Eve is given an empowering voice in a series of films by and about women

January 14, 1994|By Scott Timberg

A six-week film series titled "The Voices of Eve," which opens today at the Walters Art Gallery, offers films from a variety of cultures centered on a theme of social or familial dislocation.

The series "reflects contemporary issues in the growing, and yet ever-changing, role of women," said Tori Weaver, a spokeswoman for the Walters. Many of the films are "reflections on personal histories that any woman could go to and find something that relates to them."

The series, says Ms. Weaver, "deals with the empowerment of women and is a celebration of what's out there." Most of the films are directed by women.

Tonight's screening, at 7:30, is "Strangers in Good Company," directed by Canadian Cynthia Scott. It recycles the old staple of strangers stranded; this time, after a bus breakdown, with nine actresses in the key roles. The schedule for subsequent weeks:

Jan. 21. The film is American: "Committed," directed by Sheila McLaughlin and Lynne Tillman. It's a documentary on '30s movie star Frances Farmer who, after a breakdown, was ultimately lobotomized. The same materials were covered more superficially in the Hollywood film "Frances," with Jessica Lange.

Jan. 29. The entry is "The Body Beautiful," an English film directed by Ngozi Onwurah, which explores the meaning of the body to women. The dramatic crux of the story turns on a mother's undergoing a radical mastectomy while her daughter is succeeding as a model.

The second film on the bill is "Adam's Rib," but don't look for Spence and Katy. It's a Russian film, by Vyacheslav Krishtofovich, about single women in Moscow's deteriorating society.

Feb. 4. Another double feature: "Sink or Swim," an autobiographical film by Su Friedrich examines the father-daughter relationship. Then there's the Canadian film "My Niagara," again not to be confused with Marilyn Monroe's first starring role from the early '50s (that one was just "Niagara.") "My Niagara" follows a daughter whose mother has died, struggling to build a better relationship with her father.

Feb. 18. "Rosalie Goes Shopping," an American film directed by the whimsical German Percy Adlon, who did both "Sugarbaby" and "Bagdad Cafe." This one tracks a mother of seven with a tendency to overuse the old credit card, on the theory that if you're $100,000 in debt, it's your problem, but if you're $1,000,000 in debt, it's the bank's problem.

Feb. 25. The series closes out with "Surname Viet, Given Name Nam," directed by Trinh T. Minh-ha, an examination of feminist culture in post-war Vietnam.

All the films will be shown in the museum's Graham Auditorium. Admission is $3; $2 to members, students and seniors. For more information, call the Walters at 547-9000.

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