Can we talk about how you're the best director working in American independent film right now? Because if for some reason that was still up for debate, once Certain Women came out last year, that should've been the final word on the matter. One of that film's stars -- and your frequent collaborator -- Michelle Williams called your work "38 things buried under the semblance of nothing", and who am I to argue with Michelle Williams? Whether it's coming from the eco-terrorists in Night Moves or the band of settlers in your feminist western Meek's Cutoff, nobody does silence better than you. Your movies are all gestures and subtlety. They're small movies about universal subjects -- friendship, class, love, poverty, isolation, loneliness, and a subject I find the most universal of all: being a female ranch hand pining for Kristen Stewart. And between the corgi in Certain Women and your own beloved Lucy in both Old Joy and Wendy and Lucy, you are one of the all time greatest directors of dogs. Also, is there a way to comment on your appearance without coming off as sexist? Because if there is, I’d like to mention that your sweater game is basically unparalleled. So like I said: the best.
I ♥ Female Directors
Every year there are studies and lists and think pieces about the lack of female directors working in television and film. And hey, we love studies and lists and think pieces as much as the next gal, but the numbers are soooo depressing and the problem is soooo entrenched and unchanging that reading about it starts to feel a lot like eating your vegetables if vegetables tasted like futility which they do.
We started iheartfemaledirectors.com because we think the biggest thing missing from the conversation about female directors is some good old-fashioned gushy fandom. We will not have achieved true equality until every film school student who ever jizzed himself talking about the exploration of violence and masculinity in Fight Club has also needed a change of pants after discussing the exploration of violence and masculinity in Beau Travail.
Yes, there are historically fewer female directors than male, but there have still been hundreds (thousands?) of great ones. And new female directors are being born and dismissed every minute! So while the major studios’ scientists toil away in their under-the-lot labs, manufacturing the single perfect, hireable female director*, we’ll be swooning over the ones who have already put amazing, love letter-worthy things into the world.
So here’s our plan: every week we’ll put up a new love letter to a female director we’re obsessed with. And look, maybe that won't solve all of sexism in Hollywood. But it might get you to watch an Agnes Varda movie, and isn't that a close second?
• Experienced (but also fresh!)
• Works Constantly (but is always available)
• Commanding (but not emasculating)
• Will represent the wokeness and feminism of the studio (but won’t complain about institutionalized sexism)
• Has a unique voice (but wants to direct mediocre tentpoles)
• A visionary (but takes all notes)