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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

Where Are the Women? The Salvation

Where Are the Women? The Salvation

Does your movie’s plot need a nudge? Male protagonist and male villain need some feels? Why not try raping some women?

BASIC REPRESENTATION SCORE: 0

[no significant representation of girls/women]

FEMALE AGENCY/POWER/AUTHORITY SCORE: -13

+2
Is there a woman whose role could easily have been played by a man? [why this matters]


-5
Is there a woman who is kidnapped (either onscreen or off) whose kidnap motivates a male protagonist? [why this matters]
-5
Is there a woman who is raped (either onscreen or off) whose rape motivates a male protagonist? [why this matters]
-5
Is there a woman who dies (either onscreen or off) whose death motivates a male protagonist? [why this matters]

THE MALE GAZE SCORE: 0

[no issues]

GENDER/SEXUALITY SCORE: -10

-5
Is there a female character who is primarily defined by her emotional and/or sexual relationship with a man or men? [why this matters]


-5
Is a woman paired romantically with a man old enough to be her father? [why this matters]

WILDCARD SCORE: -5

Is there anything either positive or negative in the film’s representation of women not already accounted for here? (points will vary)

Eva Green’s character is literally mute here: her tongue was cut out by Indians. So even when her motivations (as a sidekick to the bad guy) get confused and even contradictory, we are left to guess what’s going on with her because she is unable to say anything that might explain what she’s about. Hey, it’s one way to keep women’s voices out of a movie. I’d give bonus points for originality, but this is not the kind of originality we need.

TOTAL SCORE: -28

IS THE FILM’S DIRECTOR FEMALE? No (does not impact scoring)

IS THE FILM’S SCREENWRITER FEMALE? No (does not impact scoring)

BOTTOM LINE: Does your movie’s plot need a nudge? Male protagonist and male villain need some feels? Why not try rape? Oh dear, I don’t mean rape the guys. Rape some women nearby. It makes good men angry and bad men happy (that’s how you know they’re bad). It might make women feel something, but who cares: they’re only women.


Click here for the ongoing ranking of 2015’s films for female representation.

NOTE: This is not a “review” of The Salvation! It is simply an examination of how well or how poorly it represents women. (A movie that represents women well can still be a terrible film; a movie that represents women poorly can still be a great film.) Read my review of The Salvation.

See the full rating criteria. (Criteria that do not apply to this film have been deleted in this rating for maximum readability.)


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