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110 minutes | Jul 8, 2021
71 - Top Ten Films about Humanity
We invite back the delightful and witty Courtney Hodgkiss (https://twitter.com/courtneyishere) to talk movies that are so awe-inspiring, breathtaking, maddening and emotional that you can't stop yourself shouting about them to anyone who'll listen. We came up with ten, count em, TEN movies that fit the bill - using various weird sub-categories and went to town talking about the joy and pain of the stories these movies tell. Let us know what we missed. Because visual-storytelling is what makes us human.
112 minutes | Jun 20, 2021
70 - Thank Heaven For Little Girls (but Don't Thank These Movies)
You're minding your own business, watching classic movies, movies that won Best Picture at the Oscars, and then you stop and think...does this film glamourise child prostitution?! Nick and Contrarah take a look at three classic films from yesteryear examining them through a 2021 lens. They are well-made and were financially and critically successful, but the plots and focus on social convention displayed are wild. Get to know Gigi, Fanny, Iris and Betsy with us. Have thoughts? Email us @ firstname.lastname@example.org Tweet us @Beyond_Bechdel and we're now on Instagram so follow and comment on @beyond_bechdel_
35 minutes | Jun 2, 2021
69 - A Quiet Place 2 Explained
We are back in the cinema with a big, bold action movie that celebrates sound and champions hearing loss - A Quiet Place: Part 2. Join Contrarah for an episode about what the film represents, if it's any good and how Millicent Simmonds is its runaway star. This episode contains SPOILERS in certain places, so please consult the running order below if you don't want to be spoiled. 00:00 - 01:25. Intro 01:25 - 11.46. Spoiler free recap and review 11:47 - 25:25. Full plot summary BURSTING WITH SPOILERS - listen at your peril! 25:25 - 34.36. Millicent Simmonds discussion, celebrating hearing-impaired actresses. Impaired NEVER means lesser!
80 minutes | May 14, 2021
68 - Lillian & Julia Vs Mary & Muriel
This episode delves into Hollywood history and the fascinating back story surrounding the 1977 Oscar-winning movie 'Julia'. Based on the memoirs of playwright Lillian Hellman and starring Jane Fonda and Vanessa Redgrave, Julia is a strange and thrilling story about Hellman's real life brush with espionage and German fascism...or is it? After the film was released and won 3 Oscars (including for Adapted Screenplay) it was suggested by Hellman's rival Mary McCarthy that Hellman may have inserted herself into the narrative, and the 'facts' may actually be a fiction, or worse, taken from someone's else life story. Contrarah and Nick look at the moral implications of fabricating film plots, the role of male screenwriters in writing believable female friendships and the 'she said, she said' nature of professional female rivalry. Truth is stranger than fiction, but what exactly is the truth?!
43 minutes | Apr 26, 2021
67 - How Ella Greenwood Became an Award-winning Filmmaker by Shining a Light on Teen Mental Health.
Filmmaker Ella Greenwood packed in a lot in the last couple of years. She made an award-winning short film about her struggles with teenage mental health issues (Faulty Roots), she made an animated film to bring those discussion topics to a younger audience (Dreary Days), she started working on her next film Self Charm with the award-winning Bukky Bakray and she was announced as one of the Forbes' 30 under 30 (at age 19). Ella takes Contrarah through this story, her work with Broken Flames - her company helping to shine a light on teen mental health issues and all the people that helped Ella bring her stories to life. A comedy and horror lover, Ella also waxes lyrical on her love of TV and how female filmmakers are always so much more qualified than they think they are. Click the links for more: Faulty Roots - https://www.imdb.com/title/tt10551374/ Dreary Days - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FwIObd0vHrg Special thanks to Latoya - https://www.franglais27tales.com/
92 minutes | Apr 9, 2021
66 - Were the most popular movies of 2020 actually bad?
Ah 2020, a great year for health, positivity, movies.... in the immortal words of Thor, is it, though? Contrarah researched what movies we went to see at the cinema and on streaming services, and some interesting trends emerged. Did we choose movies to watch because they were the best? Or because they were the best available? Or because they were simply, available? Let us know what films you most loved from last year by mailing us at email@example.com, tweeting @Beyond_Bechdel or on beyondbechdel.com.
