Wif-pdx (Women in Film-Portland, natch) is part activist organization, part information network, and part event sponsor. This very week, for example, they are joining up with NW Documentaries, another kick-ass grassroots film center in Portland, to screen an as-yet-unfinished documentary called Austin Unbound. And if you're in town, I think you should go see it.
In one of the weirder zeitgeist-y mashups we've seen in a while, Bristol Palin and The Situation have teamed up for a "Pause Before You Play" PSA for Candie's. While well-intentioned I'm sure, the result is painfully awkward to behold:
Given mainstream Hollywood's fondness for glamorous actors and happy endings, it is a wonder 2008's Frozen River's lead actress Melissa Leo got an Oscar nomination for Best Actress and first-time writer-director Courtney Hunt a nod for Best Original Screenplay. Surprising none of its fans, both women went home empty-handed.
According to some political pundits, Barbara Boxer faced the most challenging opponent of her Senate career in Carly Fiorina. Any advantageous position she'd had in previous elections as a female Democrat was at least partly erased by the fact that this time around, the GOP candidate was also a woman. And Fiorina had deep personal pockets that she could use to bolster her campaigns financial needs.
Over in the middle of the nation, two women were locked in a battle for the Oklahoma Governor's office. In the midst of this historic event—the state would be picking its first woman governor—there was the press coverage. What were these female candidates wearing?
(Wild Flag cover the Rolling Stones' Beast of Burden. Genderbent covers=some of my favorite things...)
The big exciting announcement in music this week was supposedly that iTunes now has the Beatles catalogue. Well, in news that may shock some of you—I was A. unaware that they didn't already, as I'd never looked for it, and B. unconcerned, as I don't actually like the Beatles.
I understand that the Beatles are incredibly important to the history of rock 'n' roll. Hell, Ringo produced T. Rex, without whom I would not be who I am! (That was a joke. Partly.) But I never get the urge to sit down and listen to the Beatles. I am an Elvis/Stones girl, and yes I know that the Beatles had far better gender politics (well, sorta) than Elvis or Mick Jagger. But the heart wants what the heart wants.
I recently watched afternoon cartoons on Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network and I was shocked to find a flood of highly gendered toy commercials. These ads not only market toys to children but they also promote and encourage gender-specific values that are very limiting to boys and girls in different ways. The values and skills promoted in these commercials can play a critical role in the socalization of youth and their development of emotional expression, conflict resolution, the confidence to pursue various careers and the ability to maintain healthy relationships as adults.
It's a good day to be a feminist music fan, but to quote the immortal words of Levar Burton, "You don't have to take my word for it!" You can see/hear for yourself, because today's B-Sides is bringing you not one, not two, but three awesome ladymusic-related videos to brighten up your workday Tuesday. Lykke Li! Adele! Bikini Kill! Let's get to it!
Well, what do you know? I was just gearing up to write a post about
the Bitch library's recent acquisition of a full set of Sassy magazines—the
first issue! the Kurt 'n' Courtney issue! All the issues!—which were a
gift from the fabulous Rita Hao, forever friend of Bitch and a member
of our National Advisory Board. And then the news came down the
Intertubes that tiny wunderkind style blogger Tavi Gevinson will be
teaming up with founding Sassy editor Jane Pratt to launch a new teen
magazine at some point in the not-too-distant future. According to a
somewhat vague post on Gevinson's blog, Style Rookie:
guys may know how I feel about Sassy. You also may know that I've been
babbling about how I think our generation should get one, too. Jane
Pratt, founding editor and then EIC of Sassy, also became aware, and
emailed me, and we've met a couple times, and it looks like we're going
to start a magazine for an audience of wallflowerly teenage girls.
(I am trying so hard to be cool and professional right now.)
(Trying. so. hard.)
Of course, it won't be Sassy (or the rebirth of Sassy, or Sassy
2.0) and nor do we want it to be. For one, you can't try to recreate
something that good. For another, while I can read old issues of Sassy
and relate, the world has changed a bit in the past 15 or so years, and
that whole Internet thing happened, and this world calls for something
different. Something that will use Sassy as a point of reference for
the whole teen-magazine-that-doesn't-suck thing, and something in which
Jane Pratt will take part, but something that is not trying to recreate
the other something a bunch of us love and don't want to see copied.
Today's entry is one of two movies in the series that is part of a trilogy. It is particularly noteworthy for following an installment that gets more critical attention. Frankly, I think Park Chan-wook's Oldboy is massively overrated. It seems strange to me that Hollywood has attempted to remake it so many times since its 2003 release, though its densely choreographed action sequences and emotional bombast elucidate its stateside mainstream appeal. The feted second feature of the Korean filmmaker's vengeance trilogy is celebrated for its grim subject matter, varied cinematic style, composer Jo Yeong-wook's sophisticated score, and emotional nuance.
Lady Vengeance has all of these elements and far surpasses Oldboy in its ability to dazzle and unnerve.
In the Republican primary for Alaska's Senate seat last summer, Joe Miller beat Lisa Murkowski by the razor-thin margin of 2,000 votes, or less than 1 percent of the total ballots cast. This would have signaled the end for the vast majority of losing candidates, but when Murkowski was asked, again and again, to launch a write-in campaign by residents who apologized for not voting on primary day, she sat down with her extended family to talk it over. Against pollster and campaign experts' advice, and against the wishes of her own Republican Party, she launched a write-in campaign against Joe Miller. As of this weekend she is leading her GOP opponent by a little more than 11,000 ballots. If Murkowski wins, it will be the first write-in win for the Senate since Strom Thurmond did it in 1954 in South Carolina.