camera, playing the title character of figure skater Tonya Harding, but also from behind it, as producer.
Happy Friday & enjoy!
Olivia & Team x