58 minutes | Mar 26, 2021
65 - Paris, Open City (for Filmmakers and Content Creators)
This is a real treat of an episode for anyone wanting tips on how to find work in cinema, and for anyone who loves Paris (that's everyone, surely?) Contrarah is joined by director, actress, writer and film festival producer Jenna Suru to talk about the Paris International Film Festival and her film career, including her feature L'Age D'or (The Golden Age), and film reviewer, content creator and PR guru Latoya Austin AKA Franglais27 about her fantastic career and how these two women came to know one another. The episode is divided into parts on the film festival, film journalism, directing a feature, career advice and of course, Bechdel passing and failing movies! Find out more about our guests here: Jenna Suru on Facebook, @jennasuru on Twitter @belleepoquefilms on Instagram and Facebook & Twitter, @lagedorfilm (The Golden Age) on Instagram, Twitter , Facebook and the Youtube Channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCk_PVbgTUIrklZaT1DnC9wQ More on The Paris International Film Festival can be found at: https://www.parisintlfest.com/ Find Latoya at: @franglais27 on Twitter and Instagram and at the website www.Franglais27tales.com and find out more about the Birds Eye View agency's Reclaim the Frame campaign or search using #ReclaimtheFrame Hope to see you all in St Tropez real soon!
81 minutes | Mar 12, 2021
64 - Jen loves Producers, Becky loves Authors, I Love Dick
Now that we have your attention... In honour of (and a little bit in spite of) IWD we made an episode about the women who inspire us - every day - across the arts. Contrarah asked filmmakers Becky Lima-Matthews (Becky-matthews.com) and Jen Francis (Sassy Jam Productions) to come talk, champion and celebrate women in multiple fields and they delivered! Our choices cover producing, writing, gaming, acting, directing and philanthropy (in no particular order) are: Becky: Deborah Levy, Samantha Irby, Candice Carty-Williams Jen: Mara Brock Akil, Emma Thomas, Meghan Markle Contrarah: Gina Rodriguez/Letitia Wright, Alanah Pearce, Regina King/Kathryn Hahn/Marielle Heller (Contrarah can't count) Women are phenomenal. Thanks to Andrew Evans (as always) for the Beyond Bechdel score.
102 minutes | Feb 26, 2021
63 - Has Lesbian Cinema Finally Gone Mainstream?
To celebrate and commemorate LGBTQ History Month (in the UK) we take a look at lesbian cinema, focusing on movies that put gay relationships front and centre. Join Contrarah and Nick as they discuss what's good and bad about films made in the 1960s, the 2010s and right now in 2021, and the complexities of putting queer stories about women on screen.
78 minutes | Feb 8, 2021
62 - Wandavision. Why it's good, What has happened and ALL of the Theories.
We turn our attention to Wandavision, the mystery box show that everyone is talking about and nobody fully understands. If you have a passing interest in the new Disney+ show but don't have the energy to find out what's happening, let Contrarah do the hard work for you. She sets out why it's such a female-friendly show, then gives an episode by episode recap for the first five episodes (both parts are spoiler-free), before moving to a full on geek-out investigating all the spoilers, all the theories and all the wild speculation as to what this show means for the MCU and beyond. Timecodes: Part 1 - Celebrating Wandavision: 02:46 - 15:10 Part 2 - Episode 1-5 Quick-fire Recaps: 15:25 - 40:00 Part 3 - Full SPOILER and Speculation: 40:30 - 1:17:00 This is for you... and For The Children
74 minutes | Jan 19, 2021
61 - 5 Movies that Predicted 2021 Politics
Welcome to a new era...of (hopefully) better, kinder government. The film industry has seen its fair share of political scandal and Contrarah wonders if we can learn lessons from movies, especially those made many years ago. We discuss 5 movies spanning a period of worldwide political upheaval from the 1940s all the way to end of the last century, and find an uncanny resonance with what's happening in 2021. Join us for a trip down memory lane just before a new US inauguration.
86 minutes | Jan 4, 2021
60 - The New Oscar Rules & Movies We Love that Break Them with Kristin Janssen of SIWTS
2021! A new year and a renewed opportunity to get excited about the Academy Awards! Kinda... Soon the Academy will be implementing a new set of diversity and inclusion rules, which can't come soon enough. Kristin Janssen - podcast host of So...I'm Watching this Show joins Contrarah to break down the rules and talk about the films she loves and loathes, many of which wouldn't be eligible for nomination under the new rules. Join us for in-depth chat and fits of giggles. Read the new rules here: https://www.oscars.org/news/academy-establishes-representation-and-inclusion-standards-oscarsr-eligibility Follow Kristin and co-host Will's pod exploits on http://soimwatching.com/ Let us have your thoughts on twitter and at firstname.lastname@example.org Be Kind and Redefine.
