52 Films by Women #1 – Tomboy

Hullo you.

I am settled in, back at the shack, and am finally embarking on my mission to watch 52 films written and/or directed by women this year.

I took the pledge over at Women In Film http://womeninfilm.org/52-films/

Hop on over to their site if you’re interested in taking up the challenge.  They have some great lists to get you started.

I plan to post a few thoughts on each film—mini reviews, I suppose.  I know if I aim for full on reviews of each movie, I will fret too much over the writing of them.  Mostly I just want to track my viewing and offer up these films for your consideration.

I’m starting out with films I’ve found on Netflix.  I’ll make a note with each film on where I found it.

I’ll also include links to the film on IMDB and a full review written by someone else for those who want to explore more.

So… to begin…


Tomboy (2011) Written and Directed by Céline Sciamma

Found on Netflix

Lovely. Lovely. Lovely.

The story of a young girl exploring life as a boy for a summer.

Beautifully shot and delicately told with AMAZING performances by the kids, especially Zoe Heran as Laure/Mikael, Jeanne Disson as Lisa and my absolute favourite— Malonn Levana as Jeanne.  Brilliant.

A beautiful review and summary of the film by Roger Ebert at http://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/tomboy-2012

An interview with the filmmaker at http://www.filmindependent.org/news-and-blog/filmmaker-interview/#.VtcUbMdln6Y

The urge to write more is strong upon me… but needs must return to my work.

Drop a comment if you watch the film – or take up the challenge.  Be great to hear from you.

Go easy~p

PS: Any suggestions of movies to watch much appreciated. Especially Canadian Films if I can get my hands (or eyes) on them somehow.

I’m starting out watching on Netflix. Bit broke these days. But am entirely willing to support our filmmakers with DOUGH as well. Or swap them a copy of my novel for a copy of their film (wink).


2 Comments on “52 Films by Women #1 – Tomboy

  1. Wow! this should be fun. Really got me thinking about some of my favs by women directors and about some that I’ve been meaning to see 😉

    Here are some that are either favs of mine or not on any of the lists on the website you reference above:

    Early Gillian Armstrong (Australian) are wonderful. “My Brilliant Career” and “High Tide” have Judy Davis. “Oscar and Lucinda” star Ralph Fiennes and Cate Blanchett. A couple of Hollywood films are nice: “Little Women” with Susan Sarandon and “Mrs. Soffel” with Diane Keaton, Matthew Modine & Mel Gibson.

    Canadian Patricia Rozema wrote and directed the 1999 version of “Mansfield Park”, which is really a mashup of Jane Austen’s letters and the novel.

    Also Egyptian Canadian Rubba Nadda’s “Cairo Time” is lovely. I read or saw somewhere that she wanted to create a movie that her parents would enjoy. Stars Patricia Clarkson and Alexander Siddiq. It’s wonderful to experience the slow awakening of the feelings that these two develop for each other. I haven’t yet watched two of her movies on Netflix (though they are in my list): “Sabbah” and “October Gale”.

    Jane Campion is also a favourite of mine. I loved “Bright Star”, which is about John Keats romance with Fanny Brawne. It’s subtle, touching and make sure you have tissues for the ending. I also like “The Piano” with Holly Hunter, Harvey Keitel and Anna Paquin, and “Portrait of a Lady” with Nicole Kidman and John Malkovich.

    I haven’t yet seen all of Sofia Coppola’s films, but loved “Lost in Translation”, was horrified by the self interest of the characters in “The Bling Ring” and appreciated the father in “Somewhere”.

    Two of Gurinder Chadha’s films are just plain fun. “Bend it Like Beckham” examines the struggle of a Indian Briton girl wanting to be part of sport more than wanting to marry. And “Bride and Prejudice” is a Bollywood send-up of Jane Austen’s novel.

    Anne Fontaine has directed a couple of adapted literary pieces that I really liked. “Gemma Bovary” is a French/English-language film starring Gemma Arterton and Fabrice Luchini that brings Madame Bovary into the modern day, while “Adore” with Robin Wright and Naomi Watts adapts Doris Lessing’s short story “The Grandmothers” to modern-day Australia. This one focuses on taboo relationships… or are they?

    Some others I have enjoyed are “Sunshine Cleaning” by Christine Jeffs with Amy Adams & Emily Blunt, Lone Scherfig’s “An Education” with Carrie Mulligan and Peter Sarsgaard and also “One Day” with Anne Hathaway was okay.

    Sam Taylor-Johnson’s “Nowhere Boy” about John Lennon’s late teens is really good. While you may have seen Valerie Faris’s ‘Little Miss Sunshine”, which I loved, but have you seen her “Ruby Sparks”? It’s about a writer who creates a female protagonist with whom he begins a romance.

    “Winter’s Bone” by Debra Granik was the first time I saw Jennifer Lawrence in anything. She is fearless as both the character and the actor.

    And don’t forget about Sarah Polley. “Stories We Tell” is compelling and a bit heart-wrenching as she creates this documentary about her genetic parentage. “Take this Waltz” was also interesting in how the female protagonist tries to solve a problem in her life by making a change. But did it change? I haven’t yet seen “Away From Her” since the subject matter is a little too close to home for me. I’ve heard it is very good, though.

    “Waitress” by Adrienne Shelley (writer, director & actor) tackles how to make your life better when you’re poor and married to an abuser. The original characters and plot are engaging and enjoyable. I was so sad when I heard of Shelley’s murder. I think she would have told other engaging and thought-provoking stories.

    And lastly, I saw that Leni Riefenstahl’s “Triumph of the Will” was on a couple of lists. I watched this one in my documentary film class many moons ago. It’s quite interesting to watch how this propaganda film manipulates the viewer (or at least tries) in thinking Hitler’s ideas are good.

    Oh, and I almost forgot, try to see Laura Poitras’s “Citizenfour”. You’ll probably be looking over your shoulder and being less open about sharing stuff on line after seeing this documentary about Edward Snowden.

    Anyway… hope this list helps you out with your goal. If you see any of these, I look forward to your thought on them.

    Have fun 🙂


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Because there's never enough time to do it right the first time but there's always enough time to do it over

Ailish Sinclair

Stories and photos from Scotland

Cathy Standiford

Historical fiction, poetry, essays

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