Friday, April 27, 2007

The FIVE Best Women(Womyn?)-Centric Movies EVER!

Alright ladies and gentleman (Chimmy), GSR is back at the controls here at The Five. That means you can sit back, relax, and get ready for your weekly dose of estrogen thanks to this week's topic: The FIVE Best Women-Centric Movies EVER!

Before I kick things off, allow me to offer the criteria that is being applied. The movies that we will be listing are movies that have to (1) appeal to a majority of women that we know (we would never be so bold as to speak for all women), (2) have characters/themes that were purposely marketed with women in mind, and (3) they have to be movies that could be enjoyed by men who are watching with their mothers, girlfriends, or sensitive-clarinetplaying-metrosexual-blogger friends.

Make sense? Great - cause I have a great first pick.

1) The Little Mermaid

That's right. I said it. The. Little. Mermaid. Yes it is a cartoon, but we never said that cartoons don't count. Especially one as woman-centric as this one.

This is a movie about a mermaid named Ariel, who just so happens to be a princess among regular mermaids. Life appears to be good under the sea, but deep down this strong independent minded redhead wants to break free of her pedantic days of swimming, singing, and collecting items from the world above. To highlight her boredom with her collecting, Ariel at one point informs the audience that she has collected over 20 dinglehoppers, and she follows this declaration with the existentialist question, "But who cares?" [Wife and MG! - please stop your singing here. You are scaring the people in the coffee shop].

To make a long story short, the plot of this movie boils down to a young girl who needs to follow her heart and search for true love, even if (especially if) it involves rebelling against her father and breaking some rules. And of course the movie has a happy ending. Growing up my younger sister loved this movie, and I have still yet to meet a woman who didn't like it. It has turned into a classic, and it will forever be around to help young women understand that sometimes you have stand up to your father, follow your heart, and wear sea-shell-crafted bras.


Everything in the last two paragraphs never happened. Ever.

My nomination is:

2) Gladiator

Oddly enough, this movie almost made in the list last week for one of the best man-centric movies ever. Stay with me on this one.

First off there is Russell Crowe. Obviously, the female demographic was in mind during casting call. It's not that I don't like Russell, in fact I think he is an amazing actor and I would drink beer with him given the chance. However, when I am locked in lipped passion with a lover, my mind does not form Russell Crowe out of my carnal antagonist, and I have on good faith that every woman I know in fact does just that. All those sweet nothings girls whisper to me, all the little hugs and pats that octogenarian women give their wrinkled and pickled men, they are all for Russell. Given the fact that men are in the minority of the planet (49.7%), if Russell ever created and ran for the office of High Chancellor of All Terrestrial Being, he would be elected. Probably be a margin of 50.3%.

And the reason Gladiator is one of the best woman-centric movies ever, is that if he were elected, I don't think I would have a problem with that. If we were invaded by aliens, I would not worry. Did you see Gladiator? He would kick their ass.

And so, I move that all matters uteran are intimately embroiled in the existence and teddy-bear looks of The Crowe. Refute me if you can.

-I think you are missing the point of our Women-centric post. This is not a post about "male actors who it is okay to man-crush on," which is obviously what you are doing with your "teddy-bear looks" Crowe. This is about finding those movies that help women embrace their inner goddess (or princess....or princess/mermaid). Let me reorient this list back to the topic:

3) An Affair To Remember

I have no trouble admitting the following two facts: (1) When my wife told me we were going to watch this movie I sulked like a petulant child, and (2) By the end of the movie I was completely absorbed in the characters and story. This is a great movie.

It makes this list because it is another movie that most women that I have met seem to agree on. It has a love story, Cary Grant, and some really great acting/dialog. In fact, there is a scene in Sleepless in Seattle where a group of women talk about this movie and start tearing up just at the thought of the ending. My wife and my mother-in-law do the exact same thing.

This movie earns classic status because for those who have seen it and enjoyed it, they think about it every time they see the Empire State Building or a glass of Pink Champagne. If you have not seen it, I highly recommend it. If you saw it and you didn't like it, I want to hear about it in comments. Especially if you are a woman.

