The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951).
Over at RogerEbert.com, Bob Calhoun discusses the liberated women of 1950s sci-fi cinema — classics like Them! (1954) and The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954) — and why the woman scientist archetype waned in later decades:
In her October 8, 2013 RogerEbert.com piece, “Visual Pleasure and Voodoo Demographics: a Reflection on Woman and Film,” Carrie Rickey writes that “in the 1930s and 1940s each studio has female screenwriters to create female characters.”
With the collapse of the studio system, the woman scientist character seemed to vanish from future remakes and re-imaginings of ‘50s science fiction movies even as more actual women scientists graduated from America’s universities.
…There are also no lady ichthyologists on the expedition to kill the shark in Steven Spielberg’s “Jaws” (1975), Universal’s slick updating of its “Creature from the Black Lagoon” formula. Spielberg also has no space for educated women in his 2005 remake of “War of the Worlds,” reducing Ann Robinson from the original to a cameo as a grandmother, and casting an 11-year-old Dakota Fanning in the film’s most prominent female role.
Cynthia Lowen’s latest documentary "Battleground" offers an eye-opening window into the anti-choice movement, featuring three women from varying walks of life who have dedicated themselves to rendering abortion illegal. Per the Tribeca website: “Told with restraint and balance, director Cynthia Lowen seeks to clarify rather than condemn, and presents a new point of entry for this challenging topic.” While the film itself clearly aligns with progressive pro-choice advocates (who also appear throughout) it offers a fascinating perspective on the sheer systemic power of the anti-abortion movement and the perilous future, felt painfully today, of Roe v. Wade. "Battleground" was Executive Produced by NYWIFT member Ruth Ann Harnisch and co-produced by member Steffie van Rhee, who sat down with us to discuss the premiere and how this film – from this particular perspective – came to fruition.READ MORE
Signe Baumane’s "My Love Affair With Marriage" is a brilliant animated film for a decidedly adult audience. It’s a semi-autobiographical musical exploration of love, sex, romance, and gender as viewed through the lens of neurochemistry – not your average animated love story! New York Women in Film & Television was proud to present Baumane with a NYWIFT Ravenal Foundation Feature Film Grant for the film, and even prouder to then see it premiere at the 2022 Tribeca Festival! We sat down with Signe to discuss her wildly inventive, intelligent, and very fun film.READ MORE
Recap: NYWIFT Talks with Julie Taymor and Kimberly Guerrero About “The Glorias” and Getting Out the Vote
NYWIFT blogger Kristin Reiber Harris reflects on our powerful conversation with the team behind The Glorias, including Julie Taymor's creative process, the celebration of Native voices, and how we as women live in constant dialogue with our former selves.READ MORE
Two NYWIFT members have joined forces with a team of immigrant women filmmakers to tell the story of WORK, a short film written and directed by Aoife Williamson. WORK, a comedy-drama, follows Lilith, a musician scrambling to create a song in one day to submit for a job that could sky-rocket her music career. It just so happens that this day is a very busy day at her money job... and it just so happens that her “money job” is as a sex worker, named Eve.READ MORE