A Quest of One’s Own

I love me some classic fantasy narratives, especially that old standby, the quest story. I love doomed journeys and mistaken identities and coming-of-age moments, and questing tales are stuffed with them.

When I saw the previews for Stardust, I almost drooled. And the movie itself, a quest story if ever there was one, didn’t disappoint – until later, when I was enthusiastically comparing it to another favorite film of mine, The Princess Bride.

“It’s got the same kind of over-the-top-yet-awesome action!” I said, happily. And then, less happily, “and, actually, now that I think of it… The same kind of agency-less women.”

Don’t get me wrong. I love Buttercup. But she doesn’t do much, you know?

And it seems like, even in fantasy films where the female characters get to fight, or have magic powers, they still don’t actually get to be heroes the way male characters in the same films do.

I tend to think that things are getting better for women in fantasy movies, generally. The recent film versions of the Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia featured expanded and less-sexist roles for some female characters, which is a positive step. And there are movies with young women in the central hero role of the classic fantasy quest story, like the title character of Ella Enchanted. Though, of course, Prince Char has a lot more going for him in terms of capability and personal power than the female romantic interests in more typical questing stories ever do.

So, yes, there are lots of great female characters in fantasy movies, and even some really wonderful heroines. But I can’t think of any that quite rival the classic male heroes of the genre. Which is weird. Is there really anything about a quest story, or any other classic fantasy narrative, that makes it unsuitable for a female lead? Of course not.

So where are the strong heroines of fantasy films?

Comments

  1. says

    See, I had a theory about this a while back, but I never really fleshed it out. I don’t think it’s just sexism, or rather, I think it’s more complicated than just “heroines won’t sell!”

    It think also has to do with the fact that so many quest stories fit into Joseph Campbell/Oedipus Rex model for quests – often deliberately. But that’s very much a male/patriarchy centered model for quest stories. It’s very symbolic of coming of age – as a boy – in a patriarchy.

    There isn’t some special gene that makes coming of age as a girl different, but there is something very different about coming of age as a girl vs. as a boy in a patriarchy. And I don’t just mean in terms of conforming.

    Carol Gilligan (yes, I quote her far too much) talks about how women and men (tend to) reach the same morality from different sides because of how we are socialized as children. Boys start from a rights and rules based perspective and move to a less disconnected view of the world. Girls (tend to) start from an almost selfless view of interconnectedness and must find a way to carve out space for self.

    In her book The Birth of Pleasure Gilligan talks a lot about the myth of Cupid and Psyche and how it’s a myth about a young woman confronting the patriarchy and demanding a place for herself and how the ending of the myth suggests that Psyche’s actions are meant to be seen as leading the way out of the destructive oedipedal patriarchal cycle.

    This is why I am so incredibly fascinated by actual old wives tales – like the version of Little Red Riding Hood where she escapes on her own, because they don’t just feature heroines, they also remind me a lot of what Gilligan sees in the story of Psyche. They don’t just try to say “well, girls can do what boys can do!” They also speak to our experiences as girls and women and celebrate oft disparaged feminine qualities – all while not letting their heroines be boxed in by gender.

    Apologies if this doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, I’ve been trying to work it all out for a while now, and I’m closer, but still not there yet. Plus, I need to get to work. :)

  2. says

    Oh, thank you for saying that.

    I was mildly enjoying the movie, I liked that Yvane was a smart mouth and all, and then they got to the pirate ship and Tristram started learning to fence and I was taking it for granted (heaven knows why) that she would too, and then she didn’t and I was sitting there with my mouth literally hanging open. My friend who saw it with me did not see what was so odd about it, but it bothered me so much I posted a rant on my LJ (link above).

    Now most movies would probably give the excuse that she’s a woman and didn’t even slightly know how to fence before, but that’s not gonna fly here. I mean, come on, this pirate captain is so talented he can make Tristram’s hair grow, but he still can’t teach a woman to fence? We’re supposed to just buy that?

  3. says

    Mickle, I definitely think you’re on to something there. Also, I think your brain is totally awesome.

    Thal, I left a comment on your entry, but I’ll say the gist of it here, too – Yes.

  4. says

    Mickle, interesting you bring up Joseph Campbell. I wrote a series on why he said women can’t have quest stories. I can’t sum up his ideas without vomiting, so I’m afraid I just have to dump the link and run.

