Saturday, July 10, 2021

TMP: Female Athletes

Wandering Through the Shelves hosts Thursday Movie Picks. It's a weekly series where bloggers post and share various movie picks every Thursday. 

The rules are simple: based on the theme of the week pick three to five movies and tell us why you picked them. For further details and the schedule visit the series main page here.

This week's theme is Female Athletes.

Whip It

Bliss Cavendar (Eliot Page) lives in small-town Texas and yearns to break free of her mother's world of beauty pageants and conformity. She secretly joins a roller-derby team behind her parents' back and a conflict between a championship game vs the Bluebonnet beauty pageant threatens to reveal what she's been hiding.

I remember seeing this in theaters when it was first released, and it was such a revelation in terms of the story and young adult movies. It's nice to see it maintain such a nice cult following over the years. I wish Drew Barrymore would've directed more movies.

Battle of the Sexes 

The 1973 tennis match between Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and Bobby Riggs (Steve Carrell) became the most watched televised sports event of all time. With her husband urging her to fight for equal pay, the private King was also struggling to come to terms with her own sexuality, while Riggs gambled his legacy and reputation in a bid to relive the glories of his past.

When I look back on Emma's career so far, she continually grows with every role. Battle of the Sexes was sandwiched between La La Land and The Favorite - both films gained more momentum and recognition. Her performance is good, and yet I can't imagine how much more her growth today could've made it even stronger (and I don't mean that in a bad way.) I was surprised when I watched this how much I liked it and well it adapted Billie Jean's life - even if things had to be cut for time / context.

A League of Their Own

As America's stock of athletic young men is depleted during World War II, a professional all-female baseball league springs up in the Midwest, funded by publicity-hungry candy maker Walter Harvey.

It's difficult to ignore the film when a female sports genre is mentioned. It's a classic with a top notch cast and such a rarity to see WWII-based films with women doing anything other than falling in love with soldiers / Nazis. I don't know how to feel about the series reboot - it depends on the casting and I hope the story focuses more other teams outside of the Rockford Peaches and midwestern women. There's a lot of stories still left to be told, so I hope the series follows through.

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