The Horror Honeys: Horror, Feminism, and The Bechdel-Wallace Test...

Horror, Feminism, and The Bechdel-Wallace Test...

An Epic Horror Honeys Project!

Alison Bechdel's 'Dykes to Watch Out For'
To celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Alison Bechdel’s Bechdel Test (Now the Bechdel-Wallace Test), the Honeys thought it might be fun for each Honey to pick three of her favorite films (in their genre or otherwise), and apply the test to them to see how they hold up. The test, established in Bechdel's 1985 comic strip Dykes to Watch Out for, is as follows:

1) Is there more than one woman in the film?
2) Do they have a conversation with each other?
3) Is the conversation about something other than a man?

Even movies with strong female characters can fail the Bechdel test. Avatar fails, because the only women who speak to each other are Neytiri and her mother, and they're talking about Jake. The ENITRE Lord of the Rings trilogy fails, because over the course of ten damn hours, no two female characters speak to each other. Not once. However, insipid tripe like Fifty Shades of Grey and the Twilight films will pass on technicalities, because while the females are the literal worst, they're not talking to each other about men.

Rinko Kikuchi as Mako Mori in 'Pacific Rim'
So no, the Bechdel Test isn't perfect. And other tests for gender equality are starting to pop up, most notably the Mako Mori test. Named after the lead female character in Guillermo Del Toro's Pacific Rim, the Mako Mori test is satisfied if the film features:

a) at least one female character; 
b) who gets her own narrative arc; 
c) that is not about supporting a man’s story.

Will Mako Mori make the Bechdel Test irrelevant? Probably not. But in a Hollywood where women are still struggling to get their stories told, having two different fail safes isn't the worst thing.

So kids, join the Honeys on their journey through gender equality in horror films... And revel with us in some pretty startling discoveries about the horror world!

Zombie Honey Bella's Bechdel Test Project

Film(s) One: Hellraiser I, II (1987, 1988)
I bring up the first two Hellraiser movies because they switch between first place in my head constantly. For me, these movies, 1) represent my “aha - I LOVE horror movies” moment and, 2) never fail to remind me of this fucked up experience we call the “human condition.” Hellraiser isn’t just a tale about some sadomasochistic hell spawn, it’s ultimately a story about people’s struggle with their innermost desires - and the good, and terribly bad, that can come with embracing them. I’ve watched a lot of movies and very few actually run the gamut of emotions in their entirety; Hellraiser does this and does it exceptionally well, in my opinion.

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film(s)? Yes! In all of the sequels, even. In Hellraiser I you have Kirsty and Julia. In Hellraiser II you have Kirsty, Julia, and Tiffany.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! Even though in the second film Tiffany spends most of the movie silent. 
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Yes! Imagine that, two women in horror films talking about something other than a guy. In Hellraiser I - the conversation isn’t particularly deep and does tend to fluctuate between snippets of life and love, but it’s a conversation none-the-less that doesn’t focus on a dude. In Hellraiser II - the conversation is mostly one sided and about a box. But hey, that counts.

Bitchy resting face is not required by the BT.

Film Two: 28 Days Later (2002)
This movie gets a lot of flack for its, apparently, lackluster third act. I don’t have a problem with it. In fact, I love this film from beginning to end. I was on the edge of my seat in the theater from the moment the chimps hit the fan, so-to-speak. I like some really shitty movies and I like some really spectacular movies, for me this movie sits squarely in the center - in a place of perfection -  that makes me flail for it any time I see it. The debate about whether the infected were “zombies” or not isn’t one I’m willing to have anymore - because at the end of the day it doesn’t matter. What matters is how this movie makes you feel and what it makes you think: how you deal with the silence, how you relate to the survivors, and how you feel when Jim becomes enraged without being infected. Ignore the social commentary, and issues you have about the non-zombies, and ultimately this movie is out to attack your nervous system - which it does in abundance. 

