HomePosts Tagged "Glenn Close"

Glenn Close Tag

“The truth be told, a villian’s the best way to go. Playing a bad guy…it’s better lines, it’s more colorful, audiences vicariously love you because a lot of times everything they want to do in real life but they can’t do, which you can do in the movies. Contrarily, women…it’s taken them so much longer to be comfortable in playing the villains. When I look back to when I was producing [One Flew Over the] Cuckoo’s Nest, and all the actresses that turned down the part of Nurse Ratched because they didn’t want to play a villain…Louise Fletcher gets an Oscar for playing it well.”— Michael Douglas, discussing villainous roles on Alec Baldwin’s podcast, Here’s the Thing.

As I was putting together this list, I thought a lot about Hollywood’s definition of “villain,” particularly in the context of female villains. For example, Hollywood tends to like its female villains in the form of witches, evil queens and wicked stepmothers whose dastardly deeds are often motivated by vanity and jealousy. Other female villains are evil because of men — men who wrong them, who try to leave them, who cheat on them, who won’t date them. And if you are a woman who is with the man desired by a female villain, you better watch out. Sometimes, female villains — often those in horror films — are just plain batshit crazy (although a man often has something to do with this as well). Then there are the female villains who are hungry for power, money, and fame, motivations typically attributed to male villains (personally, I prefer this type of female villain).

I also found that, particularly in modern films, Hollywood seems to feel the need to make female villains more complex than male villains. If she isn’t an evil queen or a wicked stepmother, much importance is placed on the backstory of a female villain. For example, you might have a film in which a young woman seduces and kills older men, and when she’s finally caught, it is revealed that she was raped by her father as a teen and that traumatic event caused her to go crazy and murder men who reminded her of her father. I find it fascinating that there is more of a need to explain away the actions of a female villain that that of a male villain, to make the audience feel sorry for her rather than loathe her. Why do we have such a hard time accepting that a woman can be horrible for no reason other than she just is  horrible?

After researching this piece, I don’t know if I necessarily agree with Mr. Douglas’s take on women playing villains — there are a lot of great female villains in film and, even though they may have been reluctant to play villains at first, all of these actresses seem pretty comfortable in their roles. I had a difficult time narrowing my list of favorites down to a manageable number because there are so many wonderful female villains. I’m sure I’ve left off some loathsome ladies you love, so let me know who they are in the comments!

Warning: some of the clips below are spoiler-y, so watch at your own risk.

If you are a woman, the relationship you have with your best girlfriends is special. It’s different than any you have with your parents, siblings, romantic partners or even other friends. Your best girlfriend almost always knows you better than anyone else. You trust her with your secrets and you know that she is someone you can turn to no matter what. She’s someone who will listen to your problems and be honest with you, even it if it hurts.

A best girlfriend will be there to console you when you get dumped at 1 A.M. by that asshole you’ve been sleeping with who’s been stringing you along for months. And even though she insisted you could do better and you should stop seeing him a long time ago, but you didn’t listen to her, she’ll take you to an all-night diner and buy you pancakes and coffee and let you cry and bitch and moan without judging you or telling you she told you so.

A true best friend will go shopping with you and tell you when a dress you’ve chosen is totally fug and will help you pick out clothes that hide your fat rolls and make your boobs and ass look amazing. She will talk you out of buying those boots you love that cost almost as much as your rent because she knows you can’t afford them and she doesn’t want you selling any of your other possessions to make ends meet — or asking her for money that she doesn’t have but wouldn’t refuse you.

A BFF will gladly judge horrible skanks that your ex is now sleeping with, but will stop you from making an ass out of yourself when you drunkenly decide to approach the bitch and tell her what you think of her. She won’t judge you when you show up to brunch with greasy bangs and mascara smudged under your eyes, wearing the same clothes you had on the night before.

She will talk to you on the phone for hours about nothing in particular, but won’t be offended if you don’t call her for two weeks. She will organize your wedding and/or baby shower, even if she hates weddings and babies. She will throw you a surprise party when you think everyone has forgotten your birthday. And if something unfortunate happens, like a death in the family or a bout of depression, she will be there with a fresh box of tissues, your favorite ice cream and many, many hugs.

She will tell you when you’re being a bitch and will expect you to do the same for her. And she will always remind you that, no matter what happens,  you’re awesome and fuck anyone who doesn’t think so.

Wow. That all sounded like one of those awful “In honor of women” forwards your crazy aunt who barely knows how to use her Hotmail account sends you every other week, doesn’t it? Well, whatever. I love my friends and I’m lucky to have such fierce ladies in my life.

Inspired by a recent viewing of one of my favorite films, Walking and Talking, and the success of the hit female buddy comedy Bridesmaids (which I still haven’t seen because I’m terrible), I thought I’d revisit some of my favorite female BFFs in film. Whether they’re laughing, crying, talking about sex or plotting murder, these ladies all share a strong bond that (for the most part) can’t be broken. And that’s why I love them.

My list was originally a lot longer than this, but then I noticed that several of the ladies I had listed were BFFs who happened to also be co-workers, so I decided they’d become their own Filminism post later on.

Who are your favorite female friendships in film? Tell me in the comments!

Warning: some of the clips below might be a little spoilery.