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Gender Inequality in Film Survey



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Mon Sep 29, 2014 9:19 pm
Sylar says...



I'm writing a research paper on this in school and I would love if you could answer these questions for me:


Are you a boy or a girl?

How old are you?

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)

Are there 2 or more female characters?

Do they talk to each other?

Do they talk about something other then a man?

Is the main character a female?

If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?

Why?

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?
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Mon Sep 29, 2014 9:44 pm
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Nutty says...



Are you a boy or a girl?

Hehehe. I'm female.

How old are you?

Twenty two.

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)

Heavy question. I'll give you five off of the top of my head without overthinking it, or I'll be here forever.

1. Wings of Desire
2. Dogville
3. Bringing up Baby
4. Sound of Music
5. Dancer in the Dark

Are there 2 or more female characters?

1. I believe not?
2. Yes.
3. Yes.
4. Yes.
5. Yes.


Do they talk to each other?
1. N/A
2. Yes.
3. Yes.
4. Yes.
5. Yes.

Do they talk about something other then a man?

1. N/A
2. Yes.
3. Yes.
4. Yes.
5. Yes.

Is the main character a female?

1. No.
2. Yes.
3. It's kind of a 50/50?
4. Yes.
5. Yes.


If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?

I'd like to, but films heavily lean towards empowering male characters a lot of the time. I tend to actively seek out films that pass the bechdal test.

Why?

I'd imagine it reflects and perpetrates society's attitudes towards women- there are much fewer women in the top level of directing, for instance.

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?

You should check out the Guerilla Girls- they are a female- run anonymous art group who protest a lot of women's issues, including representation in hollywood.
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Mon Sep 29, 2014 10:05 pm
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Bloo says...



Are you a boy or a girl?
Noncommittal shrug

How old are you?
18

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)
Pacific Rim

Are there 2 or more female characters?
Yeah, but the second one is pretty minor.

Do they talk to each other?
Nope.

Do they talk about something other then a man?
Well they didn't talk.

Is the main character a female?
She is part of the leading pair.

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?
While I do think the Bechdel Test is a greater marker for tracking female representation across the board in media, it doesn't always work amazingly on single films. Pacific Rim definitely suffers from a lack of female cast members, but the character of Mako is still a fantastic character that deserves attention, because she is one of few females that get to have agency. While movies may pass the Bechdel test, that doesn't make the movie a good example of female representation, because it is very common for the women to still be treated secondarily to the male cast

Edit: Feel the need to clarify a bit.

Bechdel is very important, it shows just how much the film industry fails to do something so simple, but it was made to be very simple and bare bones, so it loses power on individual films. Two female characters talking is really so minor, which is the point of the test, it is sad that only a small percentage of films can say they pass that. There is no valid reason not to pass it, but there are a (rare) few movies, like Pacific Rim, that while unable to pass the test, still show great female leads that should be something more movies strive to portray. The fact that a movie with a single female character is still better than a lot is sad, but doesn't mean it should be ignored, because Mako Mori is a very important character.
Last edited by Bloo on Tue Sep 30, 2014 6:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Mon Sep 29, 2014 10:14 pm
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Love says...



Sylar wrote:I'm writing a research paper on this in school and I would love if you could answer these questions for me:


Are you a boy or a girl?
Male!

How old are you?
19 ^_^

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)
Battle Royale? XD

Are there 2 or more female characters?
Yea :3

Do they talk to each other?
Yes!

Do they talk about something other then a man?
Yep. They try to murder each other! >XD

Is the main character a female?
There are two. One is female.

If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?

Why?

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?
Not really...
I was Amareth :)
  





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Mon Sep 29, 2014 10:26 pm
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Lumi says...



Are you a boy or a girl?
I am male.

How old are you?
Twenty-two.

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)
1. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
2. Beginners
3. Everything Is Illuminated
4. Kill Bill
5. Tree of Life

Are there 2 or more female characters?
1. Yes.
2. Yes.
3. Yes.
4. Yes.
5. No. I say no because the female "lead" has no spoken/scripted name. Just "Mrs. O'Brian" which is just a reference to her husband.

Do they talk to each other?
1. Yes.
2. Yes.
3. No.
4. Yes.

Do they talk about something other than a man?
1. No
2. No
3. N/A
4. Yes.

Is the main character a female?
1. No
2. No
3. No
4. Yes
5. No, but it's debatable

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?
I think that it's a shame that there's such an obvious inequality that something like the Bechdel Test can exist--though I am glad it does. I'm certain that the future will, albeit slowly, bring in culturally accepted and praised films that do not just pass a test, but rather celebrate that women are just as personalized as men (hella shocking, I know). I'm bad at this, but basically I'm optimistic, as long as people like you care about these things.
I am a forest fire and an ocean, and I will burn you just as much
as I will drown everything you have inside.
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Mon Sep 29, 2014 10:40 pm
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cheeb says...