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! Selena and Hannah. While one of them is a teenager, she is still a she, and that counts.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! How would you not talk to someone if you were probably the last people alive?
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Yes! Sure, their conversation is mostly talking AT each other, but it’s talking. Driving. Food. Survival. These are not men.

Cillian? We don't need no stinking Cillian.
Film Three: Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962)
Explaining my love for this movie should be more than just “Because Bette Davis and Joan Crawford," right? Right. I was introduced to Bette Davis pretty early on; she’s Mama Blitz’ favorite. Being exposed to her as crazy Baby Jane - well that was just magical. This movie is telling - in regards to child stars - at best, and at worst it’s really fucking unsettling. The lengths to which people will go, and the things they will do to other people, to become famous is astounding. Especially when those other people are family. And, what makes every moment even more uncomfortable is the honest-to-goodness malice that is palpable between Bette and Joan. Those bitter biddies brought their disdain for each other to the big screen and it was mesmerizing and terrifying.

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! It barely stars anyone other than Bette and Joan.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! Granted, quite a bit of it is uncomfortable vitriol towards each other.
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Yes! Despite the weird “Daddy” talk that happens because of Bette’s childlike creepiness - there are plenty of conversations regarding anything other than a dude.

Things not relevant in this moment: penises.

Sci-Fi Honey Katie's Bechdel Test Project

Film One: The Descent (2005)
Neil Marshall’s contemporary classic tells the story of Sarah (the excellent Shauna Macdonald), a woman plagued with grief from the tragic loss of her husband and young daughter in a car accident. As a way to cheer her up, her five best girlfriends take her on a spelunking expedition in an uncharted cave system, where they soon find themselves falling victim to monsters both internal and external. If you weren’t claustrophobic before you saw this movie, it might’ve changed your attitude about exploring dark, suffocating, and altogether unknown spaces – why anyone goes spelunking for “fun” is beyond me. However, it makes a perfect setting for a horror movie: as the women venture further into one subterranean chamber after another, the risk of being entombed and killed escalates considerably. Marshall’s film is not only an astonishing physical feat for his characters; it is also a psychological study of our primal instincts as caged animals, the effects of grievous trauma, and what one is willing to do to survive in desperate circumstances.

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! In fact there are six, count ‘em, SIX named females in this film – seven if you include Jessica, Sarah’s recently-departed daughter, who is a constant presence in her psyche. This is a real accomplishment for film in general, not just horror!
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! These ladies have many conversations throughout the film, ranging from casual chitchat to “HOLY HELL LET’S GET OUT OF HERE!” 
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Yes! While Sarah’s husband might serve as a catalyst for some conflict within the group and is a topic of discussion on more than one occasion, we learn enough about each of these women’s lives through their various conversations with one another that we come to care about each of them by the time the danger arrives. The Descent is the rare film where uniquely well-rounded female characters are a focal point of the story, and not just representations of various stereotypes of their gender.

These are NOT women interested in taking any of your gendered shit.

Film Two: The Fly (1986)
If you love Body Horror as much as I do, you’ve seen a Cronenberg movie or two – and his remake of the 1958 classic sci-fi movie The Fly is one of the best in his vast repertoire of mutation-and-mutilation horror. Jeff Goldblum stars as Seth Brundle, a brilliant but troubled scientist whose attempt to invent a teleportation machine has fused his DNA with that of a common housefly. The resulting transformation is still some of the most grotesque and inventive makeup and practical effects ever put on film. I first saw this movie when I was way too young, and I remember having to cover my eyes during the “arm wrestling” scene. What I soon learned is that this film gets better upon repeat viewings as you get older and are able to understand more of the clever dialogue as well as the allusions to the AIDS-conscious sexual politics of the era.

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! There are two named female characters: Geena Davis as Seth’s maggot-baby mama Veronica, and “Tawny,” his one-night-stand. Even as a fly, the guy gets around.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! Well, sort of… Veronica throws exactly one line of dialogue at Tawny, but it’s a good one: “be afraid. Be VERY afraid.”
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Sadly, no. The person Veronica is warning Tawny to be afraid of is Seth, so technically the conversation is about him. Two out of three ain’t bad, but it looks like Cronenberg didn’t pass the Bechdel Test this time.

