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09 March 2010 @ 10:29 pm
"we deserve better villains."  
Over New Year's my friends and I were having a conversation about movies that feature female friendships where one of the friends is not dying. (Well, and about friendship in media more generally. I love friendships, I love watching people be friends, and I don't get nearly as much of it as I'd like. It's one of the things I love about As You Like It, and easily my favorite thing about Studio 60.)

Anyway, I think we can add Whip It to that list. Though one of the things I like about it, actually (I watched it late last night), is that it's not overtly rah-rah-rah about Women or The Sisterhood or any of that. They're subjects that deeply inform the film, but nobody feels like they have to pontificate about that. There's a point at which Bliss (Ellen Page), having gone to the roller derby, says to Maggie Mayhem (Kristen Wiig), something like, "I just want you to know--you all are my new heroes." And Maggie says, "So put on some skates and join us. Be your own hero." What I love is that she tosses it off like it's nothing, like it's obvious. Because it ought to be. And the women are just women being friends, and teammates, and occasionally enemies, without anyone's ever acting like something extraordinary is going on, that someone is telling a story where men are on the edges. They're not The Enemy; they're just not the focus. And the movie's just casual about that.

Also, my longstanding Drew Barrymore girl-crush remains totally intact. (Ha, that reminds me. I had brunch with a friend a week or two ago, and for reasons I can no longer remember, he mentioned Ever After. [Maybe we were talking about costume drama?] I must have made some kind of scrunchy, trying-not-to-giggle face, which he misinterpreted, and then he said, "Oh, admit it; you've seen it." Lord, how many times have I seen it, is the real question. So of course I proceeded to quote from the film. What else was there to do?)
Magistrix Texan: Derby Gladiatorerstwhiletexan on March 10th, 2010 05:13 am (UTC)
I totally loved Whip It, and I know what you mean about the "Be your own hero" line.
tempestsarekind: keep calm and rock ontempestsarekind on March 10th, 2010 04:53 pm (UTC)
I just love the "well, duh" attitude of it.

the love song of j. aimee prufrocke: btvs | when your heart feels undonefaeriemaiden on March 15th, 2010 03:42 pm (UTC)
I've probably mentioned a billion times that one of the many reasons I love War for the Oaks so much is Eddi and Carla's friendship, and also the way the whole group is interconnected (the Best Friend and the Love Interest share a camaraderie!), but yes. That's lovely! And that line is so beautiful. Definitely adding this film to my watch list.
tempestsarekind: austen bonnetstempestsarekind on March 16th, 2010 03:03 pm (UTC)
I definitely enjoyed it! Lack of contrived "girls can't get along with each other" rivalry for the absolute win.