Birds Eye View 2014: seven female friendships on film

Girlfriends (1978)

Girlfriends (1978)

A favourite of both Stanley Kubrick and Lena Dunham, Girlfriends is a forgotten classic of US indie cinema. As it gets a rare screening during this year’s Birds Eye View Festival, we look at seven other memorable depictions of female friendship in films either written or directed by women.

On 13 April, Girlfriends, a truly forgotten gem of American indie cinema will return to the big screen for the first time in the UK since its release in 1978. The screening is curated by I am Dora, a curatorial initiative that explores how women relate to each other through the medium of film, and is showing as part of Birds Eye View Film Festival, which celebrates women filmmakers.

Girlfriends, directed by a 27-year-old Claudia Weill, was part of a cycle of female friendship films that flourished in the late 70s and 80s. Films like Julia (1977), The Turning Point (1977) and Rich and Famous (1981), among others, showcased female dynamics with varying degrees of verisimilitude and progressivism. Unlike most of the films in that cycle, Girlfriends was written and produced by a woman completely independent of studio input.

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