What this real life dramatisation does is remind audiences of that essential tenet, whereby everyone has earned the right to be treated equally. A fact which now more than ever needs voicing in political circles on US soil.
Gender equality has never been more important for Hollywood in a post #MeToo climate than right now. Gender specific empowerment and a desire to rectify decades of casting couch sleaze is coming out in films currently being made. These movies always existed, these characters either real or otherwise were always ready for the celluloid treatment, but only now it seems are they pertinent.
What director Mimi Leder does alongside screenwriter David Stiepleman is bring an equality advocate of historical importance to the screen through Ruth Bader Ginsburg. A celebrated Supreme Court Justice of immeasurable standing, women of power in positions of influence rarely come more influential than here. With a solid ensemble including Felicity Jones and Armie Hammer, On The Basis of Sex is both engagingly dramatic without resorting to mawkish sentiment or grandstanding caricature.
Much of this is achieved through an instant chemistry between our two leads who instil edge, empathy and intellect into their gender progressive dynamic. This is as much a history lesson about the steps which were taken to balance the scales as it is about those involved. Jones demonstrates an inner strength and unwavering resolve throughout her performance matched in equal measure by those around her. Hammer by contrast is a warmer presence perfectly counterbalancing Jones in every regard.
Pushing back against an old boy network who value masculinity over intellect, tenacity or perseverance, she defies their pigeonhole mentality to set a precedent. From minute one Ruth Bader Ginsburg is defined by her desire to bring about a change in public thinking, gender dynamics and educational inclusion. Adversity, inequality and cultural stasis are factors which require generational change. Ideas which should evolve in line with public opinion and social need are fundamental as much in law as in any other profession. What this real life dramatisation does is remind audiences of that essential tenet, whereby everyone has earned the right to be treated equally. A fact which now more than ever needs voicing in political circles on US soil.
Written by Martin Carr
Directed by: Mimi Leder
Written by: Daniel Stiepleman
Starring: Felicity Jones, Armie Hammer, Justin Theroux, Sam Waterston, Kathy Bates
Released: 2018 / Genre: Biopic/Drama
Country: USA / IMDB
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On The Basis of Sex is out now on Digital and DVD.