Taking the Broad View

18 07 2010

Claire Denis, Isabelle Huppert, White Material

'White Material'

 Why are there so few female film directors? That’s a question that’s long been chewed over by critics, academics and the viewing public alike. Does the film industry, consciously or otherwise, marginalise female talent? Is it hopelessly macho and sexist? Or is the very act of film-making – arranging people, lights and cameras, ordering and categorising the world – one that speaks to male needs and neuroses much more deeply than it does to those of most women?

Beats me. But in a way, a more interesting question is: what kind of films do female directors make when they get the chance to do so? And are the stories that they choose to tell qualitatively different from those of their male contemporaries?

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