Posted by: hellonhairylegs | December 1, 2008

Penelope

Director: Mark Palansky

Actors: Christina Ricci, Catherine O’Hara, Reese Witherspoon, James McAvoy

This film is another example of empowerful feminism in Hollywood. My evil plan is thus:

Anti-Feminism-> Not Feminism-> Empowerful Feminism-> Liberal Feminism-> Radical Feminism.

It’ll work.

Anyway, this is a good movie for all ages; the type of movie you don’t have to spend forty minutes dissecting the sexist crap afterwards. Allow for the fact it is a modern fairytale in which a girl is cursed by an evil witch with the face of a pig.

There are three main issues in the movie, the stereotypes of the shrill mother and the Nice Guy are the first two. The other major issue is that there are no POC in speaking roles. Really not ok. This movie is by no means a pure feminist work.

Besides that, the movie was pretty freaking epic. The visuals were quirky enough to be interesting without being pretentious. The movie was funny and uplifting. The overall message was that you can love yourself. If the movie had featured any LGBT characters the message might have been more profound.

It had moments of brilliance. It aced the Bechdel test and it mixes fantasy with reality in an intriguing way. The acting is solid and I’m informed by my Fellow Spawn that James McAvoy is really hot (My other evil plan is to get him to play the Doctor so they will watch Who with me). Personally, I love it when dudes are relegated to the role of love interest, even if they always seem to get a better back story than the women who usually play those roles. Reese Witherspoon was only in about ten minutes of the movie but she was utterly awesome, acting as a supportive friend to Ricci’s Penelope.

A good light movie as long as you’re not expecting too much. Two stars.

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