It wasn’t so long ago Hollywood was a completely male-dominated industry, and while we’ve still got a long way to go, it’s now easier to list off a number of honourable female film directors. From Olivia Wilde to Nancy Meyers and Phyllida Lloyd, the world has taken huge steps towards showcasing the work of women directors who have paved the way to developing the most compelling stories on-screen. Here, we’ve rounded up a few of the greatest films directed by women, which you can find on Netflix Australia.
Woman directors on Netflix: Which movies are our favourites?
Julie & Julia (2009)
Julie & Julia is a biographical comedy-drama film written and directed by the late Nora Ephron, starring Meryl Streep, Amy Adams, Stanley Tucci and Chris Messina. Based on two true stories, the film intertwines the life of chef Julia Child (Streep) in the early years of her culinary career with the life of young New Yorker Julie Powell (Adams), who sets herself the challenge of cooking all 524 recipes in Child’s cookbook in 365 days. It received a plethora of positive reviews from critics upon its premiere and was the film that gained Streep a Golden Globe Award and her 16th Oscar nomination.
Athlete A (2020)
This gripping documentary co-directed by Bonni Cohen, focuses on the gymnasts who survived USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar’s abuse and the reporters who exposed the USGA’s dirty work and toxic culture that had been brushed under the rug for decades. It features notable gymnasts, including Maggie Nichols, Olympic bronze medallist Jamie Dantzcher and former gymnast Rachael Denhollander.
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018)
Directed by Susan Johnson and written by Sofia Alvarez, this cute teen-rom com is about teenage girl Lara Jean Covey (played by Lana Condor) who writes letters to all of her past lovers, which are meant for her eyes only. However, when all the love letters are sent out to their recipients by her younger sister, her life is thrown into complete chaos.
Homecoming: A Film By Beyonce (2019)
We know her, and we adore her. Homecoming is an in-depth look at American singer Beyoncé’s performance at the 2018 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. It features behind-the-scenes footage of rehearsals, family home videos and footage of real university halftime shows sprinkled throughout. It’s been labelled as one of the greatest concert documentaries to date, which we wouldn’t think anything less coming from Queen B.
Knock Down the House (2019)
Directed and produced by Rachel Lears, Knock Down the House is a 2019 U.S. documentary film that takes the viewers behind the scenes as four determined working-class women running for Congress. The young bartender in the Bronx, the coal miner’s daughter in West Virginia, the grieving mother in Nevada and the registered nurse in Missouri build a movement to challenge powerful and wealthy politicians in the 2018 race for Congress.
The Intern (2015)
Directed by Nancy Meyers, who is also the brains behind other iconic rom-com including It’s Complicated and The Holiday, this film is about Ben Whittaker (Robert De Niro), a 70-year-old widower who realises he’s not ready for retirement. So, he applies to become a senior intern at a fashion website, where he forms an unlikely friendship with the company’s workaholic CEO Jules Ostin (Anne Hathaway). While underestimated at first, Ben quickly wins over his co-workers with his helpful advice, wisdom and sense of humour. It really is the movie that’s sure to put a smile on your face.
Mama Mia! The Movie (2008)
This is the film that needs no introduction besides a gentle reminder that it’s directed by Phyllida Lloyd. But really, with Hollywood greats including Meryl Streep, Pierce Brosnan, Amanda Seyfried, Colin Firth, Christine Baranski, Stelian Skarsgard and Julie Walters who dance and sing their way through popular ABBA songs while on a colourful Greek island, Mama Mia! The Movie (and its sequels) should be on everyone’s list (yes, even those who aren’t fans of musicals).
Are there any other woman directors who you’re particularly enjoying at the moment? Let us know who in the comments section below!