2.20 – ALIENS (1986) and Gender

Rob and Sam carry on with the ALIEN franchise, and look at James Cameron’s sequel. We cover the ways in which reproduction is explored in this film, its relationship with the first movie, the ways in which different portrayals of femininity are managed, and its comments on the sexual politics of fairy-tales.

This Week’s Watching
HUMANS (2015—): Sam Vincent, Emily Berrington, Gemma Chan
SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON (1960): Ken Annakin, John Mills, Dorothy McGuire

INTERSTELLAR (2014): Christopher Nolan, Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway
STARSHIP TROOPERS (1997): Paul Verhoeven, Casper Van Dien, Dina Meyer
ROBOCOP (1987): Paul Verhoeven, Peter Weller, Nancy Allen
CHERRY FALLS (2000): Geoffrey Wright, Brittany Murphy, Jay Mohr

There’s lots on gender to explore with this week’s episode. There’s the Bechdel-Wallace Test (geekfeminism.wikia.com/wiki/Bechdel-Wallace_test), which we didn’t discuss — but which this film passes with flying colours. (And here’s the website of Alison Bechdel, whose work popularised the concept: dykestowatchoutfor.com.) For more on gender in fairy-tales, see here www.huffingtonpost.com/samara-green/fairy-tales-and-gender-st_b_1273872.html and here news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/young-children-already-buy-into-gender-stereotypes-to-explain-behaviour-in-fairy-tales-study. On the film itself, there’s more at avp.wikia.com/wiki/Aliens_(film), including some interesting stuff on a potential earlier version of the film: http://avp.wikia.com/wiki/Alien_II_(original_treatment). Finally, this is a really interesting piece about a completely different angle on the movie: medium.com/message/why-james-camerons-aliens-is-the-best-movie-about-technology-4741e666e07a#.jh29i6ybh.