Bechdel Test Movie List

/bech·del test/ n.
1. It has to have at least two [named] women in it
2. Who talk to each other
3. About something besides a man

[[2]] The Cell (2000) [imdb]

This movie passed 2 of 3 tests (although dubious). It was entered by Trina B on 2013-08-06 09:10:03.



Trina B said:
This movie is either a 2/3 or a 0/3.. Jennifer Lopez's character, Katherine, talks to the top doctor who developed the mind mapping procedure that is the premise of the movie, for several minutes... about Edward, their patient. The top doctor is an important character in the movie. However I cannot recall an instance where her name is actually mentioned. May just have missed it.. Anyway, it still ultimately fails the bechdel test. Shame, because The Cell is a viscerally beautiful and interesting movie. .
Message posted on 2013-08-06 09:10:03
Krank said:
Just saw the movie. Her name (Miriam) is used in that conversation. But yeah, the film is a sausage fest.
Message posted on 2014-10-04 22:15:03
aleluminum disagreed with the rating and said:
The rating here is wrong. The movie is a clear pass. Catherine directly mentions Miriam's name (the other top doctor) when they have an extended conversation.

Miriam tells her that the patient (the boy, Edward)'s mother adores Catherine, though the father does not trust her. Catherine asks her what that means for the program and Miriam tells her it means they have 6 months left of financial support. Catherine states that she wants to try a reversal with the therapy, where the subjects are brought into her mind, thinking it will help Edward. She describes how changes in environment helped her child clients when she did social work. Miriam objects, telling her that it is risky and that it could have unknown effects on Catherine. She asks Catherine if she's still having any nightmares, and tells her that she should leave the trauma of her work at home, rather than bring subjects into her mind and let it stay with her.

Though the conversation includes two male subjects--Edward, her child patient, and Edward's father--it also includes Edward's mother, the future of the program, Catherine's previous experience as a child therapist, her desire to switch the program's protocols, and Miriam's concern and advice that doing so will not be beneficial to Catherine's wellbeing. This would absolutely pass the Bechdel Test.

They interact in other scenes, too:

- When Catherine fails to reach Edward and aborts the mission, Miriam asks her what happened and they discuss the bogeyman personality that impeded Catherine's attempts to reach Edward.

- When Catherine takes on the mission to enter Carl's psyche at great risk, Miriam preps her and and asks her if she's sure she wants to do it. Catherine replies that she's sure.
Message posted on 2019-10-18 09:30:04
Ballou disagreed with the rating and said:
Yes, this movie passes. First, Jennifer Lopez’s performance is warm and varied, keyed to the overall themes, and not about coordinating her value to men. The interpersonal stuff is very limited. There are women of color at the center of the film and they talk about their work and their efforts to do hard, amazing things rather than how they can ingratiate themselves to men. Lopez’s character clearly succeeds in spite of men distrusting and attempting to limit her. The film also centers discussions of mental health and trauma and asks us to humanize the antagonist, a killer who dehumanizes his victims... turns the standard serial killer trope on its head. The Cell (2000) was way ahead of its time.
Message posted on 2020-10-19 17:10:19

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