Why The "Wonder Woman" Film Is So Important

Why The "Wonder Woman" Film Is So Important

"Wonder Woman" really needs to succeed.
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"Wonder Woman" comes out on June 2nd and there’s a reason you haven’t heard that much about it. Warner Brothers isn’t spending money on advertising for the film. That means no billboards, commercials, nothing.

This movie is an important one. It’s directed by Patty Jenkins starring Gal Gadot, making it the first superhero film with a female protagonist and a female director; and one of the first few films to have a woman direct a superhero movie at all. It’s been a tough battle for women to get behind the camera in Hollywood, and there’s no signs of it getting any easier. Fox recently announced their schedule of films for the next two years without a single woman listed as a director.

"Wonder Woman"’s budget for this film was $100m which seems like a big deal – until you compare it to other superhero films with male leads. "Captain America: Civil War" and "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice" had a budget of $250m, and "X-Men: Apocalypse" had a budget of $178m. "Suicide Squad"’s budget was over $250m, before it even went under reshoots. Even in 2013, "Man of Steel" had a budget of $225m. In all reality, "Wonder Woman" is working with one of the lowest budgets of Warner Brothers films, and of any current superhero film. I’m not sure if the budget for "Wonder Woman" represents Warner Brothers lack of confidence in the franchise, or if it’s representative of the film industry’s attitude towards women as a whole. As Ashley Lynch from Film School Rejects stated, "It’s like a superhero wage gap." And with the low budget and lack of advertising for the film it certainly feels like a glass cliff effect – when men put women in the position of power but set them up to fail. So Warner Brothers can say “I told you so”, and continue to argue that superhero movies about women just don’t sell well. Which makes it all the more important that it does do well, to prove them wrong.

There are so many important aspects in the "Wonder Woman" film. For example, Gal Gadot is an Israeli actress who carried out two years of service as an enlisted soldier in the Israel Defense Forces. In the army, she excelled in a grueling three-month boot camp that prepared her to serve as a combat trainer - experience that has helped her in her casted roles. And then after serving in the army she studied law. She herself is a wonderful role model for girls – proof that girls can be strong and brainy and still attractive. She’s a wonder woman herself.

Female superheroes are always criticized for their attire, because they are created more for sexual appeal than actual function. But Lindy Hemmings, Oscar-winning costume designer, worked on adapting the costumes for function, while Jenkins aimed to cast multiple races and sizes for the beautiful Amazon warriors. Hemming explained that their armor is molded leather instead of metal, and Wonder Woman’s suit is made of rubbery material, worn close to the body but still leaving room for function. Gadot also asked that her training armor be adapted for comfort, so Hemming said they lined it with fur to keep it soft and warm.

Not only are the costumes created for function as well as fashion, but "Wonder Woman" will be the first comic book movie that will focus on a woman who is equal to super powered men. Feminism is not intrinsically “vs. men.” It is “vs. a system” that refuses to acknowledge and respect women as equal players, and that can have a lot of different implications. "Wonder Woman" is one of the first steps in challenging that system. Wonder Woman is the woman who can stand toe to toe with Superman, and it’s finally time we give her the time to shine. The scenes featuring Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor demonstrate an equal relationship, neither one being forced to play the “damsel in distress” role. The producers wanted both the character and actor to serve as a role model to youth. In some ways, she can act as a role model to young girls, fictional characters’ act as role models all the time. To young boys, "Wonder Woman" will counter the gender roles that they have been taught within this patriarchal society, and to young girls, they will have a superhero they can relate and look up to.

Last October, to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the DC heroine who has stood for peace, justice, and equality, the United Nations declared October 21st officially Wonder Woman Day and appointed the Amazonian Princess as the Honorary Ambassador for the Empowerment of Women and Girls.

It was a huge step for female empowerment and gender equality. But two months later, Wonder Woman was stripped of her honorary ambassadorship because over forty-thousand people signed a petition protesting her appointment because they felt: "the character's current iteration is that of a large breasted, white woman of impossible proportions, scantily clad in a shimmery, thigh-baring body suit."

