Since I haven't been watching many films lately, I figured I'll spend some time appreciating my favorite ladies in movies and TV to give you all something to enjoy here on the blog...
...and something to possibly get seriously frightened too - the amount of disturbed, often murderous, female characters is truly alarming here, but as you probably noticed already - I love entertaining villains. My favorite female characters can be divided into two groups - characters that I admire for their bravery and charisma and the characters who are few steps ahead and take no shit from anyone. But what they all have in common - they are played by wonderful actresses who were perfect choices for their respective characters and truly brought them to life.
Mandy Milkovich, Shameless
Temperance Brennan, Bones
Selina Kyle, Batman Returns
Daenerys Targaryen, Game of Thrones
Ling Wu, Ally McBeal
Sarah O'Connor, Six Feet Under
Claire Fisher, Six Feet Under
Cersei Lannister, Game of Thrones
Wednesday Addams, The Addams Family, Addams Family Values
Atia of the Julii, Rome
Played by: Ok-bin Kim
description: from TIME magazine wrote in his review "she is Lady Chatterley and Lady Macbeth in one smoldering package." It's such a perfect description of her - master manipulator but with certain innocence about her - real, childish innocence, playfulness, clouded by her dark side to the point she relishes her thirst and murdering ways. There are many wonderful things about Thirst but I always find the character of Tae-ju to be the most fascinating aspect of it. She is one of the most wonderfully complex and entertaining villainesses I've ever seen on film.
9. Marla Singer
played by: Helena Bonham Carter
in: Fight Club
description: Marla, Marla, Marla. Self destructive, independent and twisted. Marla who goes to support groups because the coffee is free and it's cheaper then the movies. Marla who steals pizza and gives monologues about the similarity a condom shares with Cinderella's slipper. Marla whose life's philosophy was that she could die at any moment, any day. Fight Club is a story about so many depressing things, but unlike the Narrator, Marla refuses to be depressed about those depressing things. Her life may not be ideal but she seems to be having fun with whatever it throws at her, always finding the way out.
8. Lisbeth Salander
played by: Rooney Mara
in: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
description: Lisbeth has had a tough life. But she never gave up. She took control, she took revenge and she avenged others. As played by Mara, Lisbeth is much more vulnerable than when she was played by Noomi Rapace. Lisbeth understands there is love and friendship out there and despite all the things that happened to her she is still willing to open her heart to someone else. One of my movie wishes that seems destined not to come true is that Fincher, Mara and Craig finally make that sequel. Mara created something wonderful here and it deserves two more movies just to give her more opportunities to bring Lisbeth to life again.
7. Gillian Owens
played by: Nicole Kidman
in: Practical Magic
description: Practical Magic is one of my all time favorites. The whole story is so beautiful and I love the depiction of sisterhood - the one formed by blood and the one created by the union of women. Nicole Kidman's spirited, fun loving and superstitious Gillian is such a joy to watch as is Sandra Bullock as her grounded and responsible sister Sally. But it's Gillian that is my favorite of the movie - with her meditation in crisis moments, fondness for lucky charms and free love. And Kidman never ever looked prettier and sexier than she does in this movie.
6. Lana Winters
Played by: Sarah Paulson
in: American Horror Story: Asylum
description: Ryan Murphy is not the best writer out there, but he sure created someone truly special in Lana Winters, the main heroine of American Horror Story: Asylum. Played with so much fierceness by Sarah Paulson, Lana is a survivor. She defeated not one but two serial killers. She endured torture, rape, abortion. She didn't bother with tears or depression - she stood up, took revenge and turned her horror story into the story of a true courage and strength.
5. Suzanne Stone
played by: Nicole Kidman
in: To Die For
description: I love an entertaining villain. A villain that is so ridiculously deprived of morals they really do not have many redeeming qualities, if any at all, but because of the sharp script and charismatic performance they are just so much fun to watch. Enter Suzanne Stone. Suzanne wants to be famous. She wants to be on TV. She wants people to know her. When she gets the gig as weather girl she has so much enthusiasm an charm doing her job the world almost stops spinning. And Suzanne will do anything for fame - even plan a murder. Nicole Kidman has delivered countless wonderful performances over the years but she still hasn't topped this one.
4. Alice Morgan
played by: Ruth Wilson
description: Alice is so interesting that I'm willing to forgive her the only thing that can truly make me wish the character rots in the deepest circle of hell - killing a dog. Alice is a genius. She is also a sociopath, to an extent. She doesn't seem interested in others or particularly fond of people. Until she meets John Luther - someone very similar to her, in that he doesn't like rules, but also someone who recognizes several boundaries she crosses routinely. Luther is a great show but what made it particularly entertaining and interesting was the connection and the chemistry between Alice and John.
3. Mavis Gary
played by: Charlize Theron
in: Young Adult
description: Suzanne Stone is an entertaining to watch villain. Mavis Gary is an entertaining to watch catastrophe - she is a disaster, with her gig as a writer of young adult novels coming to an end and her having nothing lined up, endless amount of meaningless one night stands, the feeling of superiority over everyone, drinking problem and let's face it - awful people skills. But her failures and indifference towards changing her life come from the pain she experienced once. Mavis may never change her ways, but her sense of worth and the protective delusions she created make for a rich and interesting character. And someone as perfect as Charlize Theron playing a character whose life isn't perfect only adds to the impact of the film.
2. Lady Catelyn Stark
played by: Michelle Fairley
in: Game of Thrones
Yeah, let me just type this - if you believe Catelyn started the war, if you hate her and if you think she is weak or stupid or as bad of a person as Cersei, take your shit, leave my blog, get a castration and a lobotomy. No, not the latter, you appear to already have gone through that with major success.
My journey with Game of Thrones began when I saw entire first season in one day. It remains my favorite season of that show. Partly because the big focus was put on the court intrigue but also because we spent so much time with Catelyn. In the books she is an admirable character. but not as admirable as Fairley makes her. Most people's chief complain with her is her hatred towards Jon, her husband's bastard (book readers - wink wink). While Catelyn's handling of the situation wasn't perfect, it's certainly not a reason to call her evil - she is human and I wonder just how many of you could look past the fact your husband brought another woman's, someone he cheated on you with (book readers - wink wink), child home and forbade you from asking questions about it.Catelyn's fearless devotion to her family, her fierce bravery and dedication, her unflinching pride, make her the strongest female character in the series. She has flaws but they only make her bravest moments more impressive. BOOK SPOILERS I for one cannot wait to see Stoneheart on the show and hope that she dies in more dignified and less painful way than the first time in the book series - Catelyn Stark deserves to rest peacefully, ideally after finding out her children are still alive. END OF SPOILERS
1. The Black Swan
played by: Natalie Portman
in: Black Swan
description: One of the many reasons Black Swan is my favorite movie of all time is the mystery of it. Is Nina mentally disturbed or is she possessed? And if it's the latter - what is this creature that haunts her? We see Black Swan a number of times in the movie and as frightened as Nina is, the force, or her inner demons taking the control of her, frees her. All Nina wants is to be perfect and she achieves that with the help of her dark side. I love body horror subgenre - the most disturbing horror subgenre there is - and the whole appearance of the Black Swan - a beautiful swan-female hybrid is simply ingenious. The whole story is something that I think a lot of people can relate to - perhaps the only way to be who we want to be - and the best version of it - is to embrace all the parts of ourselves, even those that frighten us. I can only hope Darren Aronofsky goes back to making movies like this one soon.