Are you a boy or a girl?
Image
(but in all seriousness, I am a male)

How old are you?
26

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)
Image
(specifically the first one. i love all three but only the first is able to stand on its own)

Are there 2 or more female characters?
Yes.

Do they talk to each other?
The "main" two female roles never talk to each other as far as I remember.

Do they talk about something other than a man?
Not to one another.

Is the main character a female?
No.

If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character? Why?
This question isn't for me. Either that, or I've been buying the wrong kind of underwear.

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?
Ehhhhh I don't think so? I'm the kind of person who is entirely clueless about this kind of thing. >_>
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Mon Sep 29, 2014 10:43 pm
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ExOmelas says...



Are you a boy or a girl?
Girl

How old are you?
16

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)
1. Back to the Future
2. Starter For Ten
3. Robots
4. Shrek
5. Ice age

Are there 2 or more female characters?
1. Yes
2. Yes
3. Yes
4. Yes, but one is a dragon.
5. I don't think there's a girl with a speaking part in the whole film... Woah.

Do they talk to each other?
1. No, but to be fair they live thirty years apart.
2. Yes
3. Yes
4. No, one is a dragon
5. N/A... that's making me so sad...

Do they talk about something other then a man?
1. N/A
2. Yes, they speak together only once (I think) and it's about politics.
3. Yes. Aunt Fan tries to convince Piper to stay at home while the men go fight the baddie (who's also a woman) but Piper shows up just before the battle with a civilian army and asks, 'Did I miss the butt-whoopin'?'
4. N/A, although if they did it would probably be about a male donkey
5. N/A

Is the main character a female?
1. No
2. No
3. No
4. No
5. No

If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?
Probably more male but empowerment is emphasised more with women eg in the case of The Hunger Games.

Why?
I never really think about it. I know that's wrong but as a viewer I'm more concerned about excitement and emotion from a film. I think I'm more likely to take notice of gender inequality when I'm reading. That's just a personal thing. I'm sure a movie buff who doesn't read that much would be the other way around on this issue.

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?
I think there's been an overcompensation. For centuries, women were portrayed as only delicate. Now, there seems to be something taboo about having a weak female character. Weak male characters occur about as often as strong ones. I think it is important that weak female characters are not seen as harming feminism and that we can have a more diverse mixture of weak, strong, confident, annoying, kind, brave, smart, stupid, insensitive female characters in film.

What fools these mortals be!
William Shakespeare
A Midsummer Night's Dream


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Well I do.

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Mon Sep 29, 2014 10:54 pm
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niteowl says...



Are you a boy or a girl?
Girl

How old are you?
24

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)
Don't have one these days, so I'll use one of my first faves: The Parent Trap (Lindsay Lohan version)

Are there 2 or more female characters? Yes

Do they talk to each other? Yep

Do they talk about something other then a man? Yes!

Is the main character a female? Both of them. ;)

If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?
Probably male

Why? I'm not sure, but I'm guessing since there are more movies with empowered male characters that I see more of those.

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?
What Lumi said.
Also, weirdly enough, I think a lot of Lindsay Lohan's movies pass the Bechdel test.
"You do ill if you praise, but worse if you censure, what you do not understand." Leonardo Da Vinci

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Tue Sep 30, 2014 12:38 am
Astronaut says...



You know who I am.

How am I supposed to pick one? Um... well... it's not my favorite, but I'll pick Mean Girls.

It passes the Beckdel (yes I know that is spelled wrong) test.

Yes, Cady is a girl.

I assume you sort of mean protagonist, in which case I actually say female. But, not in a good way. Lots of movies have a strong female lead simply for the sake of having a strong female lead, which is annoying. Can't there just be a strong lead who HAPPENS to be a girl?

I kind of already said that.

There also happen to be more strong supporting male characters.
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Spoiler! :
Bet you didn't see that coming...
  





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Tue Sep 30, 2014 1:09 am
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birk says...



Are you a boy or a girl?
Male.

How old are you?
23.

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)

1. 25th Hour
2. The Truman Show
3. The Lord of the Rings trilogy
4. Solaris
5. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Are there 2 or more female characters?
1. Yes.
2. Yes.
3. Yes.
4. Yes.
5. Yes.

Do they talk to each other?
1. Yes.
2. Yes.
3. Yes.
4. No.
5. Yes.

Do they talk about something other then a man?
1. No.
2. No.
3. No. This was a surprise to me. :|
4. N/A
5. No?

Is the main character a female?
1. No.
2. No.
3. No.
4. No.
5. No.

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?
As with both Lumi and Nite, it sucks that there's such a thing as the bechdel test around. There are many shining examples that stand out against it here and there and I'm hoping for more and more of them.