She's thinking, "I'll make 'Thelma & Louise' later. It's cool."

Film Three: Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
One of my all-time favorites, I love everything about this movie: the cast, the style, the setting, the paranoia – not to mention it’s a near-perfect adaptation of Ira Levin’s novel. Some of the film is dated (it’s the swingin’ 60s, after all), but the psychological tension is still palpable, and Ruth Gordon gives one of my favorite horror performances of all time as the nosy neighbor from hell. Roman Polanski’s reprehensible actions in his personal life may have tainted most of his work, but I didn’t find out about that until long after I’d seen this film and already fallen in love with All of Them Witches. While I don’t condone his actions, I try not to let it overshadow my love for the work he did before his downfall in the 1970s. I still have all the love for Rosemary and her little spawn of Satan. 

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! Along with Rosemary, there’s Minnie (Ruth Gordon), her adoptive daughter Terry, cult member Laura-Louise, and Rosemary’s numerous girlfriends who try to convince her that there’s something not quite right about her pregnancy…
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! These ladies do love to gab. Rosemary even talks to herself a lot, if that can count as a conversation.
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Yes! Though some of the conversations are centered on Rosemary’s husband Guy and her pregnancy (the result of which is a boy), they also talk about the weather, television, cooking, decorating, and their menstrual cycles. They’re women, after all.

The LAST thing they should be talking about is men. Satan, however...

Monster Honey Jennica's Bechdel Test Project

Film One: The Bad Seed (1956)
I mostly credit my older sister for kickstarting my horror fandom into gear, but my mom specifically turned me on to the creepy child sub-genre. As a family favorite, my mom and I would not only watch The Bad Seed repeatedly when I was growing up, but we would (and still do) quote the movie all the time. There are an infinite number of reasons that I'm so attached to this film, the most important of which is that it has acted as a sort of horror security blanket for me as an adult. When I'm hundreds of miles away, I can throw on The Bad Seed and feel as if my mom is right there with me. Aside from sentimental value, the film fascinates me because of my own underlying fear of ever entering motherhood. I often refer to this movie as the first "evil child" horror movie, but the most horrifying part is that there isn't anything about the story that is fantastical. Rhoda Penmark isn't a monster, or possessed, or a witch. She's just an ordinary young lady with bad genetics and a bad temper. 

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! Little Rhoda might not be old enough to be called a woman, but two of the other lead characters are women: Rhoda's mother, Christine, and the upstairs neighbor, Monica. In addition, the film also includes Rhoda's teacher, Ms. Fern, and the unforgettable Hortense Daigle, the mother of the boy who "mysteriously" drowned during the school picnic.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! Christine spends much of the film having one-on-one conversations with the other leading ladies.
Is the conversation about anything other than a man? Yes! In fact, not a single conversation had between any of the women is about a man. How on earth did women in the 1950s manage to go about their days without gushing about big, strong men? While Christine communicates with Ms. Fern and Hortense regarding Rhoda's unusual behavior, she engages in an extensive conversation with Monica regarding psychoanalysis and the unsettling possibility that a person could be innately bad.

You pass... but you crazy, girl. You crazy.

Film Two: Don't Look in the Basement (1973)
My absolute favorite of all of the notorious "Don't" films of the 1970s and 1980s, Don't Look in the Basement is not your typical slasher. There aren't any babysitters, there aren't any sorority girls, and you won't find any camp counselors. As a long-time former student of psychology, I have always been especially fascinated by the less than ethical studies in the field and the more intense mental disorders, making Don't Look in the Basement a wonderland for my eyeballs. I'm drawn to the classic psychiatric facility setting and the portrait of each individual patient being trapped within their own reality. Despite the disorders displayed being perhaps somewhat overacted, this film has the one quality that makes me uneasy in many of my favorite films: it's an absolutely plausible situation. Most psychiatric patients are harmless, but there are real people out there with real disorders that could in fact snap when you least expect it. All psychology set aside, this is a fun bloody B-movie with bizarre characters, necrophilia, and a crafty plot twist.

