70 – Thank Heaven For Little Girls (but Don’t Thank These Movies)

You’re minding your own business, watching classic movies, movies that won Best Picture at the Oscars, and then you stop, and think…does this film glamourise child prostitution?!

Nick and Contrarah take a look at three classic films from yesteryear examining them through a 2021 lens. They are well-made and were financially and critically successful, but the plots and focus on social convention displayed are WILD! 

Get to know Gigi, Fanny, Iris and Betsy with us.

Have thoughts? 

Email us @ beyondbech@gmail.com

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69 – A Quiet Place 2 Explained

We are back in the cinema with a big, bold action movie that celebrates sound and champions hearing loss – A Quiet Place: Part 2. 

Join Contrarah for an episode about what the film represents, if it’s any good and how Millicent Simmonds is its runaway star. This episode contains SPOILERS in certain places, so please consult the running order below if you don’t want to be spoiled.

00:00 – 01:25.  Intro

01:25 – 11.46.   Spoiler free recap and review

11:47 – 25:25.   Full plot summary BURSTING WITH SPOILERS – listen at your peril!

25:25 – 34.36.   Millicent Simmonds discussion, celebrating hearing-impaired actresses.

Impaired NEVER means lesser!  

68 – Lillian & Julia Vs Mary & Muriel

This episode delves into Hollywood history and the fascinating back story surrounding the 1977 Oscar-winning movie Julia. Based on the memoirs of playwright Lillian Hellman and starring Jane Fonda and Vanessa Redgrave, Julia is a strange and thrilling story about Hellman’s real life brush with espionage and German fascism…or is it? 

After the film was released and won 3 Oscars (including for Adapted Screenplay) it was suggested by Hellman’s rival Mary McCarthy that Hellman may have inserted herself into the narrative, and the ‘facts’ may actually be a fiction, or worse, taken from someone’s else life story. And the story is all set around WW2! 

Contrarah and Nick look at the moral implications of fabricating film plots, the role of male screenwriters in writing believable female friendships and the ‘she said, she said’ nature of professional female rivalry.

Truth is stranger than fiction, but what exactly is the truth?!

67 – How Ella Greenwood Became an Award-winning Filmmaker by Shining a Light on Teen Mental Health

Filmmaker Ella Greenwood packed in a lot in the last couple of years. She made an award-winning short film about her struggles with teenage mental health issues (Faulty Roots), she made an animated film to bring those discussion topics to a younger audience (Dreary Days), she started working on her next film Self Charm with the award-winning Bukky Bakray and she was announced as one of the Forbes’ 30 under 30 (at age 19).

Ella takes Contrarah through this story, her work with Broken Flames – her company helping to shine a light on teen mental health issues and all the people that helped Ella bring her stories to life. A comedy and horror lover, Ella also waxes lyrical on her love of TV and how female filmmakers are always so much more qualified than they think they are.

Click the links for more:

Faulty Roots 

Dreary Days

Read more about all of Ella’s work here 

Special thanks to Latoya.

66 – Were the most popular movies of 2020 actually bad?

Ah 2020, a great year for health, positivity, movies…. in the immortal words of Thor, is it, though? 

Contrarah researched what movies we went to see at the cinema and on streaming services, and some interesting trends emerged. 

Did we choose movies to watch because they were the best?

Or because they were the best available?

Or because they were simply, available

Let us know what films you most loved from last year by mailing us at beyondbech@gmail.com, tweeting @Beyond_Bechdel or on beyondbechdel.com.