    George Lucas drafted a version of SW in which Luke was a girl (or so he says – he’s completely untruthworthy, but this one seems to be confirmed by people who are not), but he ducked out of the idea for fear he couldn’t write a woman properly and Teh Feminiztz would come after him with pitchforks. (“Funny thing about that, George,” said the feminist with her pitchfork engraved ‘Thanks for not even trying’…)

    Xena is the closest thing I can think of to a woman on a quest, and the character who comes closer to questing in that is Gabrielle, who comes of age, who grows and changes and becomes an entirely new person. So if you could count becoming an adult and a warrior in the truest sense as her “quest”, then it almost works.

    But that’s being too generous. I can’t think of one damn movie where a woman has a quest. Sydney on Alias had occasional quests, which should at least help prove it’s a watchable storyline for a woman.

  5. says

    Beta, I’d describe Gabrielle’s character arc as an apprenticeship story, which is another classic fantasy narrative, so I’d probably count that one. And Ella Enchanted is a pretty straightforward quest story with a girl lead. But, yeah, I can’t think of any others.

  6. says

    revena – right back atcha :)

    betacandy – I am so reading that this weekend.

    Back to the question at hand, if I may ramble on some more….I think that there are a lot more consequences from men being in charge of the movie studios and male being the default than just men getting the quests. I think that there are certain kinds of experiences that are favored and that experiences that don’t fit the male default are read as unrealistic and not true – even when they are.

    As an example, I recently rewatched All I Wanna Do. Which, as a feminist and women’s college alum, I am obligated to love.

    (stop reading if you don’t want spoilers!)

    Near the end, there’s a scene where the girls, while engaging in a sit in at their dorm, greet the elderly campus security with clacking lacrosse sticks. I’ve no doubt that a great many people who have seen that scene thought that it was incredibly ridiculous – from the very idea of the sit in to the image of teen girls greeting authority with violence. I, however, was laughing hysterically from pure joy. It’s incredibly rare to see myself portrayed realistically in films, and – despite being exaggerated for comedic effect (I’m curious to know if the safety officers were elderly in first draft of the script) – that has to be one of the most realistic portrayals* of me in film ever.

    And again, it fits very much into the fact that coming of age (here, now, in this culture) means something different for women than for men. Unlike Luke and other Joseph Campbell heroes, heroines do not refuse the call to sacrifice, they refuse the call to be important as an individual. (? -that part of the theory maybe needs a little work). So the climactic moment in All I Wanna Do isn’t rescuing the maiden and the rest of the world (the individual becoming part of the group by helping others), it’s speaking truth to power for personal gain (banding together to elevate individuals).

    Now, I don’t think that every heroine’s quest needs to follow this pattern. I don’t want every heroine’s quest to follow this pattern. But I think that it needs to be an option. And I think that having it as an option will result in heroine’s quests that will speak to women more than Star Wars does, and make it possible to have scifi/fantasy movies that don’t need a huge male audience to make money.

    Although, for that last bit to work we also need to get rid of the asshats that seem to think that women’s money isn’t good enough…….

    *I didn’t participate in the takeover, just the rally that marched through and sat in the halls prior to the takeover. The takeover was awesome, imo – I’m just trying to not take credit for something I didn’t do. :)

  7. Thal says

    Ooh! I just remembered!

    http://imdb.com/title/tt0089385/

    It’s even called The Journey of Natty Gann! The heroine is clever, scrappy and has a soft spot for puppies. When her father gets a job across the country (this is during the Depression) she runs away and follows him any way she can. I haven’t seen this movie for a few years now, but as I recall, it was downright realistic for a Disney movie about a twelve year old hitch hiker. And no feminine wiles to be seen!

  8. says

    “The Journey of Natty Gann” was awesome. Not the least of which is because the love interest is a) played by John Cusack and b) Cusack’s role doesn’t overshadow Meredith Salenger’s (who, hey! was a guest star on one of the best Buffy episodes ever) and so his role managed to not be another example of the Evita Effect.

  9. Thal says

    I know! I really liked how she was the star, even after a guy showed up. They really seemed to be working together, not just one bossing the other around.

    I should probably watch it again, just to make sure. Oh, sigh…

  10. says

    I should probably re-watch it too, but I think we are at least mostly right.

