So, just as I promised here are the next 5 movies, rounding out my Top 10 movies featuring awesome female characters. Like I said in the other post, these ones are more grown-up...so without further ado, here they are in no particular order.
5. Erin Brokovich - The wonderful Julia Roberts plays an unemployed mom of 3 kids who, after losing a personal injury lawsuit, asks her lawyer for a job - and gets one in his office. In her new job, she gets her teeth into a juicy file, and uncovers a systematic cover-up of industrial poisoning in her hometown. She launches a committed investigation to get to the bottom of it and eventually brings the guilty company to justice. Maybe I just actually love the fact that this is a true story - but someone made it a movie and Julia Roberts rocks in it, so it made this list.
4. Silence of the Lambs - In a movie and a genre that revolves around the objectification of women, Jodi Foster plays Clarice Starling, an FBI agent who defies all the usual stereotypes. She's tough, smart, and assured in a role normally reserved for men. She gets the job done, without being rescued or assisted. She objects to the objectification that happens all around her, at the crimes, at work with the FBI, and at the prison. It all just works and I love it.
3. North Country - Charlize Theron is super in this role, based on real-life Lois Jenson who initiated and won a harassment lawsuit against the mine where she worked. Again, maybe I just love the fact that it's a true story, but Charlize and co-star Frances McDormand do an incredible job of re-telling it. After being raped at 16 by a teacher, getting pregnant and having a baby; after leaving an abusive relationship to move in with her emotionally abusive parents, and after enduring cruel and verbal and physical assault at her work at the local mine, Charlize's character has enough. She sues the company and as the fight unfolds, her family and hometown are forced to face the truth about her past. It was a tear-jerker for me, and definitely a front-runner for this list.
2. Thelma and Louise - So while I wouldn't describe these 2 as 'positive role-models', it is just a movie and I concede that the guns, violence and murder all have some place in the story. They aren't the reasons I love this movie though. The reason I love this movie, is that when you look past the violence and the mayhem, it's about female friendship. It's about change, and growth and not being taken advantage of. They're free to make their mistakes, and free to choose their fate. They have guts and passion and a commitment to each other. It's all about them, and I love it. The classy duo of Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis rock, still.
1. The Queen - This might be a surprise one and maybe it's only making the list because of all the recent Royal shenanigans, but I really think it deserves a place. Helen Mirren is amazing as Queen Elizabeth II in this movie that depicts the events following Diana's death in 1997. I partly love it because Helen Mirren is a walking legend, but also because, again, the true story behind the movie is incredible. Unknown to many, the Queen was an army driver and mechanic at age 18. Despite public expectation, she didn't take her husbands surname, and I love that she can clear a room without saying a word. She is a force; a classy, publicly stoic force with complete dedication to what she believes in. I love the real-life version, and the movie version.
And there we have it. That's the list. I'd love to hear what you think, or your suggestions!