Film Review // Climb Like a Girl // Nicole MacGregor
“That’s a good question. It doesn’t really matter does it, as long as you enjoy climbing?”
The expression of doing something ‘like a girl’ has become a familiar insult in the UK, usually words spoken by boys and men as a way of belittling each other or others. This film, by Nicole MacGregor, seeks to challenge and explore what people actually think it means to ‘climb like a girl’.
The film offers a great range of shots of women climbing in locations around the UK and in many different conditions, including dry tooling, outdoor bouldering, indoor climbing and Scottish winter climbing. What’s really nice about this film is that it presents women taking a lead in the activities, something which you don’t see often on film – it is much more likely that you will see a man taking the lead with a woman in a peripheral role or on the sidelines. It doesn’t preach what we should be thinking, but more poses questions and instigates thought and consideration of one’s own interpretation of climbing like a girl.
Nicole uses individual interviews with Katy Forrester and another Katie to discuss in more depth how She has a really nice mix of shots,but sometimes the sections of the film don’t quite join together smoothly. The setups for the interviews needed more consideration to frame the shots better and improve the eyeliner of the speakers. Focussing on this for future films would help to create more of a connection with the protagonists.
She uses a few different pieces of music to add interest and this works adequately, but the sound is variable throughout and this was difficult when we held film screenings, as we couldn’t hear everyone sufficiently.
Perhaps a little more thought about the story and the transitions may have made the film smoother. The ‘story’ doesn’t hold anything back, so there is no rooting for someone trying something hard or going for it. Adding an element of dram and a build up to this would help to add more depth next time.
We hope to run the Women in Mountain Adventure film competition again, so please sign up to our newsletter if you have been inspired and we will notify you when the competition opens again. In the meantime, get filming.
By Emily Pitts
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