121 minutes | Dec 11, 2020
59 - Mank
This is part 3 of a now 4-part series (screw chronology) because Mank is a movie with so many layers it demands its own episode! While David Fincher is definitely not the greatest closet feminist of all time, Mank says a lot about Hollywood hierarchies, gender roles, politics and numerous power battles. It's a masterpiece, and requires an explainer. So Contrarah and Nick watched both Mank and Citizen Kane, to help them take you through all of the inside baseball that Fincher delivers about a certain Herman J Mankiewicz. It's the Magic of the Movies, baby!
33 minutes | Dec 1, 2020
58 - Why 2020 was a Great Year for TV Soundtracks
Yeah, yeah 2020 is a living hellscape...but...is it though? The prestige TV world is booming and this year we were able to enjoy some of the best shows around. Also, we could finally concentrate on listening to the music behind these big shows. Music can be very subjective, as Contrarah found out, when a tweet called one of her favourite 2020 TV songs THE MOST ANNOYING! (she hasn't yet recovered) Judge for yourself whether you agree with our taste, as we take you on a musical journey through the TV themes of 2020. Further reading: Synchtank's piece on female composers: https://www.synchtank.com/blog/where-are-the-female-composers-in-film-tv-and-production-music-and-what-can-we-do-to-address-this/ shesaid.so: https://www.shesaid.so/ Listen up!
112 minutes | Nov 23, 2020
57 - David Fincher - Part 2
In Part 2 of this series, we're still to determine whether David Fincher is the greatest closet feminist of all time? In this period Fincher starts to utilise a range of female characters, takes a view on disability and even hires some (read: a few) people of colour. But we cannot deny that the brilliantly dark auteur treats people as people, and that's to be commended. Come listen to our amusing analysis, where Fincher's dark soul tries to reach for the light! David Fincher - friend or foe of film feminism? The jury's still out...
131 minutes | Oct 18, 2020
56 - David Fincher
Is David Fincher the greatest hidden feminist of all time? Unlikely, but his movies appeal to all of our darker desires. Join us on a poorly lit but beautifully sounding journey through the director's back catalogue, and then decide for yourself: Fincher - friend or foe of film feminism?
26 minutes | Sep 13, 2020
53 - Loathe Like Love: Cognitive Dissonance
You know when you feel all the feelings, including thinking two completely opposed beliefs at the same time? You know the one: Me: I hate this show, it's so trashy/horrifying/boring! Also me: I love this show it's the best ever/I can't look away!! That's what this episode is about. Send us your conflicting opinions: @Beyond_Bechdel and email@example.com and beyondbechdel.com
93 minutes | Aug 31, 2020
52 - TENET
A special bonus episode about the film that is going to 'save cinema'. Contrarah has braved TENET twice so she and Nick (a one-time slightly confused viewer) review and breakdown Christopher Nolan's latest complex and controversial spy caper. NOTE: The episode is broken down into 1) A non-spoiler section, 2) a full detailed plot analysis and 3) spoiler-filled discussion. See time codes below: 00:30 - 33.05 Part One: Discussion of TENET - no spoilers, all confusion. 33.:23 - 54:48 Part Two: Full plot explainer - if you're confused after watching or want to see TENET while holding all the cards completely spoiled, this is for you. 55:00 to end Part Three: A spoiler-filled review of the plot mechanics, characters and ideas in this crazy masterpiece. Here is the visual timeline mentioned in the ep (a gigantic spoiler): https://www.reddit.com/r/tenet/comments/ii38sl/tenet_character_timeline_my_first_attempt_to_map/?utm_source=amp&utm_medium=&utm_content=post_title What happened, happened.
17 minutes | Aug 27, 2020
51 - Loathe, Like, Love: The Best Book of 2020
While we work on season 3, let's look at some things we love, and some that we loathe. In this episode: reading matter!
17 minutes | Aug 19, 2020
50 - Loathe, Like, Love
While we work on season 3, let's look at some things we love, and some that we loathe...
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