Saturday, August 19, 2017

But I Digress... Bad Ass Female Movie Characters

By: Selina

Last week I pointed out 25 television shows that have some seriously bad ass women characters. Today, we’re going to move along to movies.

Just like last week’s list, though… I am well aware that there are hundreds of lists with this basic idea. So, I’ll be avoiding the commonly noted films from those other lists. Just because those movies are not on my list, doesn’t mean anything other than I’m trying to avoid telling you something you can learn anywhere else.

Among the films you will not see on this post are: Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992), Resident Evil (2002-2017), Serenity (2005), Tank Girl (1995), The Hunger Games (2012-2015), Alien (1979-2019), Kill Bill (2003-2004), The Fifth Element (1997), Blade: Trinity (2004), Star Wars (1977-2018), Underworld (2003-2016), Tomb Raider (2001-2018), The Marvel Universe Films – regardless of production company (1986-), G.I. Jane (1997), Kick Ass (2010-2013), Domino (2005), Atomic Blonde (2017), Mulan (1998), Erin Brockovich (2000), Pirates of the Caribbean (2003-2017), The Cabin in the Woods (2012), and Star Trek (1979-2016).

For a full explanation of what I consider to be ‘bad ass,’ you can hop over to last week’s article and read the introduction.

Fair Warning: Some of the following entries will have SPOILERS. Read at your own discretion.

30 – The Gamers: Dorkness Rising (2008)

Viewing Options: Amazon
Director: Matt Vancil
Writer: Matt Vancil
Actors: Nathan Rice, Carol Roscoe, Brian Lewis, Scott C. Brown, Christian Doyle, Jennifer page, Geoff Gibbs, Ed Gibbs, Don Early, Sean K. Reynolds, Chris Duppenthaler, Julia Vancil, Steve Wolbrecht, Emily Olson, John Frank Rosenblum
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy
Rated: NR
Length: 105 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: Lodge, a gaming geek, takes his playing very seriously, unlike his babyish friends who'd rather be immature. He decides to shake things up by introducing two unconventional people to their group.

The trailer doesn’t do a good job of showing just how awesome Daphne/Joanna is.

Two names, sure, but same person. This movie is about a group of buddies role-playing together. It goes back and forth between their real-life personas and their in-game characters. In the film, Daphne is new to RP, but she takes to it like a duck to water and winds up having more sense than any of the other guys.

In the game, Joanna winds up being pretty bad ass and a lot of fun to watch. Since she’s kind of shrugged off in the beginning as likely not knowing what to do, it makes the stuff she accomplishes seem even better.

29 – Sharknado (2013-)

Viewing Options: Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Anthony C. Ferrante
Writer: Thunder Levin
Actors: Ian Ziering, Tara Reid, John Heard, Cassandra Scerbo, Jason Simmons, Alex Arleo, Neil H. Berkow, Heather Jocelyn Blair, Chuck Hittinger
Genre: Comedy, Horror, Sci-Fi
Rated: TV-14
Length: 86 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: When a freak hurricane swamps Los Angeles, nature's deadliest killer rules sea, land, and air as thousands of sharks terrorize the waterlogged populace.

Don’t laugh.

I know the Sharknado series is absolutely ridiculous. That’s why I enjoy it. It’s like a parody. However, there’s no denying that it is full of some massively bad ass women.

April and Nova are both pretty awesome. Nova started an entire group of women dedicated to killing sharks. April is now a partial cyborg with super strength and other abilities. That makes both of them just as bad ass, or more, than Fin.

28 – Where the Heart Is (2000)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Matt Williams
Writer: Lowell Ganz, Babaloo Mandel, Billie Letts
Actors: Natalie Portman, Ashley Judd, Stockard Channing, Joan Cusack, James Frain, Dylan Bruno, Keith David, Ray Prewitt, Laura House, Karey Green, Richard Andrew Jones, Sally Field, Mackenzie Fitzgerald
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Rated: PG-13
Length: 120 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A pregnant 17-year-old rebuilds her life after being abandoned by her boyfriend at a Wal-Mart in Sequoyah, Oklahoma.

This film starts out with an uneducated, pregnant woman getting abandoned by her boyfriend at a Walmart. From there, we follow Novalee through life.