    I very much remember her reuniting with her father without Henry by her side. He was nearby, had helped her get there, and came along soon after, but it was very much a moment between Natty and her father. It wasn’t a scene where Henry brought her to her father, it was meant to be the moment where Natty finished her journey. Natty was still the emotional center of the story, and it was still Natty’s quest to fulfill.

  11. Thal says

    A Disney movie where there’s no embarrassing speech by the heroine about the lesson she’s learned, no slow dance, and the guy is maybe not her One True Love!

    I would love to see something like that more often.

  12. says

    Neverwhere is a little complicated, because the Quest is Door’s but we see it through Richard’s mundane eyes. But Door is the one who Saves The Day through her cleverness and courage in the end: Richard is for all his valour just her Loyal Sidekick.

    There was talk of remaking the miniseries into a big-screen film, but I don’t know if that’s going anywhere or not.

    There are a bunch of other Quest narratives with Leading Ladies either as the main charas or as part of a Buddy setup (or a little of both), but they’re all in books: the Abhorsen trilogy, McKillip’s The Changeling Sea, most of Barbara Hambly’s fantasy/Alt Hist stories, Diane Duane’s Wizards stories, Tanith Lee’s Unicorn trilogy, Elizabeth Kerner’s Dragon trilogy, plus Mercedes Lackey’s stories and of course the Alanna books and many more by Tamora Pierce.

    However, when a book about a heroic girl gets converted to the big screen, as with the upcoming version of the story about the baby Loch Ness monster by the guy who wrote babe, it gets changed so that her sidekick brother is now the star and she’s the comic relief. Because of course a girl wouldn’t want nor be able to raise a baby sea monster and ride it through the waves!

  13. says

    Ok, I definitely need to see this Natty Gann movie!

    bellatrys said:

    There are a bunch of other Quest narratives with Leading Ladies either as the main charas or as part of a Buddy setup (or a little of both), but they’re all in books: the Abhorsen trilogy, McKillip’s The Changeling Sea, most of Barbara Hambly’s fantasy/Alt Hist stories, Diane Duane’s Wizards stories, Tanith Lee’s Unicorn trilogy, Elizabeth Kerner’s Dragon trilogy, plus Mercedes Lackey’s stories and of course the Alanna books and many more by Tamora Pierce.

    However, when a book about a heroic girl gets converted to the big screen, as with the upcoming version of the story about the baby Loch Ness monster by the guy who wrote babe, it gets changed so that her sidekick brother is now the star and she’s the comic relief. Because of course a girl wouldn’t want nor be able to raise a baby sea monster and ride it through the waves!

    Yeah, that’s something I’ve kinda been picking up on, too. :-(

  14. Melpomene says

    hmm. at first i was gonna say *the princess diaries* are a great quest story, but in retrospect, they’re totally an apprenticeship story. and they’re not fantasy. but instead, i’ll put down a quote from the sequel, because i think it rocks that the princess does not get married at the end. :D

    Mia Thermopolis: Welcome. A few moments ago, I realized the only reason I was getting married was because of a law, and that didn’t seem like a good enough reason. So, I won’t be getting married today. My grandmother has ruled without a man at her side for quite some time, and… I think she rocks at it. So, as the granddaughter of Queen Clarisse and King Rupert…
    Congregation: [interrupting] King Rupert, may he rest in peace!
    Mia Thermopolis: I ask the members of Parliament to think about your daughters, your nieces, and sisters, and granddaughters, and ask yourselves: would you force them to do what you’re trying to make me do? I believe I will be a great queen. I understand Genovia to be a land that combines the beauty of the past with all the best hope of the future. I feel in my heart and soul that I can rule Genovia. I… I love Genovia. Do you think that I would be up here in a wedding dress if I didn’t? I stand here ready to take my place as your queen. Without a husband.

  15. says

    Is there a good Joan of Arc story? I always avoid JoA movies because I was always taught in school “yeah she was really young and must’ve been a military genius BUT CLEARLY SHE WAS MENTALLY ILL BECAUSE SHE THOUGHT GOD TALKED TO HER (AND WORE MEN’S CLOTHING AND DID MAN STUFF, WHICH IS JUST KERRR-AZY!)”, and therefore I had little hope for the movies.

    Her story could qualify as a quest, however. She felt called to recover France from English domination; she acquired the skills; from all accounts she had this incredible self-possession necessary for great leaders; she had a faith that made her resilient and brave; and given how far she progressed on her quest in the short time she had, you can’t really even label it a failed quest.

