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Looking for a good flick or five to settle into? As a tribute to
International Women's Day 2016, we present to you five great movies
that have women as the main protagonists. These stories cover a range
of genres and inspire all the emotions. Most importantly, they're
quality viewing for women and men alike. After all, a great
story is a great story. And rest assured - no spoilers ahead.
5. The Help (2011)
Set in Mississippi in the racially-segregated 1960s, The
Help gives a voice to the mostly voiceless… the black female
servants who work for white, middle class families. Based on Kathryn
Stockett's novel of the same name, this story unfolds from a
perspective we rarely get to see. It's a perfect distillation of the
hypocrisies and pettiness surrounding race and class. Plus, some great
performances from Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer. Best
moment: who can forget the front yard full of discarded toilets?
4. Thelma and Louise (1991)
Two bored Texas housewives (Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon) hit the
road for a brief respite from their unfulfilling lives. But after an
attempted rape and a dead body hidden in a diner car park, the road
trip takes on an unsettling desperation that you sense just can't end
well. An iconic ‘90s movie about women holding their own in a man's
world. Best moment: when the ladies teach a sexist
trucker a lesson in manners. (We can't show you this particular scene
coz of its "colourful language", so here's the trailer instead).
3. Steel Magnolias (1989)
A group of small-town women in America's Deep South chat about life,
love and track lighting in Truvy's beauty salon. But the light-hearted
mood changes with the tragic death of one of their own. An ensemble of
some of the most respected actresses of the ‘80s including Sally
Field, Shirley Maclaine and Dolly Parton. Warning: have the tissues
ready. Best moment: Sally Field's cemetery outburst.
2. The Hours (2002)
Director Stephen Daldry's cinematic masterpiece, based on the novel
of the same name by Michael Cunningham. Three different women in three
different timelines and locations are linked by Virginia Woolf's novel
Mrs Dalloway. Wonderfully raw and honest performances by
Meryl Streep, Julianne Moore and Nicole Kidman in her Oscar-winning
role as the mentally-tortured Woolf. Phillip Glass' haunting score is
so evocative it's almost another character. Best
moment: Too numerous to mention, so here's the trailer.
1. All About Eve (1950)
An oldie and a goodie. An ageing Broadway actress, Margo Channing
(Bette Davis), takes in a young starry-eyed fan, Eve Harrington (Anne
Baxter), little knowing that Eve has her not-so-innocent eye on
Margo's career and boyfriend.
Filmed in glorious black and white, All About Eve is a
cracker of a ride with superb performances from its two female leads
(plus a mesmerising cameo by a very young and unknown Marilyn Monroe).
It also contains some of the most sparkling film dialogue ever
("Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy
night") and still holds the record for the most Oscar
nominations (14) which it now shares with Titanic.
Best moment: Margo sarcastically welcoming party guests.