-Ok, this movie is fine. The plot isn't great, the acting is so-so, but at least it doesn't involve a piscine prostitot. And don't even pretend you are not a pervert for liking that show. Perfectly fitting clam shell bra my ass, Chester. The movie in question here, though lacking explosions or helicopter is more or less fine. I can watch it, though not too many times and not after a hard day at work. At least I don't feel gay after this nomination. I knew there was a reason I stayed away from woodwindies. Orc-dorks por vida!

I nominate:

4) Sleepless in Seattle/You've Got Mail

I have to admit to not really being able to tell these two apart. One involves a rich software guy who lives on a boat(?), one involves a rich bookstore guy who lives in a boat(?). I don't know what exactly goes on in the two movies, but I can remember some decently funny parts. I like Tom Hanks, so he can add a shot of comedic value to whatever weepy slush-fest they cast him in. These movies also have Meg Ryan, and I could stare at her all day because she's just so darn cute. I don't even care that she doesn't get naked. She is adorable and I want to give her a hug. I also like the nerdy aspect of Tom Hanks' characters in these two movies. it makes me think I may have a chance with curly headed women, though crushing reality should set in soon enough.

One downfall of one of the movies is the inclusion of children. I like kids, hell, I probably have some, but kids on screen annoy the shit out of me. They never seem to add a damn thing to a movie save make those prone to sympathy tear up when the little shits start fake-crying. These are the same people who keep asking children how life makes them feel. They are kids, life doesn't occur to them. I would prefer from here on out if they cgi'd kids into production. I would watch more chick flicks if Calvin was the snotty little shit who gets the reluctant, but flirting, parents back together, if for no other reason than the movie might have a T-Rex. Calvin with the stuffed tiger, not Calvin the reformationist exegist, just to clear that up.

-Casey, you have made a fine selection here. I actually debated using one or both of these movies when I was making my contributions. As for your comments on The Little Mermaid, I never used the adjectives "perfectly fitting" in relationship when describing the sea-shell bra. Those are your words, and I find them very revealing (but not as revealing as the outfit they dressed Princess Jasmine in for Aladdin....)

-Absolutely. If she were not animated with possibly irritating paints and inks, she'd be on my list of five thing to do before I die. And, honestly, I didn't really read The Little Mermaid shit. I figured at some point you'd mention the movie's only redeeming quality.

We'll leave five up to you guys again, though icthyan porn will get your ass booted, but for the record I nominate Predator.


Megarita said...

Hmmmm . . . the chick flick genre is a difficult one. I tend to balk at most of these because I hate being blatantly marketed to. Also, Meg Ryan was dead to me after Harry Met Sally . . .

Damn, I'm sitting here trying to think of decent flicks but am drawing a blank. I might not actually be a woman. But if enjoying Little Mermaid is the criteria, perhaps that ain't so bad.

Casey said...

Well, if enjoying The Little Mermaid makes you a woman, you might inform GSR. And his wife.

Airam said...

"Look at this stuff! Isn't it neat! Wouldn't you think my collections complete! Wouldn't you think I'm a girl ... a girl who has ... everything?" I loved that movie ... I remember my friends and I singing it as we would take walks. Dweebs that we were. But I could so relate (and still can) to our animated sea-princess. And I've got the sea-shell bras to prove it.

Ok GSR ... I can't believe that you didn't put Dirty Dancing in there!!!! You realize that you just put Baby in the corner!!! Shame on you!!!

Girl on the Verge said...

I'm going to sound like an extreme feminist (which I don't consider myself to be - extreme that is) but I have to disagree with The Little Mermaid. In the end the mermaid GIVES UP HER VOICE TO BE WITH A MAN. Unless I saw a different version of the movie that is how I recall the ending. My top five choices for Women Centric movies would be.
1. Thelma and Louise
2. Bull Durham
3. The Wedding Singer
4. Charlie's Angels
5. Garden State

heather said...

this ~is~ a hard one, the one that i had to fight to get j to watch was to wong foo, thanks for everything. i know it's not for everyone but i liked it and once j got over wesley snipes wearing a dress (and working it to boot!) he enjoyed the movie. now getting him to admit it to any one is a different matter.

Jill said...

I have to agree with Girl on the Verge. Thelma and Louise is a pretty bad-ass chick-flick.

