The Marquee

What’s happening at The Picture House

Women Behind the Camera: Film Criticism

by Sarah Soliman

This Women’s History Month, we’re honoring the many women behind the camera who are a vital part of film history. In the past two weeks, The Marquee has covered women filmmakers who influenced the medium in its infancy and women filmmakers who are doing groundbreaking work all over the world.

This week, we’re highlighting a new aspect of the film industry: criticism. We’ve complied a sampling of interviews, reviews, and in-depth essays written by women about films made by women.

As we look at women in film criticism, I’d be remiss in not mentioning Pauline Kael, perhaps the most well-known and influential American film critic. Kael wrote about the work of filmmaker Elaine May, but, unfortunately, I couldn’t find the reviews themselves, only references to them. Some of Kael’s most famous reviews covered Bonnie and Clyde, Citizen Kane, Taxi Driver, and Nashville, and her work is well worth seeking out (New Yorker subscribers can access many of Kael’s reviews in the magazine’s online archives).  

Happy reading!

Prayers for the Stolen by Valerie Complex

Josephine Decker by Kate Erbland

Turning Red by Aiko Hilkinger

Turning Red (dir. Domee Shi)

The World to Come by Ariel Klinghoffer

The Virgin Suicides by Genevieve Koski

“When Women Filmmakers Get to Tell Their Origin Stories” by Beatrice Loayza

The World to Come (dir. Mona Fastvold)

Karyn Kusama by Rae Nudson

“Varda’s Later Work” by Emma Piper-Burket

First Cow by Bessie Rubinstein

Destroyer (dir. Karyn Kusama)

Ari Wegner by Nicole Sperling

Losing Ground by Neyat Yohannes