There’s a new Star Wars film out which some say is the best since The Empire Strikes Back, and Princess Leia is up next for revision.
A nice coincidence, especially since actor Carrie Fisher, who plays the original Leia, also plays Leia in later years as Senator and General Leia Organa.
Reflecting attitudes of the late 1970s, Leia is cast as a feminist and still serves today as a feminist role model.
A few people say she’s not a great feminist icon, but on the whole Leia is seen that way.
Perhaps the critics don’t like the male chauvinism that pervades the early Star Wars scripts.
Han Solo, for instance, condescendingly says he knows, despite Leia’s apparent disgust toward his sexual advances, that she “really wants it.” And Leia’s role in the film sometimes evokes a more traditional female sex role stereotype.
As noted in a sidebar at Wikipedia:
Leia wearing her iconic golden “metal bikini” slave outfit at Jabba’s palace. Leia’s appearance has been voted one of the most memorable swimsuit moments of cinema history.¹
Is this a showcase for the feminist sentiments of the time? I suppose it depends on the person interpreting. Like most social movements, feminism moves within a total context so has been evolving… slowly.
Before her untimely death in 2016 Fisher occasionally introduced vintage films with Turner Classic Movies host Robert Osborne.
She also struggled with mood swings that she managed with drug use. Embracing the diagnosis of “bipolar disorder” given to her by the medical establishment, she evidently had no other way to decode her feelings and the medical model arguably didn’t help too much.
This is unfortunate. I often feel that if some took a broader view of their unconventional psychological experiences they might get a better grip on them—without the use of heavy drugs or, as Fisher underwent, ECT.²
General Leia is in theaters as I write this. The posthumous release of Fisher’s performance in The Last Jedi is helping to make box office records.
Like all Hollywood greats, Fisher lives.
¹ This quote is from several years ago. The link and caption has changed to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Princess_Leia%27s_bikini
² Recently I was surprised to learn that the medical establishment still practices ECT. When I took psych in the 1980s ECT was frowned upon as a part of psychiatry’s dark history. That this practice continues today, with such spurious scientific backing, imo is horrific.
Star Wars: 15 Crazy Minor Characters You NEED To Know About (screenrant.com)
Review – ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ (space.com)
“The Last Jedi” Felt Like a Dream. I’m Not Sure I Even Really Saw It. (motherjones.com)