PEARTREE LIFE: Experiencing Languages

Movie culture: The struggle to satisfy basic requirements of equality

Have you ever watched a movie only to find out afterwards that there were basically no female leads to the story? Many movies, especially in the genre of action movies, seem to revolve solely on one male main character who single-handedly saves the world from impending doom. Namely ones in a Mission Impossible style, as well as most superhero movies and other similar works, struggle to show much diversity in this regard. Though that is arguably a solid plot idea with a good chance to be entertaining, we often fail to put women in film who actually portray just as much character as their male counterparts.

Presented with this problem, the American cartoonist Alison Bechdel created a comic strip in her famous work “Dykes to watch out for”. The passage below shows how the Bechdel Test (1985) was born.
To pass and show a movie is equal in male and female representation, it needs to pass three requirements:
1. The movie has to have at least two named women in it,
2. who talk to each other (dialogue)
3. about something besides a man.

Which sounds very like a rather low bar but actually shows what basic requirements regularly aren’t met by big productions.

So which new movies pass the test and which don’t? 
- The entire ‘Lord of the Rings’ Trilogy does not pass 
- Finding Nemo does not pass
- Ferris Bueller's Day Off passes
- The Shape of Water passes
- Lara Croft: Tomb Raider does not pass
- The Post (2017) passes
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About Peartree Languages

Peartree Languages is a language school located in Cardiff.


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