Bring It On (2000)

Bring-It-On-2000

Plot summary: High school senior Torrance is ecstatic to be named captain of her prestigious squad, the Toros, and eager to lead them to their sixth national cheerleading championship – until she finds that all of their routines were stolen from an inner-city squad, the Clovers.

Trigger/content warnings: This blog entry contains discussions of misogyny, homophobia (including some slurs) and racism.

In this entry, I discuss the representation of cheerleaders as athletes, verbal ass-kicking, race and gender in the 2000 cheerleading comedy Bring It On.

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Hide and Seek (2005)

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Plot summary: After the passing of her mother, nine-year-old Emily devises an imaginary friend, Charlie, whose influence over Emily troubles her father. When people close to Emily begin getting hurt, David must ask: is Emily behind this … or is Charlie real?

Trigger/content warnings: This blog entry contains discussions of mental illness, suicide, murder, animal abuse, paedophilia, spousal/family violence and horror themes. There are also heavy spoilers for the film Hide and Seek.

This blog entry discusses the figure of the sinister girl-child and the representation of trauma and mental illness in the 2005 psychological thriller film Hide and Seek.

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The Wild Thornberrys Movie (2002)

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Plot Summary: Eliza Thornberry, a girl with the power to talk to animals, travels across Africa in order to thwart poachers, rescue a cheetah cub and save hundreds of elephants from destruction.

In this entry, I look at healthy family dynamics, sisterly love, interracial friendships/relationships, beauty standards and colonialism/White supremacy in the American animated comedy The Wild Thornberrys Movie. (The content under the cut contains spoilers.)

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Girlfight (2000)

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Plot Summary: Diana, a troubled Latina teenager from Brooklyn, decides to become a boxer, despite the scorn of both her father and men involved in the sport. When she masters the sport, she is presented with a dilemma when she must enter a bout against her boyfriend, a fellow boxer in her weight class.

Trigger/content warnings: This blog entry contains discussions of racism, suicide, domestic abuse, misgendering and fear of attacks/murder by men.

Girlfight is a sports drama film that deserves to be a classic. Released at the turn of the millennium alongside other independent films about young people mastering sports not traditionally considered appropriate for their gender (such as Billy Elliot and Bend It Like Beckham), Girlfight is an electrifying look at a girl of colour who learns to value herself and demand respect through mastering a sport. (The content under the cut contains spoilers.)

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Anita and Me (2002)

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Plot summary: 1972. Meena is a British Indian girl who lives with her family in the sleepy White, working-class mining village of Tollington in the Black Country. Meena meets Anita, a White fourteen-year-old whom she comes to idolise. However, a rift arises between the two girls due to Anita’s acceptance of her boyfriend’s racism toward Indians.

Trigger/content warning: This blog entry contains discussions of racist violence, racist slurs, statutory rape, internalised homophobia and fat-shaming.

Anita and Me was released within a small vogue for films about British Indians, characterised by East is East and especially Bend It Like Beckham. It was often compared unfavourably to Bend It Like Beckham, which I find unfair, considering that they’re both valuable stories, but quite different ones. (The content under the cut contains spoilers.) Continue reading “Anita and Me (2002)”

Rabbit-Proof Fence (2002)

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Plot Summary: In Western Australia, 1931, children with mixed Aboriginal and White ancestry are forcibly removed from their families and incarcerated at the Moore River Native Settlement, to be trained as servants for White people. Sisters Molly and Daisy and their cousin Gracie escape the settlement. Their aim: to walk the 1500 kilometres home to Jigalong, across unforgiving terrain, pursued by the authorities.

Trigger/content warnings: This blog post includes discussions and/or mentions of forced removal of Aboriginal children, rape, racism, child abuse, sexual assault, racism and suicide. It also includes names and images of Aboriginal people who have passed away.

Rabbit-Proof Fence was a smash hit when it was released in Australia in 2002. For me, it’s one of the ultimate girl power films, and all the more powerful for having been based on true events. (The content under the cut contains spoilers.) Continue reading “Rabbit-Proof Fence (2002)”