Filmmakers represent women in a number of different ways.
How has the director of ONE of the films you have studied in class represented two
different types of women?
In your response refer to the context; and compare the values and aspirations of the
characters you choose to discuss.
The film ‘ Mona Lisa Smile’, Directed by Mike Newell, explores the characters of several women in Wellesley college during the 1950’s.Two of the main characters, Betty Warren and Katharine Watson, portray two very different types of women. Their ideas, values, attitudes, appearances and behaviour reflect their differing understandings of the role of women in their world. Various film techniques are used to convey these characters. Comment by Stephanie Ianniello: introduction
Betty Warren, was a student at Wellesley college in the 1950’s, who believed that the only role women had in life was to marry well and that no women would choose to have a life without a home. At first she was an extremely uptight person who snooped into a lot of people's business so that she was able to write newspaper articles but as time progressed she started to get a new perspective in life and transformed into a completely new woman. Comment by Stephanie Ianniello: topic sentence for Betty
Betty represented the people who followed the stereotypical expectations and traditional roles that society had as that was how her mother had raised her. Betty had gotten married just as she always wanted but realised that she wasn’t as happy as she thought she would’ve been. Divorce was an option that Betty considered but her mother frowned upon it as she followed society’s expectations. Comment by Stephanie Ianniello: explanation
This is evident in the scene where Betty and her mother were speaking about the divorce. Tone is the main technique used in this scene. It was used to convey the anger and disappointment in the voice of Betty’s mum when She strictly replied that no divorce would be taking place. This shows the viewers that Betty’s mom cares more about society’s expectations then her daughter's happiness. Dialogue was also used, towards the end of the movie, when Katherine and Betty were discussing the new life she was going to begin. This technique emphasises that Betty is becoming more alert to the stereotype of society and that there is more to life than just raising a family. Comment by Stephanie Ianniello: evidence
Betty had changed her attitude majorly from the beginning of the film to the end...