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! There are several distinct women in the film including a delusional doctor, a sex-crazed lunatic, a demented elderly woman, a mute, a paranoid "mother," and a jumpy new caretaker.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! New hire Charlotte socializes with the rather nutty Dr. Masters as well as the female patients at the hospital.
Is the conversation about anything other than a man? Yes! When Charlotte first arrives at the hospital, she is greeted by Dr. Masters, who introduces her to the patients and the head doctor's abnormal treatment methods. Charlotte proceeds to attempt sensical conversations with the colorful patients who are eager to reveal a chilling secret about the head doctor.

Odds are good that they're probably talking to each other.
Or she thinks they are.

Film Three: Beyond the Door (aka The Devil Within Her) (1974)
When I first saw The Exorcist at the age of nine, I was brought to tears at the very idea of a demonic entity bursting through the depths of Hell to take over the soul of a human being. Growing up in a Christian family, there wasn't much discussion about the darker side of religion. Books and movies were my introduction to evil. While The Exorcist acted as a serious warning against evil, Beyond the Door made The Devil's dirty work appear somewhat seductive and almost enticing. Often acknowledged as the highest grossing rip-off of The Exorcist, this film takes possession of the innocent a step further and the characters don't need to be possessed to carry on surprisingly profane conversations. However, as far as pure evil goes, the only thing more sinister than the possession of a young girl is the possession of a mother and her unborn child. Aside from containing some of the most disturbing scenes in a film of this sub-genre, Beyond the Door is very aware of the time in which it was made. A 1970s Italian film set in San Francisco, the hippy capital of the world, this film points fingers at the horrors of domesticity and objectification to the tune of the funkiest ode to Satan I've ever heard.

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! There is the pregnant and possessed Jessica and her doctor's wife, Barbara.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! Although they only have one scene together, they have one meaningful conversation.
Is the conversation about anything other than a man? Yes! The conversation begins with Jessica's concerns about her husband's reaction to her pregnancy, but it soon trails off into a conversation about Jessica's anxieties about life in general and her occasional wish to escape.

You don't have to talk to a woman... but talk to someone.
About... that.

Revenge Honey Linnie's Bechdel Test Project

Film One: An American Werewolf in London (1981)
John Landis' An American Werewolf in London is a movie of firsts for me... One of the first horror films I found on my own, one of the first horror movies that showed me how sexy horror can be, and the first horror movie to set the werewolf bar for all future werewolf films (a standard that's never come close to being exceeded, by the way). Additionally, Alex (Jenny Agutter) is probably my favorite traditional final girl in horror film history. But when I set out to apply the Bechdel Test to one of my favorite films, I wasn't prepared for what the results would be... which was a bummer.

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! We have Alex, our "final girl," her female co-worker at the hospital, the barmaid in East Proctor, and David's mom and little sister, who we see in his dream sequence.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Well, yes. Alex and her fellow nurse do. But...
Is the conversation about something other than a man? No. They are talking about David's penis size. So obviously, they are discussing a man. Unfortunately, under the third prong of the Bechdel Test, An American Werewolf in London fails, despite Alex being one of my favorite final girls.

You may not have a decent convo with another woman, but... compromises.

Film Two: Spider Baby (1967)
Jack Hill's Spider Baby: Or the Maddest Story Ever Told IS my favorite horror movie. Done. No questions about it. The film, about a family cursed with a genetic illness that causes them to evolotionally regress to a state of pure instinct (including the desire to kill and eat human flesh), is filled to the brim with creepiness, violence, humor, horror, and love. Starring Lon Chaney Jr., Beverly Washburn, Jill Banner, and Sid Haig, Spider Baby has long felt like my own little secret, as a surprising lack of people have actually seen it. Hopefully after today, more of you will give it a chance!

