Mothers. Daughters. Rebels. Suffragettes.
When I received the invitation to attend the very first pre-release screening of Suffragette in the United States I was overwhelmed. Aside from those who had worked on it, I was among the first group of people to watch the film, as well as speak with its director, Sarah Gavron, and writer, Abi Morgan.
Sleep fighting my eyelids, I hopped on the train to make my way over to the Park Avenue Screening Room, regretting skipping my morning tea. However upon my arrival I was greeted by complimentary GlamSquad beauty treatments, hair and makeup, followed by a light brunch featuring All Beauty Water (My favorite flavor is Pomegranate and Rose!), before making my way to my seat in the theater.
I have to admit that I did not know what to expect from this movie screening. The last pre-release screening I had attended was Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, Not So Good, Very Bad Day which was followed by a Q&A with the lovely Jennifer Garner— a very different movie and a very different topic. This was also the first time I would be able to gain insight from a movie writer and director and I was thrilled.
Suffragette (1hr 46 mins) is truly an incredible and inspiring film. It covers the story of the leaders of the women’s suffrage movement in Great Britain during the late 19th and 20th century, in a way that is enlightening and reveals the dark and disturbing hardships suffragettes had to face during the fight for women’s suffrage. The strength and bravery of these women, who faced brutally violent abuse from the government, their husbands, their bosses and their neighbors, because they spoke up for themselves, is incredible.
It is portrayed as such by the film’s A-list cast, including Meryl Streep, Carey Mulligan, Helena Bonham Carter, Ben Whishaw and Brendan Gleeson. The strength of the cast enhances the beautifully written and true storyline, and Carey Mulligan’s amazing performance provides visual and emotional insight into the mind of a “suffragette,” who came to realize that there was nothing more important for the future of her sex than gaining rights, such as the right to vote.
When commenting on the cast, director Sarah Gavron explained, “It is also particularly special that Helena Bonham Carter is playing the role of Edith Ellyn, a suffragette, as Carter is the great-granddaughter of H. H. Asquith, [Prime Minister of the United Kingdom 1908-1916), which he so viciously opposed.” This is truly important to recognize, because it provides us with the knowledge of how recent these events took place in history. H. H. Asquith is 49 year-old Carter’s great-grandfather— it was not until 1928 that all women, regardless of age, social, marital or economic status gained the right to vote in the United Kingdom. Putting this into perspective, American women were not given the right to vote until 1920.
In addition to being an incredible historical film, Suffragette is also incredibly relevant to today. The United States has presidential election debates going on right now, preparing for the 2016 Presidential Election. There are some wonderful candidates running who plan on implementing necessary changes in our country, and there are some much less wonderful candidates running, who might just be doing so for their own benefit. We, the citizens of the United States, are fortunate to have the right to vote for our leaders, regardless of our our race, our sex or our religious beliefs. This freedom is something that we CANNOT take for granted, when so many countries are still striving for this type of democratic voice. We have been granted with the opportunity to have a voice in our society, men and women alike, something that so many groups have fought for in the past. It is up to us to utilize this opportunity to the best of our ability, speak our opinions, and spread awareness for the change that we would like to see in our world.
Suffragette will be out in theaters in the U.S. on Oct. 23rd.
Stay Classy! xx