She doesn’t stay down long. She picks herself up by her bootstraps, all while dealing with a great deal of hell. She deals with a kidnapping, a tornado, her best friend being assaulted… and she comes out the other side happy and healthy with a beautiful daughter. She even gets to confront the man that abandoned her at one point.

She may not be throwing any punches, but she is definitely bad ass.

27 – Miss Congeniality (2000)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Donald Petrie
Writer: Marc Lawrence, Katie Ford, Caryn Lucas
Actors: Sandra Bullock, Michael Caine, Benjamin Bratt, Candice Bergen, William Shatner, Ernie Hudson, John DiResta, Heather Burns, Melissa De Sousa, Steve Monroe, Deirdre Quinn, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Asia De Marcos
Genre: Action, Comedy, Crime
Rated: PG-13
Length: 109 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: An FBI agent must go undercover in the Miss United States beauty pageant to prevent a group from bombing the event.

Gracie Hart is ridiculously bad ass – emphasis on ‘ridiculous.’

This film is, after all, a comedy. And it’s a very slapstick kind of comedy, but Hart kicks some serious ass throughout the film. In fact, when the majority of her department thinks she’s wrong, she pretty much tells them to fuck off and handles it herself.

26 – A Little Princess (1995)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Alfonso Cuaron
Writer: Frances Hodgson Burnett, Richard LaGravenese, Elizabeth Chandler
Actors: Liesel Matthews, Eleanor Bron, Liam Cunningham, Rusty Schwimmer, Arthur Malet, Vanessa Lee Chester, Errol Sitahal, Heather DeLoach, Taylor Fry, Darcie Bradford, Rachael Bella, Alexandra Rea-Baum, Camilla Belle, Lauren Blumenfeld, Kelsey Mulrooney, Kaitlin Cullum, Alison Moir, Time Winters
Genre: Drama, Family, Fantasy
Rated: G
Length: 97 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A young girl is relegated to servitude at a boarding school when her father goes missing and is presumed dead.

This is a misleading movie for a list like this. It follows the life of a well-off girl as she’s orphaned and forced into a slave-like position by the matron of her boarding school.

Why is a character like that considered bad ass?

Even as she was forced to live in the attic with minimal care, she managed to better her life and the life of the other little girl in the same situation. She winds up caring for all the girls in the boarding school through use of her incredibly in depth and imaginative stories. At the end, when she’s framed as a thief, she manages to climb into another building from the roof.

It’s a touching story, but I’ve always seen that little girl as being pretty bad ass. She survives, even flourishes, in a situation that would have ended many of us.

25 – Final Girl (2015)

Viewing Options: Netflix, Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Tyler Shields
Writer: Johnny Silver, Stephen Scarlata, Alejandro Seri, Adam Prince
Actors: Abigail Breslin, Wes Bentley, Logan Huffman, Cameron Bright, Alexander Ludwig, Reece Thompson, Francesca Eastwood, Emma Paetz, Gracyn Shinyei, Desiree Zurowski, Sean Tyson
Genre: Action, Thriller
Rated: R
Length: 90 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A man teaches a young woman how to become a complete weapon. Later she is approached by a group of sadistic teens who kill blonde women for unknown reasons. The hunting season begins.

This entire film is about a girl that’s trained to kill. She’s ‘kidnapped’ by a group of guys looking to hunt and kill her, but they’re surprised when she fights back. It’s very satisfying to watch a victim turn the tables on her attackers and make them regret life.

24 – Warm Bodies (2013)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Jonathan Levine
Writer: Jonathan Levine, Isaac Marion
Actors: Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer, Analeigh Tipton, Rob Corddry, Dave Franco, John Malkovich, Cory Hardrict
Genre: Comedy, Horror, Romance
Rated: PG-13
Length: 98 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: After a highly unusual zombie saves a still-living girl from an attack, the two form a relationship that sets in motion events that might transform the entire lifeless world.

This is a romance, but it takes place during the zombie apocalypse. Ignoring the romantic aspect, Julie pretty much grows up in a world where the majority of the population is trying to eat her brain.

