30 Feminist Christmas Movies, Ranked

5 of 31

White Christmas, Screencap via Paramount Pictures

White Christmas

Bob Wallace and Phil Davis are former soldiers and entertainers/producers who reconnect with their commanding officer, Waverly at his Vermont inn. When Waverly mentions that having no snowfall has led the inn to dire financial straits, Bob and Phil decide to surprise him by mounting a show there to attract business. They enlist the cast and crew of their musical, as well as their new friends, performers Betty (Rosemary Clooney) and Judy (Vera-Ellen). In the midst of preparations for the show, Bob and Betty face trials and tribulations while Phil and Judy seek to set them up with each other.

The Good

  • “Sisters”, the song and performance by Betty and Judy, is a feminist affirmation of their devotion to each other over men or other petty squabbles.
  • Judy is a boss who takes charge of everything – her career, her sister’s career, her love life, her sister’s love life…Okay, maybe that last one isn’t the best move. But ultimately, she is looking out for herself and for Betty and doing whatever it takes to get them where they want to be.
  • Betty leaves Bob and the inn when she thinks he’s not exhibiting moral character, showing independence and a commitment to justice.

The Bad

  • It doesn’t quite pass the Bechdel test. Judy and Betty talk to each other relatively frequently, but mostly to discuss Bob and Phil. Unless you count the time that Judy tells Betty to go get a snack before bed…but it’s actually a trick to get her to spend some time with Bob. So, no dice.

The Ugly

  • While the women in the story do have their own careers, most of the actions they take are meant to help Bob and Phil achieve their goals, rather than to achieve their own.