52 Films by Women: A Summary

I attempted to watch 52 films directed by women last year in support of the movement and of the filmmakers in the industry. While I didn't get to accomplish the goal, it did make me a lot mindful of the films I watched, and have discovered some filmmakers whose works I have yet to see. Because of the challenge I did end up watching more female-directed work compared to any other year. Being mindful meant getting to watch gems, films I have been putting off for time and ended up loving them. I did also have a lot of misses, but nothing is ever perfect. 

This is part 1 of a two-part post: the first part being a general wrap up of the films I watched; the second part would be about filmmakers and certain films that I want to cross out of my watchlist this year.

Number of Films Watched: 43
This is more than I've ever watched in a given year, so even if I didn't reach 52 I'm going to give myself a pat on the shoulder. Out of the 43, 14 were 2018 releases, 3 were co-directed by women, and 8 were in another language other than English.  The directors whom I saw more than one film are Katharina Schode, Amy Heckerling, and Cathy Garcia-Molina. Directors whose others works I've seen before include Sofia Coppola, Anne Fletcher, Jennifer Yuh Nelson, Susanna Fogel, Julie Delphy, Suzi Yoonessi, Sanaa Hamri, Isabel Coixet, and Lone Scherfig.

Best Film: Marie Antoinette (Sofia Coppola)
Out of all the films I watched and loved, I decided to go with Marie Antoinette because this is a film that changed my mind about the filmmaker. Don't get me wrong, some of her films are really good but I don't find her films generally approachable. There are prolific directors whose films I have been reluctant to watch because my level of film appreciation isn't there, and I wouldn't give these films viewing justice. I used to feel that way about Coppola; she's not one to make popular films, and her well-known film isn't on an approachable scale. With Marie Antoinette, her style of filmmaking is still present, and coupled with the subject matter, the film becomes easy to absorb and digest, and in turn can serve as an introduction to viewing her previous and latter work. (review)

Favorite Film: To All the Boys I've Loved Before (Susan Johnson)
For the month that this film came out, I have been head over heels with it. It helps that Lana Condor and Noah Centineo has a strong onscreen chemistry and the romance story was really cute. This makes it as my favorite film because of the strong desire to rewatch it. This is basically my teen movie counterpart of Bridget Jones's Diary. (review)

Most Surprising Film: Maggie's Plan (Rebecca Miller)
Maggie's Plan was the most surprising because I didn't expect to like it as much as I did. It was a simple story and yet there's this subtle evil comic in Maggie. Her whole ordeal seems absurd and yet she just goes with it. There is something about Greta Gerwig's portrayal that makes Maggie tolerable, even if what she did could be seen as pure evil, and her solution after that would make you look at her in disbelief. There was something here that resonated with me, and I'm not sure if its telling of how I view romantic relationships. (review)

Most Disappointing Film: A Wrinkle in Time (Ava DuVernay)
I was expecting more from this film. It was visually stunning, but it could have been more - it should have been more. I wouldn't mind the film being longer if it meant getting a better or a satisfying ending, and good world-building.

Worst Film: All Roads Lead to Rome (Ella Lemhagen)
I never really know what to put as a 'worst film'. Is it the worst because it was so bad, or because you hated a lot about it? Even more, should a worst film be a film that you had good expectations of only for it to crash and burn? I don't really have much to say about this because it was not good. It's not even the entertaining kind of generic; it was bland and dull. Sarah Jessica Parker seems keen on playing similar characters that she's not even giving herself a change to show some range.

Honorable Mentions:

Miss Julie (Julia Hart)
6 Years (Hannah Fidell)
Blockers (Kay Cannon)

4 comments:

  1. This is an amazing challenge that you set yourself, well done on almost achieving 52 movies! There are a few here I haven't seen yet, Maggie's Plan in particular is one I've been meaning to see for a while now.
    Looking forward to Part 2 of your post :)

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    1. Thank you! Maggie's Plan was unexpected for me. I didn't expect to like it as much as I did, considering what I feel about Greta Gerwig's performances at times.

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  2. 43 is still a great number towards a goal of 52! I really hope I can watch more female directed films this year. I agree with you that A Wrinkle in Time is disappointing, especially when Duverney has directed things like Middle of Nowhere which was excellent. I don't think she's great with child actors.

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    1. As of writing this post, I am absolutely failing to keep up with the goal this year. I'm hoping to catch up before the year ends! A Wrinkle in Time could have been great, I was expecting a lot from it considering that DuVerney is an accomplished and prolific director.

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