  16. says

    Maggie, that version of Snow White is fascinating. The controversy becomes generational rather than gender based – the younger generation behaving less selfishly than the older one (with the wife offering to leave her husband to Gold Tree) and therefore triumphing.

  17. MaggieCat says

    Does The Last Unicorn count? I know she’s only human for part of the story, but she’s always female. And there are the bonus fabulous characters of Molly Grue and even Momma Fortuna as a good antagonist.

    My second thought was Tanaquil, my favorite book heroine since about age 11, from Tanith Lee’s unicorn series which bellatrys mentioned. Part of me would love to see that made into a movie just because there’s almost no way they can warp the first book into centering around male characters without making one up from whole cloth and shredding the story to bits. Because there aren’t that many, and most of them are as incidental as female characters are in a lot of other fantasy books. Not that they aren’t good characters, they’re just not the point of the story. :-)

    This is why I am so incredibly fascinated by actual old wives tales – like the version of Little Red Riding Hood where she escapes on her own, because they don’t just feature heroines, they also remind me a lot of what Gilligan sees in the story of Psyche. They don’t just try to say “well, girls can do what boys can do!” They also speak to our experiences as girls and women and celebrate oft disparaged feminine qualities – all while not letting their heroines be boxed in by gender.

    I started to respond to something similar after this was touched on in the comments for one of the Dolores Claiborne posts, but got distracted, but it’s more relevant here anyway.

    Most of my antique fairy tale knowledge is based on variations of the Snow White story (my original comment was based on the forward to White As Snow, Tanith Lee’s retelling), and the amount of revision that’s gone through over the centuries is startling- it was originally the girl’s biological mother who arranged for her death (the same idea of the younger generation overtaking the elder as in the original LRRH) the manners of death, and originally no dwarfs. Sometimes robbers or pirates, but frequently no one, leaving her on her own.

    One of the more interesting versions is a Celtic version called ‘Gold-Tree and Silver-Tree’ which actually has Gold-Tree being married off to prevent her mother killing her, and her husband being the one who preserves her. Eventually he remarries, and his new wife finds Gold-Tree, revives her, and then offers to go away since he loved Gold-Tree so much, but the king and Gold-Tree won’t hear of it. Silver-Tree eventually hears about her daughter’s recovery and comes back to try again, but the second wife is the one who outsmarts and kills her with her own poison, and the three of them live happily ever after.

    Very little of that, however, fits with the story that’s been peddled lately. Gold-Tree is well aware of the danger she’s in. She is not rescued by the prince (who in fact fails to protect her, and doesn’t really do anything of note) but by another woman who should by all rights be happy she’s gone, if we’re following the ‘women fight over men’ trope that the patriarchy loves to present.

    Instead the two younger women immediately become friends, and it is the second wife who is proactive, and kills the queen to protect her friend and a woman her (their?) husband loves. It’s a fascinating contrast to the competitive, adversarial relationship that Silver-Tree instigates with her daughter.

  18. says

    Melpomene, I love those movies. I have a bit of a crush on Anne Hathaway, which certainly helps, but I think they’ve got some great apprenticeship themes in them, as you mention.

    MaggieCat, actually, I think The Last Unicorn would be a really excellent example of a classic fantasy narrative with a female lead. Good catch. Also, a fantastic story both as a film and as a book…

  19. says

    Ahem, since someone mentioned The Princess Diaries and we’ve moved from just movies to including books as well, I should mention Avalon High – also by Meg Cabot. I didn’t like it as much as the I liked The Princess Diaries and it’s a King Arthur story, so the argument can be made that it’s not really the protagonist’s quest – much like Neverwhere. However, Meg Cabot ends the first book in way that reminds me of Muriel Rukeyser’s poem Myth.

    Both the Myth and Avalon High suggest that the King Arthur and the Oedipus stories ended in tragedy not because of the usual suspects (often faithless and jealous women), but because the men were unable to see women as people. So while I’m not sure I’d call Avalon High a quest story, despite being very much a fantasy, the entire plot is an argument for quest stories with heroines, and it sets up the rest of the series to be a quest story with male and female protagonists.

    Another book that makes the same argument, but in a very different way, is Into the Wild by Sara Beth Durst. My absolute favorite book at the moment. Which, I’m sure will change in another six months, but for now, my absolute favorite. And, unlike Avalon High, it is is unarguably a quest story centered around several female characters.