From pretty much the first moment we’re exposed to her, it’s clear that she can handle herself. When she’s taken by a zombie, she even manages to push past her fear to become comfortable with him. Taken by a zombie, I would not be so cool.

23 – The Addams Family (1991)

Viewing Options: Netflix, Amazon, Vudu
Director: Barry Sonnenfeld
Writer: Charles Addams, Caroline Thompson, Larry Wilson
Actors: Anjelica Huston, Raul Julia, Christopher Lloyd, Dan Hedaya, Elizabeth Wilson, Judith Malina, Carel Struycken, Dana Ivey, Christina Ricci, Jimmy Workman, Christopher Hart, John Franklin
Genre: Comedy, Fantasy
Rated: PG-13
Length: 99 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: Con artists plan to fleece an eccentric family using an accomplice who claims to be their long-lost uncle.

The Addams Family is just full of strong, bad ass women. Morticia and Wednesday are the first to come to mind. There’s really nothing not bad ass about either of them.

22 – Panic Room (2002)

Viewing Options: HBO Go, Amazon, iTunes, Vudu
Director: David Fincher
Writer: David Koepp
Actors: Jodie Foster, Kristen Stewart, Forest Whitaker, Dwight Yoakam, Jared Leto, Patrick Bauchau, Ann Magnuson, Ian Buchanan
Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Rated: R
Length: 112 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A divorced woman and her diabetic daughter take refuge in their newly-purchased house's safe room, when three men break-in, searching for a missing fortune.

Meg Altman is your basic everyday mom… but when a group of men invade her home, she steps it up.

Altman takes control of the situation, gets her daughter into a panic room with her, and then has to figure out how to control her daughter’s medical needs while getting help for them both. This includes abandoning the panic room more than once, risking her life against the violent intruders.

21 – Sucker Punch (2011)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Zack Snyder
Writer: Zack Snyder, Steve Shibuya
Actors: Emily Browning, Abbie Cornish, Jena Malone, Vanessa Hudgens, Jamie Chung, Carla Gugino, Oscar Isaac, Jon Hamm, Scott Glenn, Richard Cetrone, Gerard Plunkett, Malcolm Scott
Genre: Action, Fantasy
Rated: PG-13
Length: 110 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A young girl is institutionalized by her abusive stepfather, retreating to an alternative reality as a coping strategy, envisioning a plan to help her escape.

I originally had this film much higher on the list, but after re-watching it, I decided it belonged a little lower. There are some resolutions that negate bits of the bad ass nature of things, especially since a lot of stuff turns out to be the fantasies of a lobotomized girl, but there’s still a lot that applies.

20 – Mr. and Mrs. Smith (2005)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Doug Liman
Writer: Simon Kinberg
Actors: Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Vince Vaughn, Adam Brody, Kerry Washington, Keith David, Chris Weitz, Rachael Huntley, Michelle Monaghan
Genre: Action, Comedy, Crime
Rated: PG-13
Length: 120 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A bored married couple is surprised to learn that they are both assassins hired by competing agencies to kill each other.

This film about two assassins that are married and ignorant of each other is actually a really good place to find a bad ass female character. Both before and after the truth comes out, Mrs. Smith is always shown to be Mr. Smith’s equal in the assassination business. She’s ruthless, smart, and active. When they finally go head-to-head, it winds up being a bit of a draw.

They are shown as equals. If one of them is better in one scene, the other is better in another. It’s really well done.

19 – Knights of Badassdom (2013)

Viewing Options: Netflix, Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Joe Lynch
Writer: Kevin Dreyfuss, Matt Wall
Actors: D.R. Anderson, E. Earl Brown, Kevin Connell, Sean Cook, Peter Dinklage, Khanh Doan, Michael Gladis, Summer Glau, Brett Gipson, Tom Hopper, Ryan Kwanten, Margarita Levieva, Joshua Malina, Brian Posehn, Steve Zahn
Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy
Rated: R
Length: 86 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: Live-action role players conjure up a demon from Hell by mistake and they must deal with the consequences.

Now, Gwen wasn’t the main character of Knights of Badassdom… but that changes nothing. She put the rest of the characters to shame in how epic she was. She was a character that easily stands out in your mind, even in a film as strange as this one.

