Every year on the 8th of March, International Women’s Day is celebrated to honor women’s extraordinary achievements throughout history and across nations. As I scroll through Instagram, I would see most sharing photos of the women who have inspired them while some channel girl power by wearing a statement tee on how great being a woman really is. If you’re a movie buff, here are 10 recommended female-centric movies to watch that will trigger your feminist awakening.
Warning: May contain spoilers.
This one has got to be my favourite Disney princess. This isn’t a damsel-in-distress-who-is-waiting-to-be-saved-by-prince-charming kind of movie. Although living under a patriarchal regime, Mulan’s a warrior who secretly disguises as her father to save him from death in the army and cleverly defeats the Hun invasion.
2.Battle of the Sexes
A sports-comedy movie with a blend of facts with fiction, this movie is based on a true story of the 1973 tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs. With King’s determination to fight for equal rights for women’s players, Riggs, a hustler and a showman, comes up with the idea of an exhibition match. It’s not just a tennis match. It’s a match between feminism and chauvinism. Adding to the pressure, King struggle to come to terms with her sexuality with the extramarital romance with her hairdresser, Marilyn Barnett.
An oldie but goldie (also one of the most expensive films that nearly bankrupted Twentieth Century Fox). It chronicles the romance, betrayal and decadence of the Egyptian Queen, Cleopatra, as she attempts to resist the imperial ambitions of Rome.
A broad, glossy teen comedy about a fashionable sorority girl and above all, a natural blonde, who attempts to win back her ex-boyfriend when he thinks she is too blond. To prove that she’s not an airhead, she decides to follow him to law school but only then she discovers Harvard Law is a far cry from the comforts of her poolside and the mall. In the process, Elle finds out there is something more to her than just looks.
5.Devil Wears Prada
Andy, a smart but sensible college graduate with big dreams lands a jobs as an assistant to her demanding editor-in-chief a.k.a b*tch boss from hell of the fashion magazine Runway. This movie allows us to take a look at strong female roles and an artificial look into the fashion industry. Starring Anne Hathaway who cast as Andy, this reminds me of another film that echos the appealing feminist position.
6.Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement
Still adapting to her new role since the transformation from a gawky, schoolish teen into an elegant, sophisticated princess, Mia returns to Genovia and her grandmother informs the one thing that’s stopping her from becoming queen : the princess must marry to gain her crown. Followed by humorous and entertaining plots when Princess Mia sets out to find the “perfect” husband and in the end, the movie sends a feminist message when she chooses passion over character.
Nothing like an action packed movie with a butt-kicking female hero, Lara Croft is a fiercely independent daughter of an eccentric adventurer who vanished when she was a teen. Unable to accept the mysterious disappearance of her father even after seven years, she continues to search at her dad’s last known destination: a fabled tomb on a mythical island. Pushing herself beyond her limits as she journeys through this perilous adventure which she earns the name tomb raider.
Wonder Woman is a full package of beauty, brains and brawn – a feminist icon since 1941. Diana, princess of the Amazons is trained to be an unconquerable warrior. When an American pilot, Captain Steve Trevor, crashes on the shore during his escape from the Imperial German Army, Diana and her sisters hear about the conflict in the outside world. Determined to end all wars, she discovers her full powers and her true destiny.
9.Bend It Like Beckham
Break the stereotypes when it comes to football. A strict Indian family in London tries to raise their daughter in a traditional way who believes that Jess has two great duties in life: to learn to prepare a complete Indian meal and marry a nice Indian boy. However, Jess dreams of being a soccer star and of course, by conservative beliefs, an Indian girl should not play soccer and it consists of displaying your bare legs to complete strangers. Jess comes up with excuses to hid her matches from her family and also dealing with her crush on her coach, Joe.
10.She’s The Man
When Viola’s soccer team at Cornwall gets cut, she disguises herself as her twin brother, Sebastian, to join the boys’ team. Complications arise when she falls in love with her roommate, Duke who has a serious crush on Olivia. It gets messy when Olivia likes Sebastian (who’s is Viola in disguise, Fyi) because he/she has a sensitive side. It gets even more problematic when the REAL Sebastian comes home early and finds out he has been replaced by his twin sister.