Ah, the critic who cried woman…Anytime there’s discourse about female directors in film, there’s the frustratingly inevitable bombardment of outcry about the gross discrepancy between the number of male-directed films and those of their female counterparts. Studies are conducted by reputable institutions, statistics are brandished like badges of injustice, and the hearth of discontent is tended with frenzied diligence. Directors are pitted against one another based on their gender differences rather than on the merits of their creative output. Sadly, the craftsmanship of the actual film becomes secondary to the usually irrelevant issue of gender–an unfortunate disservice to the craftsman or woman.
While this “debate” will likely continue for some time, luckily, film lovers will continue enjoying the fruits of these creative minds till kingdom come, regardless of who wears the pants. Rather than incessantly moaning and groaning about how film is a male-dominated industry (it’s not the only one), let us celebrate women’s contributions to cinema. Here’s a look at some female-directed films of 2013:
The Bling Ring
Director: Sofia Coppola
Writer: Sofia Coppola
Starring: Emma Watson, Katie Chang, Israel Broussard, Leslie Mann
Release: June 21
Synopsis: Inspired by actual events, a group of fame-obsessed teenagers use the internet to track celebrities’ whereabouts in order to rob their homes.
First with Somewhere (2010) and now her latest with The Bling Ring, it’s safe to say Sofia Coppola seems to have a fascination with the aimless, superficial lifestyle of glamor usually associated with L.A. In both cases, the films don’t quite hit the mark like her earlier, more admirable efforts, The Virgin Suicides (1999) and Lost in Translation (2003), but that doesn’t stop them from featuring at big international film festivals. Although her latest film wasn’t in contention for the Palme d’Or this year, The Bling Ring did screen at Cannes to mixed reception. No foreseeable Oscar “bling” for Coppola this time around either so let’s hope she tries something different next time.
Director: Kimberly Peirce
Writers: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (screenplay), Stephen King (novel)
Starring: Chloë Grace Moretz, Julianne Moore, Judy Greer
Synopsis: A sheltered high school girl unleashes her newly developed telekinetic powers after she is pushed too far by her peers.
Release: October 18
Brian De Palma’s Stephen King-based horror classic from 1976 receives a modern revamping at the hands of Boys Don’t Cry Director (1999), Kimberly Peirce. Rising young star Chloë Grace Moretz, who was eerily captivating in 2010’s vampire horror picture Let Me In, takes on the titular role with the task of living up to Sissy Spacek’s original Oscar-nominated performance. Early posters and trailers for the chiller promise another worthy adaptation of the acclaimed King novel. Perfectly timed for the Halloween holiday, Peirce and crew will make sure “you will know her name.”