18 – Scream (1996-2011)

Viewing Options: Vudu, iTunes
Director: Wes Craven
Writer: Kevin Williamson
Actors: Drew Barrymore, Roger Jackson, Neve Campbell, Skeet Ulrich, Lawrence Hecht, Courteney Cox, Rose McGowan, Matthew Lillard, David Arquette, Jamie Kennedy, Live Schreiber
Genre: Horror, Mystery
Rated: R
Length: 111 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A year after the murder of her mother, a teenage girl is terrorized by a new killer, who targets the girl and her friends by using horror films as part of a deadly game.

Sidney Prescott may have started her time in the Scream movies as a victim… but that changed pretty quickly. She learned from her mistakes and, by later movies, she was almost cold blooded in her actions to ensure the bad guy didn’t come back after being killed.

No matter how weak she might have been at the start, there’s no doubting that later Sidney is ready to take on whoever she has to.

17 – Yoga Hosers (2016)

Viewing Options: Netflix, Amazon, iTunes
Director: Kevin Smith
Writer: Kevin Smith
Actors: Lily-Rose Depp, Harley Quinn Smith, Adam Brody, Harley Morenstein, Ashley Greene, Jack Depp, Austin Butler, Tyler Posey, Jennifer Schwalbach Smith, Justin Long, Tony Hale, Natasha Lyonne, Haley Joel Osment, Johnny Depp, Kevin Conroy, Kevin Smith, Stan lee, Jason Mewes
Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Horror
Rated: PG-13
Length: 88 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: Two teenage yoga enthusiasts team up with a legendary man-hunter to battle with an ancient evil presence that is threatening their major party plans.

The two teenage main characters of this film start off pretty normal, but when faced with evil, they step up their game and take it out.

The film is a little ridiculous, but in the best way… and the girl are bad ass in it.

16 – The Craft (1996)

Viewing Options: Netflix, Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Andrew Fleming
Writer: Peter Filardi, Andrew Fleming
Actors: Robin Tunney, Fairuza Balk, Neve Campbell, Rachel True, Skeet Ulrich, Christine Taylor, Breckin Meyer, Nathaniel Marston, Cliff De Young, Assumpta Serna, Helen Shaver, Jeanine Jackson
Genre: Drama, Fantasy, Horror
Rated: R
Length: 101 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A newcomer to a Catholic prep high school falls in with a trio of outcast teenage girls who practice witchcraft and they all soon conjure up various spells and curses against those who even slightly anger them.

Although the girls in this film start out as just kind of weird, the entrance of Sarah turns them all into real witches. Nancy may turn evilly batshit, but Sarah winds up growing into her power and saving the day. When the other girls lose their abilities, she doesn’t. The ending suggests that she’ll remain a strong witch for the rest of her days… only without the crazy that Nancy fell victim to.

15 – How I Live Now (2013)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Hulu, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Kevin Macdonald
Writer: Meg Rosoff, Jeremy Brock, Penelope Skinner, Tony Grisoni, Jack Thorne
Actors: Saoirse Ronan, Tom Holland, George MacKay, Harley Bird, Danny McEvoy, Anna Chancellor, Jonathan Rugman, Corey Johnson, Darren Morfitt
Genre: Drama, Romance, Thriller
Rated: R
Length: 101 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: An American girl, sent to the English countryside to stay with relatives, finds love and purpose while fighting for her survival as war envelops the world around her.

Although I found this movie intensely creepy, the main character, Daisy, proved herself to be really amazing in a horrible situation. She didn’t succeed at absolutely everything, but she managed to reunite the majority of her family during a struggle-filled war. That’s kind of hard to overlook.

14 – Wanted (2008)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Timur Bekmambetov
Writer: Michael Brandt, Derek Haas, Chris Morgan, Mark Millar, J.G. Jones
Actors: James McAvoy, Morgan Freeman, Angelina Jolie, Terence Stamp, Thomas Kretschmann, Common, Kristen Hager, Marc Warren, David O’Hara, Konstantin Khabenskiy, Dato Bakhtadze, Chris Pratt, Lorna Scott, Sophiya Haque
Genre: Action, Crime, Fantasy
Rated: R
Length: 110 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A frustrated office worker learns that he is the son of a professional assassin and that he shares his father's superhuman killing abilities.

