MoviesReviewsThe Glorias

October 2, 202065/1001396 min
Starring
Alicia Vikander, Julianne Moore, Bette Midler, Janelle Monáe
Written by
Julie Taylor, Sarah Ruhl (screenplay). Gloria Steinem (book)
Directed by
Julie Taymor
Run Time
2h 19min
Release date
September 30th, 2020
Overall Score
Rating Summary

Throughout Gloria Steinem’s life she has been called a great many things, some good and some bad, and all of the in-between we get to hear in The Glorias, the story of a feminist icon. How you tell that story is important and writer Julie Taymor, who also directs decided to cast a wide net instead of going for the deep dive approach. Steinem is played by four different actress, Ryan Kierra Armstrong, Lulu Wilson, Alicia Vikander, and Julianne Moore, all whom are great, but like all good stories we must start at the beginning first.

As a little girl, Gloria (Armstrong) has a curiosity about the world, but really idolizes her father Leo (Timothy Hutton), a man who is always trying to sell something. For most of her young life they spend it traveling around, that is until her parents separated and she moved in with her mother at her old house. Her mother was once a journalist, but being a women she has to use a different name if she wanted to write something important. At this age Steinem (Wilson) devolved a little rebellious streak that would serve her well later in life. After growing up Steinem (Vikander) moves to New York as well as spending some time in India, so that she too can become a journalist, but as a woman she is expected to write about beauty pageants and dating tips. After showing her skills she moves about to other publications and while she gets to write more important stories there are still a lot that is not getting published. Enter starting her own magazine , Ms. And bringing stories that matter to women to the masses. As her life moves into middle age Steinem (Moore) organizes groups to help give a louder voice to the ones that have none and ends up being one of the people responsible for where we are today.

Taymor chooses not to use the linear storytelling approach and instead bounces back and forth in time in the film. One of my favorite things Taymor did , was placing all the Glorias on a bus where they interact with each other, as you get to see the growth as a person Steinem has made through those interactions. While I might have preferred a deeper dive into her life, the story doesn’t lose its relevance because of it. All of the actresses who play Steinem are great as well as the supporting cast that also have some stand out performances. This movie couldn’t have come at a better time for release and it reminds us that we have come so far in improving are views on equality, but how we still have much further to go. For those who don’t have time to read Steinem’s book, this is an excellent cliff notes version of her life, and while not perfect, as there are some questionable choices made (what was going on in that scene with the tornado?), still The Glorias delivers more than it doesn’t. One day we will have a woman who is going to be President and when that day happens it will have been because of women like Steinem, and this movie shows you why.

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