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die hard is a xmas movie | by maryann johanson

Where Are the Women? Kingsman: The Secret Service

WATWkingsman

No matter how smart, competent, or ambitious a woman is, her place is in support of a man, or — preferably — as a sexual reward for a job well done.

BASIC REPRESENTATION SCORE: -10

-10
Could the protagonist have been female without significantly impacting the film as a whole? (for a film with a male protagonist) [why this matters]

FEMALE AGENCY/POWER/AUTHORITY SCORE: -1

+2
Is there a woman whose role could easily have been played by a man? [why this matters]
+2
More than one? [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: -5

-5
Is a woman introduced by the camera crawling up her body (either front or back) from her feet to her head? [why this matters]

GENDER/SEXUALITY SCORE: -10

-10
Is there a female character who is sexually manipulated or abused by a male protagonist as a way to advance his story? [why this matters]

WILDCARD SCORE: -20

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

-10
The female sidekick to the villain is mostly pretty awesome and perfect — she could have been the villain herself — and she’s present not only to support him in his evil ways but to be a decorative object for the audience’s (and the villain’s) appreciation.
-10
A supporting female character with a significant and distinctive moral authority is reduced to a sexual object by the protagonist, and for the viewing pleasure of him and the audience.

TOTAL SCORE: -46

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

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

BOTTOM LINE: A couple of female characters among the potential Kingsman recruits cannot make up for the film’s overall attitude toward women: that no matter how smart, competent, or ambitious they are, their place is in support of men, or most properly as their sexual playthings and a reward for a job well done.


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

NOTE: This is not a “review” of Kingsman: The Secret Service! 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 Kingsman: The Secret Service.

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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where are the women

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