A lot of people found this film to be lacking, but I enjoyed it in all its cheesy glory.

Fox was incredibly bad ass in it. Not only was she responsible for initially saving Wesley and training him, but she’s the only one that made the right decision in the end… even though it involved her death.

13 – Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001)

Viewing Options: Netflix, Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise
Writer: Tab Murphy, Kirk Wise, Gary Trousdale, Joss Whedon, Bryce Zabel, Jackie Zabel, David Reynolds, Plato
Actors: Michael J. Fox, Cree Summer, Corey Burton, James Garner, Claudia Christian, John Mahoney, Phil Morris, Leonard Nimoy, Don Novello, Jacqueline Obradors, Florence Stanley, David Ogden Stiers, Natalie Strom, Jim Varney, Jim Cummings, Patrick Pinney, Steven Barr
Genre: Animation, Action, Adventure
Rated: PG
Length: 95 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A young adventurer named Milo Thatch joins an intrepid group of explorers to find the mysterious lost continent of Atlantis.

Princess Kida wound up being the only hope of her land. This is an incredibly often forgotten Disney film and she’s a very underrated princess for the production company. She’s never mentioned, but she was definitely epic.

12 – Divergent (2014)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Neil Burger
Writer: Evan Daugherty, Vanessa Taylor, Vanessa Roth
Actors: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Ashley Judd, Jai Courtney, Ray Stevenson, Zoe Kravitz, Miles Teller, Tony Goldwyn, Ansel Elgort, Maggie Q, Mekhi Phifer, Kate Winslet, Ben Lloyd-Hughes, Christian Madsen, Amy Newbolds, Ben Lamb
Genre: Adventure, Mystery, Sci-Fi
Rated: PG-13
Length: 139 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: In a world divided by factions based on virtues, Tris learns she's Divergent and won't fit in. When she discovers a plot to destroy Divergents, Tris and the mysterious Four must find out what makes Divergents dangerous before it's too late.

Tris is MUCH more epic in the books… in fact the movies are so different than the book that I’m hesitant to call them the same damn story. Still, and begrudgingly, I have to admit she’s pretty bad ass in the films as well.

I still recommend the books over the movies.

11 – You’re Next (2011)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Adam Wingard
Writer: Simon Barrett
Actors: Sharni Vinson, Nicholas Tucci, Wendy Glenn, AJ Bowen, Joe Swanberg, Margaret Laney, Amy Seimetz, Ti West, Rob moran, Barbara Crampton, L.C. Holt, Simon Barrett, Lane Hughes, Larry Fessenden, Kate Lyn Sheil, Calvin Reeder
Genre: Horror, Thriller
Rated: R
Length: 95 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: When the Davison family comes under attack during their wedding anniversary getaway, the gang of mysterious killers soon learns that one of the victims harbors a secret talent for fighting back.

This thriller focuses on a family that’s attacked during a gathering. Erin is an outsider visiting with a date. When she’s confronted with the violence, we learn quickly that she’s more than she seems. She takes them on with survival instincts we couldn’t have expected from anyone at that gathering. It’s a sight to behold.

10 – I Am Number Four (2011)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: D.J. Caruso
Writer: Alfred Gough, Miles Millar, Marti Noxon, Jobie Hughes, James Frey
Actors: Alex Pettyfer, Timothy Olyphant, Teresa Palmer, Dianna Agron, Callan McAuliffe, Kevin Durand, Jake Abel, Jeff Hochendoner, Patrick Sebes, Greg Townley, Reuben Langdon, Emily Wickersham
Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Rated: PG-13
Length: 109 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: Aliens and their Guardians are hiding on Earth from intergalactic bounty hunters. They can only be killed in numerical order, and Number Four is next on the list. This is his story.

I hear this film is also very off from the plot in the books, but I still enjoy it. And, although Number 4/John is the main character, it’s Number 6 that’s a rock star.

Number 6 swoops in when the worst is happening and saves John’s ass. She also fills him in on everything they need to do and helps him figure out his powers better.

And yes, there’s two girls on the poster, but there’s no love triangle. How’s that for a breath of fresh air?

