So they always put a girl character in movies for someone to fall in love with?
my 7 year old son (astutely calling attention to the lack of female leads in action and adventure films).
While watching Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz flirt in POTC On Stranger Tides my son asked me “Why is there always romance in every movie?” He had asked the same question last week when we watched Kirsten Dunst and Toby Maguire have their memorable moment in the rain in Spiderman. He’s 7 and not a fan of kissing scenes. I try to explain that many people, especially adults, enjoy romance so it’s a popular thing in movies.
He responds with “So they always put a girl character in for someone to fall in love with?” And I am floored, because I realize the message Hollywood has sent my child is that you only need to include one female character - and it’s not so she can be the hero. If a 7 year old boy can recognize that women in action films are nothing but a plot device it is time for the film industry to admit they have a problem.
Yep. Long past time. Unfortunately this problem goes back to at least the 1930s.
"Hotel Room, Place de la Republique" (1976) by Helmut Newton. I’ve always loved that the composition of this photo led the eye to the telephone reflected in the mirror. What this suggests in terms of narrative is that the girl is here by her own consent. She could use the phone to call for help if she wanted to, but she doesn’t.