Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Bong Joon-Ho; when we envision our favorite filmmakers, how often do we consider female filmmakers? Try even naming one off of the top of your head. The voice and representation of women is too frequently overlooked amongst the film community. In honor of Women’s History Month, we are devoted to recognizing and celebrating the outstanding movies created by women, that only require our time and open-mind. On a weekend of self-care, take a moment to watch one (or all) of these films and honor the women that daringly challenge this historic boys’ club.
Here are 5 stellar films directed by female filmmakers:
1. Olivia Wilde's Booksmart (2019)
Directed by Olivia Wilde, this contemporary coming-of-age film is as refreshing as it is hilarious. We follow Amy and Molly, best friends and go-getters, as they navigate their senior year of high school. While they spent the duration of their high school years dedicated to academic excellence, the approach of graduation sends the girls into a frenzy to experience one final night of fun before separating into their adult lives. Basically a female-led Superbad.
2. Rebecca Hall's Passing (2021)
For fans of black-and-white film, Passing is a heart-wrenching and heavy-hitting film directed by Rebecca Hall. Inspired by the experiences of her own relatives, Hall depicts the reunion of two mixed-race women and childhood friends, Irene and Claire. Set in the 1920s, Irene identifies as a Black woman, while Claire has chosen to “pass” as white and marry a privileged, wealthy white man unaware of her secret identity. Bring tissues, you’ve been warned.
3. Lulu Wang's The Farewell (2019)
Also based on a true story of the director Lulu Wang’s real life, The Farewell is a heartfelt and sincere depiction of family. Billi, a Chinese-American woman, returns to China to attend a sham wedding designed to reunite her family as they cherish their last moments with their Nai Nai, the only person unaware of her few weeks left to live. A story of humanity, humor, and heart.
4. Greta Gerwig's Little Women (2019)