9 – Evil Dead - Remake (2013)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Fede Alvarez
Writer: Fede Alvarez, Rodo Sayagues, Sam Raimi
Actors: Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez, Lou Taylor Pucci, Jessica Lucas, Elizabeth Blackmore, Phoenix Connolly, Jim McLarty, Randal Wilson, Rupert Degas, Bob Dorian, Ellen Sandweiss, Bruce Campbell, Inca
Genre: Fantasy, Horror
Rated: R
Length: 91 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: Five friends head to a remote cabin, where the discovery of a Book of the Dead leads them to unwittingly summon up demons living in the nearby woods.

All the original Evil Dead films are awesomely campy and fun to watch, but the remake took a more serious turn. Not only that, but it replaced our beloved Ash with Mia, a bad ass girl that has to try to survive the evil in the house.

People really need to stop activating the evil inside cabins. Rule of thumb, if it’s written in Latin – don’t read it out-loud.

8 – Hush (2016)

Viewing Options: Netflix
Director: Mike Flanagan
Writer: Mike Flanagan, Kate Siegel
Actors: John Gallagher Jr., Kate Siegel, Michael Trucco, Samantha Sloyan, Emma Graves
Genre: Horror, Thriller
Rated: R
Length: 81 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: A deaf writer who retreated into the woods to live a solitary life must fight for her life in silence when a masked killer appears at her window.

Hush is bad ass in so many different ways. Not only is the main character a female charged with protecting herself against a sociopathic invader, but she’s deaf as well.

Maddie is convinced she’s going to die during the majority of the film, but decides that she’d rather go down fighting than waiting for her fate. By the end, she pulled herself out of danger and made it clear that she was no easy victim.

7 – Frozen (2013)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee
Writer: Jennifer Lee, Hans Christian Andersen, Chris Buck, Shane Morris
Actors: Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Jonathan Groff, Josh Gad, Santino Fontana, Alan Tudyk, Ciaran Hinds, Chris Williams, Stephen J. Anderson, Maia Wilson, Edie McClurg, Livvy Stubenrauch, Eva Bella, Spencer Lacey Ganus
Genre: Animation, Adventure, Comedy
Rated: PG
Length: 102 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: When the newly crowned Queen Elsa accidentally uses her power to turn things into ice to curse her home in infinite winter, her sister, Anna, teams up with a mountain man, his playful reindeer, and a snowman to change the weather condition.

There isn’t a single part of me that understands why this film isn’t on more lists like this one. It’s featured on precious few, as a matter of fact.

Elsa is incredibly bad ass and Anna sets out to get her sister back before she even met Kristoff. It’s clear that she’d have continued on her mission with or without the guy. The film itself isn’t even based on romantic love, it’s based on the true sisterly love between the two women.

6 – Tomorrow, When the War Began (2010)

Viewing Options: Netflix, iTunes
Director: Stuart Beattie
Writer: John Marsden, Stuart Beattie
Actors: Caitlin Stasey, Rachel Hurd-Wood, Lincoln Lewis, Deniz Akdeniz, Phoebe Tonkin, Chris Pang, Ashleigh Cummings, Andrew Ryan
Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama
Rated: R
Length: 103 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: When their country is invaded and their families are taken, eight unlikely high school teenagers band together to fight.

This is basically the Australian version of Red Dawn (1984/2012), only the group is led by a female. It’s actually a great film.

5 – Brave (2012)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman, Steve Purcell
Writer: Brenda Chapman, Mark Andrews, Steve Purcell, Irene Mecchi
Actors: Kelly Macdonald, Billy Connolly, Emma Thompson, Julie Walters, Robbie Coltrane, Kevin McKidd, Craig Ferguson, Peigi Barker, Steven Cree
Genre: Animation, Adventure, Comedy
Rated: PG
Length: 93 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: Determined to make her own path in life, Princess Merida defies a custom that brings chaos to her kingdom. Granted one wish, Merida must rely on her bravery and her archery skills to undo a beastly curse.

This is another Disney film that isn’t mentioned nearly enough on lists like this one. Merida is a bad ass with a bow and arrow, and there’s very little that’s a real match for her.

