To wrap up Pride month and the theme of lesbian arthouse films, we end with the highest profile of the four, AMMONITE (2020). Starring Kate Winslet and Saoirse Ronan, the film is based on two extremely important and real women in the field of paleontology. The movie however is a complete fictional account where the screenwriter supposes a “what-if” about the two, and had they been lesbian and what that relationship would be like.
In the 1840’s, Mary Anning (Kate Winslet) is a self-taught paleontologist, running her family’s store on the English coast selling fossils she finds and categorizes. Geologist Roderick Murchison (James McArdle) and his wife Charlotte (Saoirse Ronan) arrive, where the husband leaves Charlotte in attendance with Mary so to have her learn more about fossils and sciences. Soon the two’s class differences are overlooked and they begin a torrid affair.
The film is directed and written from a completely fictional story by English director Francis Lee. Both actresses were praised for their performances with Kate Winslet especially getting high regard. With its completely fictional story, slow pacing, and little focus on the women’s fossil work, the film received lukewarm reviews by critics. Your co-hosts take a look at this period piece and give their thoughts.