AND OTHER TEENAGE GIRLS ON FILM
In an article in yesterday's Guardian, Eva Wiseman looks back at Michael Lehmann's Heathers, and links it to Brian De Palma's Carrie as a film about a teenage girl with issues, in contrast to typical films about teenage misfits (such as The Breakfast Club). Wiseman quotes Dr Catherine Grant, "an art historian and specialist in the representation of female adolescence in art," about Carrie. "She represents the potential of repressed sexuality that is often attributed to teenage girls," Grant told Wiseman, "and the conflict that occurs between being a 'nice girl' and a sexual adult. She literally explodes with her repressed teen powers." Wiseman then writes, "While Carrie White's budding telekinesis and eventual breakdown are a little way removed from our own secondary school experiences, we share her issues: self-hate, female destruction, sexual frustration, awkward hair."
Wiseman also quotes feminist theorist Kate Random Love, who states that the teenage girl on film "is a wonderful barometer for measuring a culture's fantasies and anxieties about femininity at the time. For example, it's surely no coincidence that in the 1970s - the decade that began with the second wave of feminist uprisings - the most notable representations of female adolescence were in horror films such as The Exorcist and Carrie. Femininity itself became a monstrous force rising up with the potential to destroy everything."