Oh, and both Alien and Thelma and Louise just barely missed out of the list. Darn. ;)
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Tue Sep 30, 2014 1:27 am
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Aley says...



Are you a boy or a girl?
Famale

How old are you?
Above 18

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)
1. Chicago
2. Princess Bride
3. Pride and Prejudice
4. My Fair Lady

Are there 2 or more female characters?
1. Yes
2. Yes
3. Yes
4. Yes

Do they talk to each other?
1. Yes
2. No
3. Yes
4. Yes

Do they talk about something other then a man?
1. Their speaking rolls do include more dialogue than about men. They do speak to each other about more than just men.
2. Their speaking rolls do include more dialogue than about men.
3. Their speaking rolls do include more dialogue than about men. They do speak to each other about more than just men.
4. Their speaking rolls do include more dialogue than about men. They do speak to each other about more than just men.

Is the main character a female?
1. Yes
2. Yes
3. Yes
4. Yes

If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?

Personally I find it odd that you qualify this question with "If you're a girl" because I'm sure men can see just as much about this issue as women do. I am no more likely to see a film because of the main character's sex. Out of all the movies I've seen, on average, I'd have to say that there are more male empowered characters than female empowered characters in the movies I have witnessed.

Why?

I remember them more is my guess. I mean, I remember Chicago pretty well, and Mulan, and there are a lot of empowered women in movies I watch, but there are just as many empowered men, and movies with empowered men that don't have empowered women.

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?

I think this really has to be a subject that comes down to years of movies. If we look at culture, and at movies in culture, we can probably determine at what point female characters became more prominent and powerful by the time society started accepting women's power. Just a thought.
  





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Tue Sep 30, 2014 3:12 am
Willard says...



Are you a boy or a girl?
Male
How old are you?
Catorce

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)
1. Her
2. Being John Malkovich
3. Fargo
4. A Clockwork Orange
5. Heathers
Are there 2 or more female characters?
1. Yes
2. Yes
3. I guess so?
4. Not really
5. Yes
Do they talk to each other?
1. At one point
2. Yes
3. No
4. No
5. Yes
Do they talk about something other than a man?
1. Yes
2. Yes
3. No
4. Lolno
5. Yes
Is the main character a female?
1. No
2. No
3. Yes
4. No
5. Yes
If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?

Why?

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?

I never really paid that much attention, but in the end, it depends on the writer
Last edited by Willard on Fri Oct 03, 2014 4:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Tue Sep 30, 2014 6:23 am
Skydreamer says...



Are you a boy or a girl?

Female

How old are you?

18

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)

1. My Fair Lady

2. Transformers

3. Father of The Bride 2

4. Fireproof

5. How To Train Your Dragon (1&2)

(Because I don't really have a favorite movie, these aren't always seen as my favorite movies but I really like them all.)


Are there 2 or more female characters?

1. Yes
2. Yes
3. Yes
4. Yes
5. Yes

Do they talk to each other?

1. Yes, although she doesn't really converse with anyone other than the main characters through-out the film. But she does talk to the maid who helps her to get ready.

2. Not really, not in the sense of main characters talking to each other, not that I can remember. (My memory is on lock-down right now, so if you know I'm wrong then I'm sorry.)

3. Yes.

4. Yes.

5. Yes.

Do they talk about something other then a man?

1. Yes, though briefly. It was the circumstance.

2. We don't really see the main character female's point of view through-out the movie.

3. Yes, though briefly, the story is kind of focused on relationships, so most of the time it had something to do with a man.

4. No.

5. Not really.

Is the main character a female?

1. Yes. (I'm thinking some might say that there is dual main character-ship between Eliza and Higgins but I think Eliza is the main character. It follows her life more.)

2. No.

3. No. (Although this is slightly debatable as well.)

4. Dual main character-ship between the wife and husband.

5. No.

If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?

Personally I find it odd that you qualify this question with "If you're a girl" because I'm sure men can see just as much about this issue as women do. I am no more likely to see a film because of the main character's sex.


I agree with Audy on this point. I'd suggest you allow this to be for both men and women to answer. I mean men can clearly see it as well.

For me, I think women are usually seen as more of a side-show for movies (that I can remember) women are rarely the leading role, and if she is, she's in some kind of crisis, rather than being in control of her life. If it is a comedy it usually has to do with men, and if it is anything there is pretty much always guaranteed sex appeal.

Why?

Why? It is because of culture. For a long time women have been viewed a certain way, and they continue to be viewed a certain way. I just hope that with new movements and time, things can change for the better.

Also, movie makers make what the people want, if more people wanted empowered women, who were smart and careful, and brilliant and did not flash parts of their body, then there would be movies like that.

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?