This is quite a controversial subject, and "Wonder Woman" has brought up quite a lot of controversy throughout the making of the film (photoshopping her arm pits, partnering with ThinkThin). But arguing that "Wonder Woman" is too large breasted to be a role model is up surd. Women have breasts, in all shapes and sizes. Women can also still be sexy (and have breasts) while also being smart and strong. And to attack Wonder Woman’s “sexy attire” is outrageous when no one has ever criticized how apparent male superhero’s bulges are in their tight costumes. Why are women the only ones subjected to this ridicule?

Yes "Wonder Woman" has its downfalls and isn’t the perfect example of a feminist film, but it does have a lot of power to push the film industry in the right direction, a direction that is long overdue. "Wonder Woman" is predicted to be such a pivotal project in expanding diversity and empowerment, but is only one major example of the many forms of resistance surfacing against these stereotypical gender portrayals within the media. There is a lot of wonderful aspects in the "Wonder Woman" film, and while it does mean positive strides for the grossly underrepresented women who work in this industry, there is still a long way to go.

There’s a lot riding on this first standalone film of a female super-heroine. This is a genre that is in danger of looking sexist, and an industry that is plagued by inequality. The franchise needs a huge box-office hit, and a character to root for.

Yes, "Wonder Woman" really needs to succeed.



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Sources:

https://filmschoolrejects.com/we-need-to-talk-about-that-wonder-woman-budget-ef4b1b70f6d8/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wonder_Woman_(2017_film)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gal_Gadot

http://www.imdb.com/imdbpicks/17-things-wonder-woman/ls063273925?pf_rd_m=A2FGELUUNOQJNL&pf_rd_p=2951165182&pf_rd_r=0PQE67Y4QA2J01CBNYC5&pf_rd_s=center-3&pf_rd_t=15021&pf_rd_i=tt0451279&ref_=tt_ecw_wwoman_cap_pri_1

http://www.cinemablend.com/news/1602040/the-controversial-wonder-woman-news-that-has-shocked-gal-gadot

http://nytlive.nytimes.com/womenintheworld/2017/05/11/wonder-woman-film-faces-backlash-over-controversial-marketing-technique/

Cover Image Credit: Flickr

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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The 2020 Election: The Democratic Party Part 1

We all have the duty of becoming politically conscious in order to wisely act on the crucial decision that lies ahead of us in the very near future. In this unbiased, multi-part series you'll be able to get a brief look into both the 2020 Democratic and Republican presidential candidates.

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The race for the 2020 presidential election is on the rise as 24 Democrats and 2 Republicans have been officially confirmed as potential candidates. Ranging from California to New York, we may recognize "big names" such as Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump, however, it's important to get to know all the candidates in order to have a clear idea as to who you want to be leading the country for the next four years.

*Due to the high number of Democratic candidates, they will all be highlighted over the course of three articles throughout the coming weeks.

1. Joe Biden

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Serving as the Vice President alongside Barack Obama and former senator of Delaware, Joe Biden has already ran for president twice, making the 2020 election his third and what he considers, final time. Biden hopes to strengthen the middle class by raising the minimum wage to a more livable standard. He also hopes to restrict the purchase of guns through background checks as well as being in support of a ban on assault weapons.

2. Bernie Sanders

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Having served on both the House of Representatives and The Senate, Bernie Sanders has caught the attention of many Americans due to his push for universal healthcare with the idea that "All Americans are entitled to go to the doctor when they're sick and not go bankrupt after staying in the hospital." As well as making public secondary-education schools tuition-free in a mission to help lower student debt. Sanders believes in the threat of climate change as his campaign includes the future of passing a Green New Deal to move from fossil fuels to sustainable energy as well as ban fracking and fossil fuel infrastructure. Bernie Sanders additionally believes in abolishing the death penalty, reforming the police system, and ending the discrimination of applicants based on criminal history

3. Beto O'Rourke

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Beto O'Rourke has represented Texas in the House of Representatives from 2013 - 2019. He has a noteworthy platform towards business which includes increasing federal funding towards the Manufacturing Extension Partnership that would aid in creating competitiveness with America's small- and medium-sized manufacturers against global markets. O'Rourke also believes in the idea of increasing voter numbers no matter what the political party may be as well as help ex-convicts regain their right to vote after serving their sentences. In doing so, he plans to create more outreach to the younger generations by ensuring pre-voter registration for all 16 and 17 year olds. Moreover, Beto pushes for a change in creating new term limits for the US House, Senate, and Supreme Court.

