Plot: The journey to achieve the woman’s vote was not an easy path to walk. Suffragette explores what this wave of feminism had to contend against in order to be heard, more often than not failing and suffering harsh consequences at the hands of the state.
Maud never intended to become involved. But when events spiral out of her control and she loses everything, she knows she can’t give up the fight. She lost her husband, she lost her son. To make it worthwhile, she is determined to see this through to the very end. The bitter end if necessary.
Quote: `You want me to respect the law? Then make the law respectable.`
Opinion: Suffragette was not the best film to watch on a Monday night with a long week ahead. It’s poignant, it’s intense and it is heavy going in places. But it was also a thoroughly good film that did not shy away from what those women had to sacrifice in order to fight for the vote.
The characterisations were powerful. Apart from the famous figures, I have to admit I’m not which characters were fictitious and which were based on real women. But I found the performances to be admirable from all of the actresses involved. While none stood out as being better than the others, Carey Mulligan portrayed Maud’s initial innocence, her loss and then her determination in a way that felt realistic. Through the performances, I felt a strong sense of empathy and connection with these characters.
One aspect, one small tiny detail, that I particularly enjoyed was the accents. These women weren’t prim and proper, they were the ones who had the most to lose by slaving away day after day for pitiful wages, and they spoke as the commoners they were. Such a small detail, yet for me it lent the film authenticity compared to if they had been posh.
Suffragette was an educational film for me. I studied the women’s movement at school and I knew about some of the things they had to go through such as force-feeding. What I hadn’t been aware of was the sheer brutality and the beatings they faced along with the family they lost along the way. This film would be an excellent tool in schools to show the true impact of what the vote means – and what it meant to those women prepared to go further than ever to get what they felt was justice.
This is not the film to watch if you are after some light entertainment. That doesn’t stop it from being a thoroughly good film though. Moving, emotional and easy to engage with. Despite the topic, it was not a heavy going film but showed moments of love and acceptance even when all seemed lost. The women’s mantra “never give up” was a powerful message to be taken from the film.
You have to be in the right mood to want to watch this film. But I definitely recommend seeing it.