4 – Bend it Like Beckham (2002)

Viewing Options: HBO Go, Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Gurinder Chadha
Writer: Gurinder Chadha, Guljit Bindra, Paul Mayeda Berges
Actors: Parminder Nagra, Keira Knightley, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Anupam Kher, Archie Panjabi, Shaznay Lewis, Frank Harper, Juliet Stevenson, Shaheen Khan, Ameet Chana, Pooja Shah
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Rated: PG-13
Length: 112 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: The daughter of orthodox Sikh rebels against her parents' traditionalism and joins a football team

For a young girl interested in soccer, this film was filled will bad ass role models. They got dirty, they sacrificed, and they fought against stereotypes in order to play the game they love. A great film with some great women in it.

3 – Ever After: A Cinderella Story (1998)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Andy Tennant
Writer: Susannah Grant, Andy Tennant, Rick Parks, Charles Perrault
Actors: Drew Barrymore, Anjelica Huston, Dougray Scott, Patrick Godfrey, Megan Dodds, Melanie Lynskey, Timothy West, Judy Parfitt, Jeroen Krabbe, Lee Ingleby, Anna Maguire, Richard O’Brien, Elizabeth Earl, Alex Pooley
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Rated: PG-13
Length: 121 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: The "real" story of Cinderella. A refreshing new take on the classic fairy tale.

Yes, a Cinderella story made this list.

Ever After: A Cinderella Story, however, is a little different than what people are mostly used to. Although the prince gets it into his head to save Danielle (Cinderella), he doesn’t get there in time. She saves her damn self.

This film was actually my favorite for a little while when I was younger.

2 – Enough (2002)

Viewing Options: HBO Go, Amazon, Vudu, iTunes
Director: Michael Apted
Writer: Nicholas Kazan
Actors: Jennifer Lopez, Billy Campbell, Tessa Allen, Juliette Lewis, Dan Futterman, Noah Wyle, Fred Ward, Christopher Maher, Janet Carroll, Bill Cobbs, Bruce A. Young
Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Rated: PG-13
Length: 115 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: After running away fails, a terrified woman (Jennifer Lopez) empowers herself in order to battle her abusive husband (Billy Campbell).

This film focuses on a more realistic kind of bad ass woman.

In the beginning of the movie, Slim meets a man and gets married. Somewhere down the road he turns incredibly abusive. The majority of the rest of the film is Slim running or learning how to fight. She’s started to understand that he’d never stop going after her and their daughter if she doesn’t fight back.

The ending is amazing to watch, especially for someone that’s dealt with abuse.

1 – A League of Their Own (1992)

Viewing Options: Amazon, Vudu
Director: Penny Marshall
Writer: Kim Wilson, Kelly Candaele, Lowell Ganz, Babaloo Mandel
Actors: Tom Hanks, Geena Davis, Lori Petty, Madonna, Rosie O’Donnell, Megan Cavanagh, Tracy Reiner, Bitty Schram, Ann Cusack, Anne Ramsay, Freddie Simpson, Renee Coleman, Robin Knight, Patti Pelton, Kelli Simpkins, Neezer Tarleton, Connie Pounds-Taylor, Kathleen Marshall, Sharon Szmidt, Pauline Brailsford, David Strathairn, Garry Marshall, Jon Lovitz, Bill Pullman, Eddie Jones, Justin Scheller, Alan Wilder
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Family
Rated: PG
Length: 128 minutes
More Information Here.

IMDb Blurb: Two sisters join the first female professional baseball league and struggle to help it succeed amidst their own growing rivalry.

I watched this film so much when I was a kid that I destroyed the video tape.

This film was filled to the brim with bad ass women breaking stereotypes and owning the baseball diamond. I still have the soundtrack memorized from beginning to end and it’s almost impossible to choose just one character to admire over the others.

The fact that this wasn’t mentioned on any of the lists I saw, is a crime. 