  20. MaggieCat says

    and given how far she progressed on her quest in the short time she had, you can’t really even label it a failed quest.

    There’s a great play about Joan of Arc called The Lark (translated from the original French play L’Alouette) that has Joan re-living the events of her life while being questioned that actually presents the story in such a way that at the end, they realize that in their hurry to execute her they haven’t allowed her to remember the coronation of Charles VII. The fire is extinguished, and she is given a reprieve to do so, which actually structures it in such a way that her victories uniting France under a legitimate leader is the finale, not her persecution and death.

  21. says

    Oh, hey, slapping myself because we were just talking about this on my blog – Labyrinth, where (imo) Sarah is both the Princess to be rescued and the Knight Who Rescues, she rescues herself from (again imo) the myth of Prince Charming, and the comforting illusions of traditional romance, without, and this is key, giving up her rich fantasy life or love of the heroic: she chooses to walk as a hero in the waking world, which is why it’s become an almost unsung cult classic among a whole generation of younger women, unsuspected to me until I ran across it by overhearing some much younger co-workers trying to explain what it was about it that went beyond “Mm, David Bowie!” (having had to explain to older coworkers how the heck they even knew who David Bowie was much less collected his music. There is a lot of exploration of all the different things Labyrinth means/says on YouTube, courtesy of various vidders, mostly if not all younger femfans, but my favorite was the one that introduced me to a group, too, Vienna Teng (and helped me formulate some of the Tam Lin theory, too.)

    Betacandy, yes to the Campbell Smackdown (I actually slammed the book against the carrel wall in the college library when I read about how we were Precious Objects and no more) and yes to the Last Unicorn, too – but isn’t it sad that we have to reach back to the ’80s for rockin’ heroines on film? Although I did like the consciously-subversive version of Ever After, which was what, only ten years ago now?

  22. says

    Ah, yes, Ever After was quite fun. Can’t believe I haven’t gotten around to Netflixing that and reviewing it.

    It is disturbing we’re reaching back to the 80’s. I’ve been noticing this pattern ever since I reviewed Cagney and Lacey, but jeez. We have really lost ground in the past 20 years.

  23. says

    Oh, Labyrinth! Of course! I totally dig what you’re saying, bellatrys, about Sarah “walk[ing] as a hero in the waking world” – I hadn’t thought of it that way, but you’re absolutely right.

    And Ever After is another good one, for sure. I quite like that movie.

    Thinking about the 80’s connection, I suppose the She-Ra movie and subsequent TV show could go on this list. It’s got debatable artistic merit, but definitely focuses on a female lead doing some, y’know, leading.

  24. MaggieCat says

    Damn, how did I forget She-Ra!?! That starts as the most traditional, time-honoured type of quest (discovering that you aren’t like the others, learning how to use these new abilities, finding the wise vaguely omniscient mentor figure) and then morphs into general hero-dom while fighting the entrenched corrupt system and liberating the oppressed.

    Seriously, I could not love her more if I tried. And it you add She-Ra to The Last Unicorn and Tanith Lee’s books, you’ve pretty much covered 98% of my fictional childhood role models.

  25. says

    *sigh*

    Female protagonist. Quest. OZ.

    There’s a reason that’s still my favorite fantasy book. :)

    Neil Gaiman does have a tendency toward male protagonists, but he’s done better female secondary characters in most of his work (particularly his comics work) than in Stardust. And he’s a lifetime member of Friends of Lulu; having spoken with him at length about this during my time with FoL I know he’s solidly in our court here.

  26. says

    Do you think The Wizard of Oz film is as powerful as the books though, Elayne? It definitely fits in with the list of fantasy films featuring a female lead that we’re sort’ve compiling here (woo, alliteration!), at any rate.

    I actually much preferred the female secondary characters in the book version of Stardust – a lot of them were way more active and dynamic than their filmic counterparts. I’m not sure why the translation to the screen sapped them of so much vitality.

  27. says

    I’m not sure why the translation to the screen sapped them of so much vitality.

    I can just hear people I worked with in film answering this one: “Because the audience doesn’t want to see strong women!” Which they maintain no matter what people actually go to watch – always having an excuse at the ready.

  28. SunlessNick says

    Neil Gaiman does have a tendency toward male protagonists, but he’s done better female secondary characters in most of his work (particularly his comics work) than in Stardust.

