Discuss the veracity of the following statement:  Thelma and Louise is Hollywood's debt to feminism.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that Scott's film is a significant feminist statement that Hollywood has generated.  Yet,  I don't think that it is a debt to feminism for a couple of reasons.  The first is that I don't think that Scott set out to make a "feminist" film.  Consider Scott's own words to this point:

It's a metaphorical continuation. The film's not about rape. It's about choices and freedom. The only solution is to take your choice which is to take your life.


Scott does not seem to be talking about a particular slant towards feminism, something demonstrated by the ending where the women do not necessarily "win."  While they depart on their own terms, the ending is not a feminist one where the notion of substantive political and social power is evident.  I think that the film does not represent a "debt" to Hollywood's notion of feminism because the film really did not spawn anything else.  If there is a perceived "debt" to feminism, it would certainly require more films to pay this off.  Finally, I would suggest that the film is not necessarily a debt because it indicates that the film cannot stand on its own premises, but rather one formed out of some sense of guilt.  I think that Scott's words and Callie Khouri's script do stand on their own and not formed out of a debt towards feminism.


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