Friday, August 18, 2017

Reality (2014) - Foreign Film Friday

Number Rolled: 81
Movie Name/Year: Reality (2014)
Tagline: None
Genre: Comedy
Length: 87 minutes
Rating: NR
Production Companies: Realitism Films, Centre National de la Cinématographie (CNC), Sofica Manon 2, Sofica Manon 3, La Banque Postale Images 5, La Banque Postale Image 6, Versus Production, Canal+, Rubber Films, Le Tax Shelter du Gouvernement Fédéral de Belgique, Inver Invest, Noodles
Producer: Gregory Bernard, Diane Jassem, Josef Lieck, Kevin Van Der Meiren
Director: Quentin Dupieux
Writer: Quentin Dupieux
Actors: Alain Chabat, Jonathan Lambert, Elodie Bouchez, Kyla Kenedy, Jon Heder, Eric Wareheim, John Glover, Lola Delon, Matt Battaglia, Susan Diol, Erik Passoja, Jonathan Spencer, Bambadjan Bamba
Stunts: Caleb Adams, Jeffrey G. Barnett, Pete Dicecco, Josh Hoyer, Chris McLaughlin, Anthony Petruso, Jordan Raoufpur, Spencer Regan, Adam Skinner, Tristan Walczak

Blurb from Netflix: Aspiring filmmaker Jason finally finds a financier for his horror movie -- with one catch: He must find the best groan of pain ever recorded.

Selina’s Point of View:
I am left with a feeling of confusion so deep that I’m uncertain as to whether or not I fell asleep during this film and dreamt it up as a nightmare.

You know that level of confusion that turns into a migraine that feels like a constant pressure in your temples? That’s where I’m at right now.

I enjoy movies that make you think. However, I like some kind of resolution – even if it’s a resolution that can be debatable. Even Inception (2010) gave enough of a hint at the end to spark debate. What I got from this film was complete and utter chaos with no actual indication of what really happened. The ending didn’t explain anything and the feeling I’m left with is not pleasant.

Now, you can be left with an unpleasant feeling from a tearjerker film or a horror, and it would be fine. The negative emotions I’m left with right now are not along those lines. In fact, they border more on regret. I regret watching this movie.

The confusion is the worst part, but not the only bad one.

There’s a scene near the beginning of the film, where a producer tells a director to stop wasting film. He berates the guy for sticking to a bad shot for too long. Meanwhile, Reality is FILLED with shots like that. Long scenes focused on a single unnecessary action with repetitive and unpleasantly hypnotic music playing over it.

You’d think if the writer/director was going to have a back and forth about it in his film – then he would know not to make that mistake.

I hated Reality. If possible, I hated the soundtrack more than the actual film. I don’t know why it’s labeled a comedy, either.

I’m just glad this wasn’t a longer movie.

Cat’s Point of View:
This movie was just bizarre. I am not entirely sure what I just watched and I’m questioning EVERYTHING.

If that’s what they were shooting for with it, they were successful. If it was supposed to make sense on some level, then to say it failed to do so would be an epic understatement.

For a little bit, I was worried that this film was classified incorrectly as a foreign film. It starts in very clear English and continues as such for a good 15 minutes or more before the first word of French is spoken. It’s a grab bag switching between from there on through to the end.

To further confuse things, I recognized 3 American actors fairly quickly: John Glover (Smallville, The Good Wife, We Go On), Eric Wareheim (Wrong Cops, Tim and Eric Awesome Show Great Job, Master of None), and Jon Heder (Walt Before Mickey, Christmas Eve, Ghost Team).

The latter two are well known for indie comedy work so it’s not entirely a surprise, but it threw me off in that initial span where I wondered if I was watching the right movie or not.

There were some amusing moments scattered here and there, but largely I remained in a perpetual state of ‘what the hell am I watching?’ As I mentioned before, I am entirely unsure as to the answer of that question. I’m honestly not sure that I want to know the answers; because understanding this film seems to be one foot in the door of a padded room where I’d have to wear an ‘I love me’-jacket.

You know, the kind with straps and buckles that encourages you to hug yourself.

All told, I didn’t hate the movie; but I have no interest in watching it ever again. I invite anyone who likes being confused and enjoyed debating the nuances of Inception (2010) to give it a whirl.

Speech Available: French
Subtitles Available: English

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 64%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 65%
Metascore - 55/100
Metacritic User Score – 7.3/10
IMDB Score – 6.9/10

Trust the Dice: Selina’s Rating1/5
Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating2/5

Trust-the-Dice’s Parental Advisory Rating: PG-13

Movie Trailer: