While feminist critics have been uncovering and celebrating the work of female filmmakers for decades, the mainstream understanding of film history remains stubbornly male dominated. In this talk, archive activists Invisible Women invite three critics to discuss alternative ways of imagining the story of cinema that provide more space to acknowledge female contributions.
Taking the films of 1971: The Year Hollywood went Independent as a starting point, this conversation will explore how tales of female vision, artistry and authorship can be teased out from behind macho myths of maverick male genius. A particular focus will be on highlighting the crucial work of women who are not directors (writers, editors, designers), and excavating the often-uncredited contribution of women in husband/wife partnerships (Polly Platt & Peter Bogdanovich, Toby & Bob Rafelson), in order to challenge the inherently patriarchal assumptions of auteur centric criticism. Ultimately, we will draw illuminating parallels between cinema history and persistent intersectional inequality in the industry today.
Hosted by archive activists Invisible Women with guest contributors including Helen O’Hara, author of Women Vs Hollywood: The Fall & Rise of Women in Film and film journalist (Empire), Pamela Hutchinson, author, film historian and critic (Guardian, Sight & Sound, BBC, Criterion, Empire) and writer, broadcaster and film critic for The Observer Simran Hans (Dazed, Sight & Sound, Guardian, New Statesman).