BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM
2002 was a banner year for women filmmakers. More big-screen films were released by women in 2002 than any prior year in the entire history of film. These movies were produced, written, and directed primarily by women, which is a true rarity in the usually male-dominated world of film. Although many of these movies never received more than limited nationwide distribution, some are currently available for perusal at your local DVD store or multiplex.
I highly recommend writer-director Nicole Holofcener's dysfunctional-family
portrait called "Lovely and Amazing," a
For those who liked the tri-storytelling of "The Hours," I
highly favor renting writer-director Rebecca Miller's "Personal Velocity,"
which is divided into three separate short films revolving around three
very different women. All of the issues raised in each short film are
worthy of feature-length treatment. This one also won the Independent
Spirit award for Best Low-Budget Film of 2002. Most notable of all of
2002's female directors is Caroline Link, from Germany, who's "Nowhere
in Africa" won the Best Foreign Film Oscar this year. Her film is
probably the most unique WW2
Another Oscar winner (in two categories) is the visually fantastic "Frida,"
director Julie Taymor's extremely unique blend of art and drama, which
successfully combines the paintings of Frida Kahlo with her tumultuous
life story and marriage to artist Diego Rivera. On the comedy side, writer-actress
Nia Vardalos won the year with "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," which
attained the status of 'Highest Grossing Independent Film' of all time.
However, since most of you have already seen that one, you might look
a new imported comedy that has been winning raves overseas this past year
and has finally made it to our shores. It's female writer-director Gurinder
Chadha's "Bend It like Beckham," a delightful and uplifting
story (NO subtitles - set in England) with a universal sense of family
comedy (much like "Greek Wedding"). The major plotlline revolves
around two British girls (one is East Indian) who have their hearts set
on becoming women soccer ('football' in England) players against their
parent's wishes. Excellent performances all around make this comedically
enjoyable while adding an exciting sports subplot that showcases some
of the best female players in the world. It's
And 2003 has just begun so get in on the ground floor and check these women filmmakers out!
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