The Women Diane English

The Women Diane English
It is unlikely that feminist pioneers like Mary Wollstonecraft or Susan B. Anthony would be particularly impressed that their efforts would result in some women continuing to perform culture for a dominant male gaze, only with these fashionable new careers and rights being paraded around with the same "desire me" attitude as a designer handbag, a pair of Manolo Blahniks or a baby. It seems that with equal rights some women have not come to define themselves by knowledge; rather men have jumped on the passive performance bandwagon, concerned equally with what insipid accessory is in fashion, ultimately ensuring the dominance of consumerism at the expense of evolution and critical thinking. Garbage like The Women, a hackneyed, clichéd ode to crappy television production, overacting and wrongfully misguided modes of empowerment, does little to help this phenomenon, as indeed, here women are doing everything a man can do but they are doing it while stabbing each other in the back and concerning themselves more so with their hair than their minds. Based on the stage production and 1939 movie of the same name, The Women follows socialite Mary Haines (Meg Ryan) after discovering that her husband is having an affair with a salesgirl (Eva Mendes). With the help of her editor friend Sylvia (Annette Bening), her breeder friend Edie (Debra Messing) and her lesbian friend Alex (Jada Pinkett Smith), Mary rebuilds her confidence by looking fabulous, designing clothes and learning nothing more than the lesson of how to keep a man. Not a single male is shown on camera throughout the film, until Debra Messing shoves one out of her birth canal at the end, which may be empowering to some, until they watch the "making of" and see that the majority of the crew is male. Also included on the DVD is a Dove "body image" featurette where a corn-fed teenage girl interviews the cast and crew on "being a woman." Deleted scenes with a stoned Bette Midler and a kooky Debi Mazar are also available. (Alliance)