I think that people have to realize personally, how they view women and men in movies. And try to decipher what excites them about certain roles in movies, because that can also tell them where they stand in regards to gender inequality in film. It also can explain why certain movies are the way they are. We control more of the media than we think. If movie producers feel like people want to see women in more obvious and distinctive roles than they are usually given, then it will happen.
I believe in that, which is not seen.
I call it truth, faith, hope, life.


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Tue Sep 30, 2014 11:54 am
TakeThatYouFiend says...



Are you a boy or a girl?
Boy
How old are you?
15
What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)
Amelie
Are there 2 or more female characters?
Not really... Sort of, but not main characters
Do they talk to each other?
A bit, yeah...
Do they talk about something other then a man?
Yes, but it is a romance so you can't judge.
Is the main character a female?
Indeed
If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?

Why?

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film? There is sexism in real life, and gender differences in real life, even if these things are unfounded. So therefore reflection in film is only observational.
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Tue Sep 30, 2014 6:27 pm
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hiverious says...



Are you a boy or a girl?

shrugs

How old are you?

26

What is your favorite movie? (And if you can’t decide: top 5?)

1) Jurassic Park, but in the interest of covering more ground...

2) Alien

3) 2001: A Space Odyssey

4) The Evil Dead

5) Ghost in the Shell

Are there 2 or more female characters?

1) Yes

2) Yes

3) Yes in the Dawn of Man sequence

4) Yes

5) Yes (The Major, the secretary who is being ghost hacked, as much as she counts as a character rather than a plot point, and the women/gynoids? at the Section 6 Ops entre. The puppet master does not count... for obvious reasons)


Do they talk to each other?

1) Off screen at one point. I have seen this movie more than 60 times and honestly cannot remember if they spoke on screen to each other. The dinosaurs don't count because the raptors are the only ones that communicated and there is a subplot that was quickly dropped about dinosaurs changing sex in order to facilitate breeding (really fascinating in the novel), and the tracks of the babies used to illustrate this point were raptor tracks.

2) Yes

3) Yes

4) None of the Apes in this sequence really do much more than posturing

5) No (The puppet master doesn't count)

Do they talk about something other then a man?

1) The one off screen conversation was about Alan Grant.

2) Yes

3) N/A

4) I don't remember, most likely not. The dialogue is not why I like The Evil Dead

5) N/A

Is the main character a female?

1) ensemble

2) ensemble/yes/final girl

3) no

4) Cannon fodder

5) Yes

If you’re a girl: Do you see more films with an empowered female character or an empowered male character?

Why?


Not a girl. In any case the films I tend to gravitate towards are science fiction/horror films (if that isn't clear :P). Unfortunately, sci-fi and horror films are generally marketed towards a young male demographic and tend to feature predominantly male protagonists.

That being said, watch The Girl Who Leapt Through Time. It's a delightfully charming sci-fi flick with an interesting female lead.

Also Emily Blunt in Edge of Tomorrow. Much stronger character than in the novel. Doug Liman considers her the main character and Cruise as the facilitator of her story.

Anything else you’d like to add about gender inequality in film?

The problem with female representation in film goes right down to the industry that propped itself up on the film industry. When you have interviewers asking Anne Hathaway what she did to look so amazing in a role where she looked malnourished, you kind of have a deeply routed systemic and societal problem.

There's also the matter of the MPAA's decision making surrounding male and female sexuality in film. Ryan Gosling ruminated about this in relation to the MPAA's treatment of Blue Valentine, and it is kind of depressing really.

Side note: Jurassic Park was the movie that introduced me to the concept of sexism in overt and covert forms, including in the guise of chivalry.

John Hammond: [Ellie is going out to the maintenance shed to switch the circuit breakers, the dinosaurs are on the loose] It ought to be me really going.
Dr. Ellie Sattler: Why?
John Hammond: Well, I'm a... And you're, um, a...
Dr. Ellie Sattler: Look... We can discuss sexism in survival situations when I get back.

Another interesting thing to note is that Ellie is portrayed as incredibly competent and driven, from her encounter with a sick triceratops, to her looking for Hammond's grand children near the Tyranosaur Paddock, to her being the one who went out to the maintenance shed.

Fun activity: Compare Ellie's characterisation to every other female character in the Jurassic Park film franchise (We can cut Lex some slack since she's a kid and she did get the locks and phones operational again).

I suppose my point is the Bechdel Test was never ever meant as a test as much as it was meant as a satirical jab in a queer comic strip.

I may or may not have misremembered this but Sigourney Weaver was the first woman to receive a fee of $1 million when FOX approached her to reprise her role as Ripley in Aliens.



I have also heard good things about the book "Men Women and Chainsaws" and have been meaning to get my hands on a copy. Is about gender and horror cinema.


ETA:

When I say Strong female character, I do not mean that she is Strong in the conventional physical strength way, but that her character is compelling, fleshed out, has agency and important to the narrative.

For example, Jennifer Lawrence's character in American Hustle.
  








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