Students attend private screening of new film


Courtesy of Olive Sullivan

The Chart adviser Olive Sullivan and staff writer Phaze Roeder were among a group allowed to a special screening of Suffragette. The screening took place at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Austin, Texas. The screening was part of the Associated Collegiate Press conference.

Phaze Roeder, Staff Writer

The recently released film Suffragette excels at its aim to give viewers a personal and deeply moving perspective of the women’s movement in early 20th century Britain.

Written, directed, and brought to life entirely by women with such stars as Academy Award nominees Carey Mulligan and Helena Bonham Carter and three-time Academy Award winner Meryl Streep, Suffragette is a strong drama that shows just how far women were willing to go, and just how much they were willing to lose, for their right to equality.

Following the character of Maud (played by Carey Mulligan), a working class mother and wife, as she wakes from placidity and joins the underground suffragette movement throughout the UK, this film will leave you feeling exposed and caught off guard by the brutality and heartbreaking truths of the fight for women’s right to vote.

Led by luminary Emmeline Pankhurst (Meryl Streep) and her bold and igniting statement, “I would rather be a rebel than a slave,” Maud and fellow women’s activists strive to end the 50-year-long struggle for equality.

They face a dangerous game of life and death with the local authorities as the suffragette movement gains publicity and strikes interest across the nation.

Suffragette is full of enticing period detail, showcasing horse-drawn carriages, bicycles, and early years automobiles, while maintaining a distinct segmentation of social hierarchy through the obvious grime and soot surrounding the lower class housing in East London as compared to the elegance of the posh. The women, nobility, and even policemen have time-sensitive clothing that helps to bring the message and ambition of Suffragette to the front line.

During a Q&A with Suffragette writer Abi Morgan in Austin, Texas, Oct. 29, as part of the Associated Collegiate Press Conference, seven members of The Chart staff had an opportunity for some insight into the aspirations and meaning behind the film. The Southern students were part of a select 75-member audience for the special screening of the film, which was released to select theaters on Oct. 23.

Morgan, in response to a question from a student in the audience, said, “Fundamentally I hope the film stands on its own as a piece of entertainment. I hope you don’t get an audience saying, ‘Oh, yeah, it’s that female film,’ or, ‘Just women go and see that.’ Because I’ve got a 14-year-old son and I’ll take him and I’m curious to see what he thinks of it.”

Another hot topic focused around the Suffragette film is that of the obvious influence on current feminist events. A participant in the Q&A asked if Morgan had intended for the film to be a representation of feminism.

Morgan said, “This film was generally born out of curiosity of the storytelling and less about, ‘I want to do a feminist film.’

There is a sort of growing sense of social activism about human equality across the globe and how that reflects in every industry, not just the film industry. So for me, this film’s become part of the discourse. And if that’s useful, that’s great.”