What I've Been Watching #3

  Here is my third installment of how I've been avoiding socialization What I've Been Watching


  First and foremost: Locke. I watched this film on a whim, and it was absolutely brilliant. The entirety of the movie takes place in a car, where Tom Hardy is driving towards a... certain destination, and passes the time by making many consecutive phone calls. But despite the unconventional setting, it never got boring. It was downright compelling, and I was so surprised at how this movie had me on the edge of my seat. I honestly don't know how to stress to you how incredible this movie was. I mean, I cried twice. And at the end of it, all I could think was: This is what filmmaking SHOULD BE. Just pure, unadulterated, captivating storytelling. If a story is good, it shouldn't matter if there is a sex scene or explosions or a dreamy lead actor. If a story is good, the entire two hour movie could take place in a car, driving through England at night. It's safe to say that this movie affected me a little bit, and I'd therefore highly recommend it. 

  Next is Take This Waltz. This movie also made me cry. A LOT. It was about life, and how you can never be sure you're making the right choice but that doesn't mean you shouldn't choose. It was about how the in-between spaces can suck, and are oftentimes utterly terrifying. It was about how we're all afraid of being afraid and afraid of connections. (That last one is something I've had many a late night panic attack over.) It was beautiful, artistic, poetic, raw, and real. Michelle Williams was lovely and otherworldly, and Seth Rogen proved that he can actually play a character other than himself. Who knew, right?



  Finally, on a whim this past Saturday I decided to see Mad Max: Fury Road by myself, which was quite the experience. I don’t know why it’s considered so taboo and lame to go to the movies by yourself, but I decided I didn't really care. I had my heart set on seeing Mad Max, because I had heard that it was badass, well written, and most importantly, hella feministSo I did that. AND IT WAS FREAKING AWESOME. But before I get into my myriad of thoughts on the subject, I'd like to share with you another list I made.

Pros of going to the movies by yourself:
You don't have to listen to anyone talk through the trailers
You don't have to share your popcorn
You can write on your phone during all of the trailers for cars and ABC Family shows 
You get to see the movie with a bunch of old people, who are super quiet because they can't hear to begin with

Cons of going to the movies by yourself:
There's no one to watch your seat when you inevitably have to pee during the 5 hours of trailers
Since you don't have to share your popcorn, you end up eating all of it by yourself. This becomes a problem later on...
There's no one to rant to after you've just had a spiritual awakening in an action movie

   In any case, back to the movie. I did a mini review of sorts in my Weekly Vlog last week, but I'll say this anyway: This movie was damn near perfect. In action movies, you rarely ever see badass female characters, let alone women of color, or women with significant speaking roles. This film had all of the above (in abundance) and more. Not only did the women have more lines than any of the men, including Mad Max himself, but their character development also went above and beyond anything I've ever seen in a summer blockbuster action movie. An early review I read said something like, "this film puts the bechdel test to shame..." which I must wholeheartedly agree with. This film proves that not only is the tried-and-true action movie formula worn out, outdated, and irrelevant, but it proves that we're really better off without it. 

   This movie has made nearly $300 million worldwide, and I think it's because more women are in the audience. Why? (Hint: It's not because of Tom Hardy's killer body.) It's because George Miller decided to tell a culturally relevant, relatable tale set in a post-apocalyptic world. It's because he decided to show women (of a variety of ethnicities) kicking ass, getting revenge on their captor, and developing as human beings. It's because he decided to show women as people, and not mere sexual objects for the lead actor to interact with. It's because he decided to tell a story about sexual violence, and the horrors that women are often faced with, without actually showing gratuitous sexual violence. This movie is as much of a feminist film for men as it is for women. Tom Hardy's portrayal of Mad Max was beautiful and brilliant, and was in such stark contrast to the other violent, power-hungry men on the screen. He showed that a man can be powerful, badass, and cool, without needing to abuse women to get there. Max's complex relationship with Charlize Theron's character, Furiosa, showed that not all relationships between men and women have to be purely sexual. They had a bond, a true connection, and we didn't need to see them make out to understand that. In essence, Mad Max: Fury Road is more than worth your time and money. And I'll just say it: I liked it way more than Avengers: Age of Ultron

I hope you found some new movies to see and love this weekend! :)

 -Fran