A movie that has made quite a splash in the media recently is “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before”. It has been a popular topic in conversations between my friends and I. However, I did not enjoy it. It was a “feel-good” movie as my roommate would say, but that shouldn’t be the only way you look at movies. As consumers and viewers there is definitely ways to be more mindful.
Something I consider before seeing a movie is figuring out whether or not the movie passes the Bechdel Test. I will say this that my views on this has now shifted drastically after not only being a part of this blog, but also just thinking of my own life. The Bechdel test merely claims a movie needs two named female characters to have a conversation not about men. THAT’S IT!? That is the only criteria.
I could blame this on the fact that the test was created in 1985, but it is 2018. Over 30 years ago this was made and it seems so trivial and easy with how much progress we have made in the world, yet so many movies today do not even pass it. Instead of addressing the countless movies that do not pass, I thought by showing you how easy it is to pass would show just how meaningless this test has become and why there should be more required for it.
In “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” there are two instances where the movie passes the Bechdel test….only TWO. In a movie where there is a female lead and a decent amount of other female characters I was shocked and had a hard time even finding these two instances. Those two conversations barely last 5 minutes. EVERY other conversation between women in the movie is centered around men.
Now, to clarify I am not saying that a movie is not good just because it does not pass this test, but this just further justifies the issues that are continuous in the movie industry. The lack of female directors who are recognized, lack of intersectionality within pop culture cinema, wage gap between men and women in film, and the list goes on. Issues I unfortunately do not have time to go into depth about, but the media continuing to push this idea that women need men is far from being cast out of film.
The lead actress in this movie, Lara Jean is told by her father and best friend that they have never seen her so happy since she started dating a boy. Why is this still such a continuous theme in mainstream films?
It is not fair to put all the pressure on female directors to create and promote roles that do not fit specific stereotypes it needs to be a joint effort within the film industry. Heteronormative relationships are not the only type in our society and we need to bring more intersectionality into the media. It is about time we begin bringing others to the forefront AND continue to get rid of the idea that women NEED men. Please leave that back in the 1950s with our aprons.