4. Kamala Harris

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Kamila is a lawyer and has served as the junior US senator and Attorney General of California. While she is new to the presidential election process, Harris aims to increase teacher pay with the "largest federal investment in teacher pay in U.S. history with a $13,500 raise." Moreover, using her specialization in legal matters regarding sexual assault, Kamila hopes to protect Planned Parenthood as well as women's reproductive rights. Harris states that as President, she will eliminate the wage gap between men and women as well as racial disparities involving maternal health care. Harris additionally hopes in protecting LGBTQ+ rights by not only passing an Equality Act to fight against discrimination in schools, work, and public, but appoint an Attorney General with the purpose of investigating and prosecuting hate crimes against LGBTQ+ individuals.


5. Elizabeth Warren

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Growing up in rural Oklahoma in a low-income home and eventually serving as a US senator for Massachusetts, Elizabeth Warren is described as a progressive candidate who's campaign is working towards "universal childcare, student loan debt relief, and down payments on a Green New Deal and Medicare for All." Warren hopes to build the middle class up and defend unionized jobs by allowing 40% of board members to be elected through employees. Moreover, Warren is in favor of strengthening the military as well has bringing troops home from overseas, as well as banning private prisons and decriminalizing marijuana. She additionally has stated to end Washington corruption by banning lobbying along with preventing Senators and Congressman from trading stocks whilst in office.

6. Cory Booker

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Attending Stanford and later graduating from Yale Law School, Cory Booker became the first African-American U.S. Senator from New Jersey. Booker's main concern is to end gun violence, ban assault weapons, and bring his battle to the attention of the NRA to create "liberty for all." His 14-part plan includes creating a more extensive process to obtain a gun, one of which would including an FBI-issued background check as well as requiring "micro-stamping" on all guns to ensure the ability to trace back the source of ammunition used in crimes. Moreover, Americans seeking a gun license would have to apply for a 5-year license after which would require renewal. Booker has also proposed the idea of providing newborns with savings accounts that would accumulate until they reached 18. He states that this plan would help settle the gap between the classes by offering lower-income households a nest-egg averaging at about $46,000. He also aims to make contraceptives employer-covered and repeal the punishment for an abortion outside of incest, rape, or for the woman's health.

7. Kirsten Gillibrand

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From New York, Kristin Gillibrand became a US Senator in 2009, becoming the youngest person in the Senate at the time. Her 2020 platform includes creating universal healthcare for all that would cover both mental and reproductive health in addition to it's regular standards. Her stance on Medicare For All also stands for reducing the price of prescription drugs as well as aiding in the process of overcoming addiction. Gillibrand also aims to introduce postal banking which would allow those without checking accounts have the opportunity to take out small loans through their local post office. Moreover, she believes in not only the legalization of both medical and recreation marijuana, but in erasing all past convictions from it. Kristin Gillibrand stands with strengthening the middle class by raising the minimum wage to $15/hour, creating paid medical and parental leave for all Americans, and fighting for the right to form unions and protect worker's rights.

8. Amy Klobuchar

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Amy Klobuchar is a lawyer and politician who currently serves as a US Senator from Minnesota. Klobuchar's campaign fights for providing every household in America with high-speed internet by the year 2020 along with aiding farmers by increasing their access to loan programs as well as raising farm bankruptcy debt levels. Moreover, she hopes to better the education system by increasing teacher pay and putting more money towards public schools. As well as increasing the federal Pell Grant and tuition-free one to two year community and technical colleges. Amy Klobucher believes in re-instated the DREAM Act to grant citizenship for foreigners who immigrated to America as minors. She supports immigration reform as well as ending the cruel separation and treatment of families on the lines of the border and creating a refined pathway to gain citizenship.

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