Blog: Female characters in “Interstellar” not enough

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Christopher Nolan is not known for having strong female characters. The director of some of the most financially successful movies of all time, “Interstellar” has even already made $134 million worldwide. Despite this, he fails to clearly adapt a woman in his movies.

“Interstellar” was a pretty good movie. It was a little confusing at times, but the acting was good and the storyline was pretty interesting. That being said, there were only two memorable female characters. Granted, they are engineers and astronauts, but they fail to pass the Bechdel test. Then again, most Nolan films seem to fail said test.

The Bechdel Test, for those who don’t know, is the test that calls for at least two women who talk to each other about something other than a man in any piece of fiction.

In Interstellar, Jessica Chastain plays an engineer with a special connection to Matthew McConaughey. In most scenes, she is doting over Michael Caine, her professor/father figure, or an unnamed character played by Topher Grace. She is also considered to be the key to everything in the movie. Any other explanation veers on complete spoilers, but she is pretty important. And her character still relies on a man. Anne Hathaway plays a fellow astronaut to who has an unnecessary romantic subplot of her own. Two, if you count the supposed chemistry she has with McConaughey’s widow character.

And that’s the problem with Nolan’s female characters. In the Batman series, every woman has to be a love interest for Bruce Wayne. In “Inception”, both female characters share a romantic storyline with men, and never meet and talk about how they are too good for said men.

That doesn’t mean I don’t like those movies. Most Nolan movies are critically and commercially successful, and rightfully so. I am simply saying that if Nolan paid as much attention to his female characters as he does to the special effects, he may have actual balanced and realistic female characters.

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