ENTERTAINMENT

International Women's Day: 'Wayne's World' And 14 Other Films You (Probably) Didn't Know Were Made By Women

08/03/2016 16:26 GMT | Updated 09/03/2016 12:59 GMT

Entertainment recommendation site itcher marks International Women’s Day with this great selection of films with women behind the scenes...

MUST WATCH

1. 'American Psycho' (Mary Harron, 2000)

Christian Bale stars as a successful, image-obsessed Wall Street executive who rapidly descends into madness, resulting in a trail of 80’s pop-rock filled violence. Chloe Sevigney, Reese Witherspoon and Jared Leto all provide stellar performances alongside Bale’s disturbed antihero, as Harron provides us with some of the finest filmmaking of the early 00’s.

2. 'Wayne's World' (Penelope Spheeris, 1992)

Slacker friends Wayne (Mike Myers) and Garth (Dana Carvey) are thrown into the world of commercial TV and struggle to save their show, not to mention Wayne's girlfriend. Spheeris, along with a fantastic script and some career-defining performances, hits every comedy note in this ever-quotable classic

3. 'The Piano' (Jane Campion, 1993)

Mute Scottish pianist Ada disembarks for New Zealand alongside her daughter for an arranged marriage. Loss and lust are intertwined in this female-centric film, which saw Anna Paquin take home the Best Supporting Actress Oscar aged just 11, as well as Campion winning her own academy award for the film’s superb screenplay.

4. 'We Need To Talk about Kevin' (Lynne Ramsay, 2011)

Centring around a mother's struggle to love her son despite his devious behaviour, this movie shows that evil can be even more powerful when being exercised by children. Tilda Swinton’s stunning performance alone provides enough reason to watch this harrowing-yet-superb film over and over again.

5. ‘Point Break’ (Kathryn Bigelow, 1991)

A young FBI agent (Keanu Reeves) is sent undercover into a group of surfers to find out if they are the gang of bank robbers he’s looking for, whilst getting drawn into the surfer lifestyle, in future first-female-Oscar-winning-director Bigelow’s iconic crime thriller.

UNDERRATED

1. 'Ravenous' (Antonia Bird, 1999)

A comedy-horror film involving a cannibalist ambush over a military outpost. Despite the mixed reviews, this film has become a cult staple, with an outstanding cast headed up by Guy Pearce. Whilst she has continued working in TV, ‘Ravenous’ marks Bird’s only feature film in 17 years, and every re-watch leaves us wishing her back into to the director’s chair.

2. ‘Selma’ (Ava DuVernay, 2014)

An honest portrayal of Martin Luther King's epic march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama in 1965 to campaign for equal voting rights, ‘Selma’ was the quiet underdog in the 2015 Oscars, and whilst it sadly missed out directing and acting nominations, it definitely deserves to be watched – not just for the impact of its story, but as a fantastic piece of filmmaking.

3. ‘Step Up’ (Anne Fletcher, 2006)

Whilst dance films may not be everyone’s cup of tea, ‘Step Up’ invigorated the genre in the mid 00’s, and introduced us to Channing Tatum’s impressive footwork years before ‘Magic Mike’. After vandalizing a performing arts school, Tatum’s Tyler Gage is given the chance to earn a scholarship and dance with up and coming dancer Nora (Tatum’s future real-life spouse Jenna Dewan).

4. ‘The Future’ (Miranda July, 2011)

After a couple decides to adopt a stray cat their life begins to change radically, altering time and space and testing their faith in each other, in a dark and curiously funny film that perfectly shows off July’s directing, writing and acting talents, with July both in a lead role as Sophie as well as providing the voice of Paw-Paw.

5. ‘Palo Alto’ (Gia Coppola, 2013)

Whilst Gia Coppola may be somewhat overshadowed by her super-famous family, her debut feature film is a charming tale of high school love featuring performances from the likes of Emma Roberts, James Franco and father-and-son duo Val and Jack Kilmer.

UNKNOWN

1. ‘A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night’ (Ana Lily Amirpour, 2014)

Set in the fictional Iranian ghost-town Bad City, a vampire stalks the unaware townspeople in Amirpour’s writing and directorial feature film debut, which was met with rave reviews upon release.

2. 'The Adventures of Prince Achmed' (Lotte Reiniger, 1926)

Considered the oldest surviving animated feature film, 'The Adventures of Prince Achmed' is a magical story that involves flying horses, witches, demons and princesses. The film features a silhouette animation technique invented by Reiniger, involving cardboard cutouts and thin sheets of lead under a camera, using stop-motion to bring the story to life.

3. 'Cleo de 5 a 7' (Agnès Varda, 1962)

Here, the audience spends two hours in pop singer Cleo's life while awaiting her biopsy results, wandering around Paris and eventually coming to terms with who she truly is, in this beautiful monochromatic drama.

4. 'Persepolis' (Marjane Satrapi, Vincent Paronnaud, 2007)

Addressing questions about the tolerance of other cultures and peoples, 'Persepolis' follows an Iranian girl as she learns to live inside and outside her homeland. This French-Iranian-American animation is based on Satrapi’s autobiographical novel of the same name, set against the backdrop of the Iranian Revolution in the 1970’s.

5. Orlando (Sally Potter, 1992)

Tilda Swinton plays nobleman Orlando, who's horrified when he wakes up as a woman one morning and terrified of the consequences this may bring. This curious romantic drama is one that will stay with the viewer long after watching, no doubt thanks to yet another superb turn from Swinton.

Find out more about this collection of films on Itcher's dedicated film page.

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