Sunday, May 1, 2011

Kathryn Bigelow

     For this blog post I chose Katherine Bigelow as a note worthy female director to focus on. In late February 2010 Good Morning America showed Chris Connelly’s interview with Katherine Bigelow and they discussed her Oscar Award winning The Hurt Locker. He starts off by describing her as “a great director who had yet to make a great film”. “The Hurt Locker changed all that!”  In the same interview regarding being a role model to other directors she reveals, “a fair amount of tenacity, a little bit of luck, you too could embark on something that means a great deal”.

     With The Hurt Locker, Bigelow became the first woman to win the Academy Award for Best Director, the Directors Guild of America Award for Outstanding Directing, the BAFTA Award for Best Direction, and the Critics' Choice Award for Best Director. Besides The Hurt Locker Bigelow’s best-known films are the cult horror film Near Dark (1987), the surfer/bank robbery action picture Point Break (1991) and the historical/mystery film The Weight of Water (2000)
    She was an art student and then an art teacher. She did some acting in a Lizzie Borden film.  Her early interest in films were by European filmmakers like Passolini and Fassbinder and moved through American B-movie directors of the ‘50s, and then to the likes of Sam Fuller, Sergio Leone and Sam Peckinpah.
        As an exercise in learning narrative, she adapted novels (Patricia Highsmith gave her a free option on “Enough Rope,” which she wrote but couldn’t finance), and even wrote an episode of the TV series “The Equalizer.”
            Is Kathryn Bigelow as auteur? I think she is because even though she did not write most of her films, she has definitely put her own spirit and trademarks into them. For example: she likes the first person point of view and uses this method in most of her films. Most of her films are not feminist in nature, although her film called The Weight of Water is about women trapped in suffocating relationships.
          What I find fascinating about her is that all her movies have been independent and she took a tremendous risk making The Hurt Locker. No other directors wanted to make it. She made it very true to life and documentary like. She doesn’t do what Bell Hooks explained in Making Movie Magic from Reel to Real, “..give the reimagined, reinvented version of the real."


  1. I truly admire women, especially independent filmmakers, who create films inspirational and narrative driven films that convey a personal story to the audience rather than the cliche messages portrayed by the mass media. Another interesting focus about Kathryn Bigalow is that she uses feminist auteur theory in order to depict a story about women engaged in "suffocating relationships." Thanks for the intriguing post!

  2. Kathryn Bigelow did a great job with this film!

    I think that most of the people, if they dont know, would probably think it was directed by a man...Great movie !

  3. Katheryn Bigelow very much deserved that win!

    Although Im excited to hear of any women winning the coveted award I would hope that a)Shes not a one hit wonder and b) She goes on to make movies about women and not stereotypical women either such as Monsters Ball with Halle Berry. Itd be amazing for her to make a powerful for about women but if shes going to be detrimental might as well not do it.Theres enough men in Hollywood to do that job.

  4. FIRST woman to win Academy Award for Best Director only now is rather sad to be honest. I for one never really bothered to know the names of the directors and screen writers of movies. To me they were just another few lines in the rolling credits. So I was pretty ignorant to the fact that there are so few women directors and screen writers in the film industry. I just always assumed that things were pretty even and that women were a part of the Hollywood establishment. But after our class on the women in the film industry I am rather surprised and sadden that even today in 2010 there is such a huge obstacle for women to break through.

    Kathryn Bigelow being the first women to win Best director Academy Award now isn't really something to be proud or happy about. We should be ashamed that only in 2009 this happened. This should have happened decades ago!