While Hollywood has been trying a little harder lately to strive for gender equality in movies, the uproar in response to the female Ghostbusters reboot last year is just one example of how far we have to go.
One way of analyzing films for, if not gender equality, at the very least minimal representation, is the Bechdel test. The Bechdel test requires a film to have:
- at least two women in it
- who talk to each other
- about something other than a man
*adopts Miranda Priestly voice* Am I reaching for the stars here?
Still, only around 69% of IMDB’s most popular films passes the Bechdel test, which leaves a full 30% of popular movies that don’t have female characters who speak at all, or at least not about anything other than men. Only 32% of 2016’s biggest movies passed the test, and many fan-favorites like The Social Network and the Lord of the Rings trilogy don’t even come close.
So, in that vein, here are a few Netflix films to stream that meet this low, low bar:
The Bechdel test is only one way to analyze female representation in films, and in no way factors in women of color or other underrepresented groups. It also can include many films that are not even the least bit empowering or feminist.
Still, like anything, it’s a start, and a way to begin noticing films that underrepresent women.