    Death: Time of Your Life is a quest story. A woman (Fox) journeys into Death’s realm in order to save her girlfriend (Hazel); at the same time, the Hazel is undergoing a psychological journey of her own, guided by Death (same Death from Sandman). There’s a male character who ends up doing, on one level, some day-saving at the end – though on another level, he represents the sacrifice needed in any good quest (since he was a friend of the leads) – and on a third level, since he tries to stop Fox going on her quest, he represents the guardian at the gate who must be defeated for the quest to succeed. Either way, the story remains firmly about Fox and Hazel.

  29. says

    I’d like to see that one in movie form, SunlessNick.

    Another movie to add to the list that I was reminded of while re-watching it yesterday is the newest Peter Pan, where Wendy is very much a main character, and undergoing a classic fantasy coming-of-age story.

  30. Delaney says

    I’m new to this forum, having followed a Fark link to it, and I’m guessing you get more trolling and destructive crit than you can stomach. The topic of this thread brings to mind the advances of feminism in other realms, beyond movies and books. I wanted to get some poster’s opins on how the female role is being redefined in the gaming world. I don’t want to be a thread-hyjacker, but reading the word “Quest” lends itself to the many online games such as world of warcraft. I play many hours a week, and I find that many men who play the game are now creating female characters to represent themselves. Is this because the computer world is occupied by “nerd” types who wish to create the onscreen embodiment of their perfect girlfriend? Are they trying to use the “sexuality” of their characters to get an advantage over male characters? Is it some right of ownership, such as the way we are taught to refer to ships and cars as “she” and “her”? I personally know 4 men who regularly become female in-game, though they have no problem letting us know they are male using voice chat while also in-game.
    Again, I’m not trolling, just looking for some honest discussion on the topic, as I can’t get a clear answer from said men with whom I “game”.

  31. says

    Delaney, your comment is neither trolling nor wildly off-topic (we’re pretty flexible about topic wandering).

    I have no insight into your question, unfortunately, but there are gamers around here who will probably respond sooner or later. I just wanted to let you know that your comment was acceptable. (And it’s not so much that we can’t “stomach” the trolling and destructive criticism – many of us choose to frequent forums where it’s the norm and we have no say over it. But since there are so many sites where trolls can spout their crap, we choose to run this site differently so that comments like yours don’t have 30 “shut up, c—” comments on either side of them and therefore get lost in the discussion. :) )

  32. says

    Well, Delaney, all I can say is that when I ask my brother why he chooses female characters, he says it’s because they’re easier on the eyes. (Which is true. The men in the games he plays are hideous.) So for him it’s simply being practical–he wants to be able to look at himself straight on without wincing. Which I guess opens up the question of why men are free to be hideous but women are not…?

  33. says

    Delaney, I suspect that there are some individual men who use female avatars for each of the reasons you suggest, as well as those who do it for the reason offered up by Thal’s brother, and those who do it out of a desire to explore their own gender identities or simple curiosity.

    And Thal, good point. I seem to remember that one of the authors here wrote a post about how ugly most male game avatars are… *searches* Ah, yes, here it is: http://thehathorlegacy.com/azeroth-males-still-arent-pretty/

    I think tekanji might touch on some of these things a bit in her paper, “Idealizing Fantasy Bodies,” hosted at Iris, too.

  34. alicetheowl says

    Does The Last Unicorn count? I know she’s only human for part of the story, but she’s always female. And there are the bonus fabulous characters of Molly Grue and even Momma Fortuna as a good antagonist.

    I certainly hope so, because I love Peter S. Beagle. I’ve gotten the impression that he takes it for granted that strong female protagonists belong in his stories, and that he doesn’t really think about it.

    (I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and speaking with him at several successive Dragon*Cons, and he’s a delight to talk to.)

    The follow-up story, “Two Hearts,” has a great female protagonist, named Sooz, who sets out on her own to deal with a local beast problem.

  35. Patrick says

    This makes me think of a screenwriting book I read (and did actually throw against the wall) in which the (female) author took it as granted that the protagonist of any movie was male, and broke down the events accordingly… which led to some incredibly bizarre plot analysis of Titanic, because she was convinced the film was about Jack, and Rose was just the love interest. Seriously.

    And yes, the book’s list of film genres did include “female-driven picture.” As a genre.

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