Women Make Film

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Women Make Film is a documentary film by the British-Irish filmmaker and film critic Mark Cousins. The film premiered on 1 September 2018 at the Venice Film Festival, and was released on the BFI Player in May 2020.[1][2][3]

The film is divided into 40 chapters over 14 hours and features the work of 183 directors.[3]

In the 1990s, Cousins curated a season of documentary films and realised later he had only included a single film made by a woman. This got him interested in finding and highlighting women filmmakers from around the world and throughout film history, eventually leading to the creation of this documentary. The premise of the film is that it is not about women filmmakers or institutional sexism; rather it is a documentary about film itself, and it explores 40 different aspects of filmmaking, drawing from a wide range of films as examples, all of which are made by women.[3]

The academic Laura Mulvey curated the inaugural Women's Film Event at the Edinburgh film festival in 1972, the blurb for their event stated that "A festival of men's films would be simply absurd. It's because so few women have been able to make films that this festival exists". Mulvey said of Women Make Film that "The amazing extent of the work, with over a thousand clips, has the potential to bring women directors out of gender categorisation and into film history as such. But it also offers an unprecedented opportunity to enjoy women's cinematic vision and reflect on the way women have seen and indeed made the world through film – a source of wonder and of speculation!"[3]

The documentary is narrated by Adjoa Andoh, Jane Fonda, Kerry Fox, Thandiwe Newton, Tilda Swinton, Sharmila Tagore and Debra Winger.[3][4][5]

The Birds' Eye View charity will host weekly viewing parties and Facebook Live responses and debates on the documentary from women filmmakers for audiences at home during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns.[3]

List of chapters[edit]

Introductions[edit]

Openings[edit]

Tone[edit]

Believability[edit]

Introducing a Character[edit]

Meet Cute[edit]

Conversation[edit]

Framing[edit]

Tracking[edit]

Staging[edit]

Journey[edit]

Discovery[edit]

Adult/Child[edit]

Economy[edit]

Editing[edit]

POV[edit]

Close Up[edit]

Surrealism and Dreams[edit]

Bodies[edit]

Sex[edit]

Home[edit]

Religion[edit]

Work[edit]

Politics[edit]

Gear Change[edit]

Comedy[edit]

Melodrama[edit]

Sci-Fi[edit]

Horror and Hell[edit]

Tension[edit]

Stasis[edit]

Leave Out[edit]

Reveal[edit]

Memory[edit]

Time[edit]

Life Inside[edit]

The Meaning of Life[edit]

Love[edit]

Death[edit]

Endings[edit]

Song and Dance[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "'Women Make Film': Film Review – Venice 2018". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 8 May 2020.
  2. ^ "Jane Fonda to narrate second part of Venice doc 'Women Make Film' (exclusive)". Screen. Retrieved 8 May 2020.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Kate Muir (8 May 2020). "'It's a mistresspiece!': the 14-hour film about forgotten female directors". The Guardian. Retrieved 8 May 2020.
  4. ^ "Women Make Film". British Film Institute.
  5. ^ "In 'Women Make Film,' a 14-hr epic of an overlooked history". ABC News.

External links[edit]