To celebrate the 2016 Oscars, I will be posting about the female characters whose actresses won Best Actress and Supporting Actress for performing them. I’m going to also do a little write up for Mad Max: Fury Road since its one of the best feminist action films I’ve seen and won many Oscars this year:
- Greda Wegener (Alicia Vikander won Best Performance by an Actresses in a Supporting Role) became famous in 1926 for painting her then husband Einar Wegener as a woman named Lili Elbe, which helped the landscape painter realize he was actually a woman. By painting Lili as she actually was, Greda helped awaken an urge within the trans-woman to have a body that fit the female body in her mind. Consequently, Lili Elbe became the first man to attempt to have a male-to-female sex reassignment surgery. Even though at first Greda struggled with the loss of her husband, the painter was there for Elbe until she died from complications. Alicia Vikander revealed Greda to be a passionate stubborn woman who refused to live in the shadow of Einar her famous Danish landscape artist and refused to abandon Einer once he became Lili even though society would of been happy to lock Lili up in a mental hospital.
2. Ma (Brie Larson won Best Performance by an Actresses in a Leading Role) created a wonderful world for her son Jack within the gardening shed that they were locked up in by her kidnapper. She made sure that her son learned to read, ate well, worked out, and did art and crafts which he then used as toys to play with. Ma is far from an idealized person, which makes the character so multi-layered. The mother has off days where she can’t even get out of bed to feed herself, but on other days she makes birthday cakes for Jack. Brie Larson’s performance as Ma helped transport me into that small shed and into her mind even when she struggled to grow accustomed to everyday life after their rescue.
3. Mad Max: Fury Road (Won Multiple Academy Awards): With an amputated arm and the ability to drive gigantic truck like a weapon, Imperator Furiosa will go down in celluloid history as one of the most badass heroines in cinema. Furiosa single handedly rescues a group of pregnant sex slaves from a crazy viking steampunk dictator. Then along with a drifter named Max, Imperator Furiosa drives across the desert to her homeland where they meet up with the biker female warriors of her original tribe. This group of misfits brings down a patriarchal society defended by young men designed to live short lives and die while high on fumes.