Half the Picture is a Full Portrait of Discrimination

 In Documentary, Everything, Good, Woman Director
Colorful pictures of eyes with movie reels in them. Text: The women behind the camera. The stories behind the women.

Half the Picture

Directed by Amy Adrion

The review:

The talking heads in this movie are all women* and all are talking about how hard it is to get a job as a director in Hollywood. Various areas of discrimination are covered** as many directors get to talk about what they love about directing and what keeps them from their love. One thing I learned: it’s just as hard to break into directing TV episodes as it is to direct feature films.***

The verdict: Good

Cost: free via DVD from the Multnomah County Library
Where watched: at home

Further sentences:

*Nearly all are directors, but there’s a woman from the Sundance Institute who pops in now and then, plus a few academics and a reporter who notes that she’s written the same article about the lack of women directors nine or ten times.
**Directing is “too hard” for women. What about their families? Crews don’t like to listen to women. Women can’t direct action/horror/war/most things. Male critics tend to not “get” movies made by women. Things made by women aren’t as good as things made by men.
***This was interesting to me because I’ve noticed that most women feature film directors intersperse directing films with directing TV episodes. It turns out that if you haven’t directed TV, the powers that be aren’t convinced you can direct it, even if you’ve directed entire movies.


  • What do you think the solution is to get more women behind the camera?
  • Who is your favorite woman director?

Other reviews of Half the Picture:

Text: I think people have the impression that being a director is like an athletic weightlifting sport, when actually so much of it is about intimacy and connection and things that women are naturally gifted at. I think so many women feel like they need to take on a persona in order to be able to direct…and that’s just not necessary.—Lena Dunham. Half the Picture. Read the three sentence movie review at 3SMReviews.com
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