Who was overlooked in the '100 Greatest Movie Characters' list?
Yahoo is reporting that their movie experts are disagreeing with the top 25 movie characters of all time, from a list of the 100 greatest movie characters of all time. And while they're upset that characters such as Willie Wonka and Mr. Miyagi weren't included in the top 25, I'm personally curious as to why there's only ONE woman on this ill-fated top 25 list. (There are four on Yahoo's edited list -- wait, three and one honorable mention.)
Why is this? Is it because there aren't really that many notable female characters in movies? Maybe. But what about Bethany from Kevin Smith's Dogma? She was not only a multi-dimensional LEAD character, but she was funny, not impossibly skinny or beautiful (although the actress who plays her is beautiful), nor was she all of 20 years old.
We face this question a lot, and it turns out that there really aren't that many female characters in movies. Those that are present tend to follow along a formula that is dependent on the male lead -- either the love interest, the enemy, the mom, whatever -- and tend to be kind of shallow, one-dimensional figures -- think Neo's girlfriend in the Matrix trilogy; you don't even know her name, do you? (I sure as shit don't.)
So, what the fuck, Hollywood? Women watch movies too -- and not all of us are excited for the next Sex and the City movie. Some of us actually vomited on our friends or spouses when we saw there was a second Bridget Jones movie. Not only do women deserve to be acknowledged by the Movie Industrial Complex, but we deserve to have characters we can relate to. Maybe the gals from Sex and the City are really super great, but the characters in that show/movie represent the only type of female character in movies. Period. The slut. The purity slut. The bitchy one. And Carrie.
Women come in more flavors than upper-middle-class, fashion-and-sex-obsessed, skinny white women! DUH! It should be portrayed that way in movies as well. For god's sake, some of us aren't even skinny!
Then again, Hollywood has always been behind the times in terms of diversity. Blackface? Mexicans and Asians playing "Indians"? Indians playing Iraqis (sorry, I know, I love Naveen Andrews too)? Mainstream films essentially ignoring that there are other ethnicities than "white"; other sexualities than straight; other relationship statuses than married? Woody Allen movies?
This has got to stop. We need more diversity in so-called liberal Hollywood. Actors may be women, gay, non-white, intelligent people who read, but they certainly aren't allowed to act like it. And it's pretty frakking annoying.
(Title from Natalia's list.)