As for chick-flicks on my all time faves list, I have to go with Grease (I know every single line of dialogue) and Amelie (any man that doesn't find her endearing or wouldn't find what she does for that male character flattering and worthy of love is NOT a man I want to know).

Lord Chimmy said...

Hmmm, I would nominate The Joy Luck Club. I have never seen this movie myself, but I do recollect my mom watching it. I know it is about mothers and daughters, and if that is not women-centric then I just don't know what is...

Grad School Reject said...

Airam - "The sea shell bras to prove it"? Whole new side of you my friend, a whole new side. While on the subject of song, MG! and my wife sing "Part of Your World" in perfect harmony. If you ever visit you can make be a trio :)

Girl on the Verge: So wait...that isn't a positive lesson for young women? :) I am (obviously?) kidding, and my wife actually said the same thing....before breaking into song.

heather - I believe you are talking about "Too Wong Fu - Thanks for Everything Julie Newmar." I beg you not to ask how I know that.

Jill - Yeah, I think Thelma and Louise should be the fifth movie. I forgot about that one.

Chimmy - I've never seen/read The Joy Luck Club either, but I have the same impression as you.

You can call me, 'Sir' said...


Actually, just about anything with Tom Hanks would probably work, but in Big he's not only Tom Hanks, he's also little-kid Tom Hanks. That's a lethal combination with the women. I hear.

Also, I think 'Shaun of the Dead' would count, too. It's got a boy's love for his mother, his attempt to win back his girlfriend, and a lot of zombie death. But not too much zombie death. I think it has enough of a balance of zombie death and sensitive plot to keep women interested and entertained.

Casey said...

Thelma And Louise should have been in there, as it is both a chick-flick and good.

As far as Shaun of the Dead, I like your thinking, but while it is tolerable or even enjoyable to any woman I want to spend time with, I'm not sure how it centers around women.

Besides that, Dirty Dancing is making a decent run in my mind as one of the five.

You can call me, 'Sir' said...


Consider that the core of Shaun's decision to venture out into the zombie-filled landscape of subrban London is to rescue his mother and his ex-girlfriend. In this way, the movie is sort of woman-centric in that a guy is willing to risk becoming a zombie snack in order to save the women in his life.

God, if I had a nickel for everytime a woman has nearly lured me to an untimely death at the hands/teeth of zombies...

Casey said...

No shit, there should be a support group for that. Then the nagging during the escape

Gnash, gnash, drool. Did you remember to put the clothes in the dryer? Gnash, limp, drool. Did you ever call your mother back? Hack, gnash, drool. Are you ever going to clean out the basement? And so on.

heather said...

opps, those o's get me every time. lol the first movie i thought of was thelma and louise but i wasn't sure if it met the criteria of being a movie that could be enjoyed by men too.

Jill said...

Oh yes! Dirty Dancing!

By the way Casey, your profile answers are hysterical. Of course, I'm also the girl who wrote "I don't like music that just plain sucks" or something like that on my profile, so I may not be the most unbiased judge.

Anonymous said...

Gladiator. What a classic..
"At my signal, unleash hell" etc...

Your arguments for the film being womancentric are great, but for me it will always be a primal screaming swashbuckling bloke film.

Great post.

Grad School Reject said...

Sir - Love your thinking on "Shaun." I actually heard two women in a dive bar debating the merits of "Shaun" as a Zombie movie back when it was first released. It was thing of beauty.

Casey - I didn't know you knew my ex-girlfriend? How is she?

Heather - Your # of "o"s could be correct. I was drunk when I responded. I was looking to emphasize the "Thanks for everything Julie Newmar." Good times.

Jill - I should have said Dirty Dancing. Per usual, Airam is correct. And she knows it is one of my all time favorites - I once smoked her with some Dirty Dancing trivia.

Winters - Gladiator will always be a man's movie for me. I'm don't care for Crowe at all as a celebrity personality, but when he gets into a character there are few that are better.

Casey said...

Thank you, Jill. You might be cool enough guest rate now.

mysterygirl! said...

I place another vote for Dirty Dancing-- good call, Airam!

What, you don't like my singing? Just hand me a spoon (not a slotted one, biotch) and bring it! :)

Darren said...

How about Steel Magnolias? I weep just thinking about it. Don't you judge me.