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! There are actually an equal amount of female and male characters in Spider Baby: Virginia and Elizabeth Merrye, Emily Howe, and Ann Morris. The film is about the whole Merrye family, as well as their butler. But Virginia and Elizabeth are definitely the stars.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! Virginia and Elizabeth plot aplenty, as does their greedy cousin Emily. Conversations take place constantly amongst the female family members, as well as with secretary Ann.
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Yes! The women in Spider Baby talk about plenty of things: murder, inheritance, and family chief among them. They may not be the most traditionally moral of ladies, but landing a man is far from one of their main concerns.

The only man they care about is one they can stab.

Film Three: Ms. 45 (1981)
"Don't know why they wanna persecute me because I don't talk to women? All women do is laugh and sing and say the word ‘pussy.’ You ask any doctor and he'll tell you that." ~ Homeless Woman, Ms. 45

Well, I walked myself into a Bechdel Test minefield with Abel Ferrera's Ms. 45. Not because the film is anti-feminist (it's not) or because it's offensive to women (it's definitely not), but because the lead character Thana (Zoë Lund) is a mute. The seamstress is attacked and raped not once, but twice, in the same day during the most violent year in New Your City's history. Tired of being a victim, Thana goes on a revenge spree, playing silent vigilante and taking down essentially any man she deems remotely capable of current or future violence. The sexual politics of Ms. 45 are complicated, as is the film's finale in which *SPOILER ALTERT* Thana is literally stabbed in the back by one of her female friends. It's a shocking ending to a film in which a woman had been fairly strong and seemingly unstoppable. So the question then becomes, of course, does it manage to pass the Bechdel Test in spite of the ending?

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! Obviously the star of Ms. 45 is Thana, but she works with a multitude of women at the fashion house where she is a seamstress. Her named friends include Laurie and Carol, who appear regularly throughout the film. Thana also has the requisite nosy neighbor, who is either very worried about her mute neighbor, or just an obnoxious old busy body.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes... ish? Thana doesn't conventionally speak with anyone, and often her co-workers are just talking AT her, rather than TO her. Even when another woman is trying to help her, they're mostly just shouting questions at her that can't be answered or she has to write answers to, so whether or not she engages in conversation with another woman is debatable.
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Yes! When Thana's co-workers talk to each other, it's about... sandwiches. But it's not men! Until they're yelling at a man for being a creep (but valid). And when everyone else shouts concerns at Thana, it's related to her well-being, not men. But for real, Ms. 45 is a minefield of technicalities, however it is on these technicalities that it seems to pass the Bechdel Test.

That woman behind you is holding a giant phallis... I mean knife.

Head Honey Kat's Bechdel Test Project

Film One: The Exorcist (1974)
My love for "The scariest movie ever made" goes back a long way, and while I never found it *scary* per se, every time I watch it (and I watch it a LOT) I find something new that disturbs me a little more, or makes me uncomfortable, or a new segment that I have to rewind to appreciate again. The story of The Exorcist is a classic one now, and is held up as the gold standard of possession films. It's not perfect by any means, but it's damn near close. Reagan's possession is not only a symbol of the perversion of innocence, but a mirror for the faults and personal sins of the rest of the characters revolving around her. No one is truly innocent in The Exorcist, except for Reagan, and is she really innocent in this context? It seems like a strange question to ask about a twelve-year-old girl, but where demonic possession is concerned, the question is always present - how did the demon get in? It's the little sins that are the most insidious, and when you really look closely at The Exorcist, they all come into play. Twelve is a tricky age, especially for women; existing on the tightrope between childhood and the terrifying reality of "actual" womanhood and the expectations of puberty, Reagan is extremely vulnerable, and while she acts in many ways like a child, she is not entirely encased in that protective bubble of innocence anymore.

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! There are four women in The Exorcist: Chris (Reagan's mother, played by Ellen Burstyn), Sharon (Reagan's nanny/Chris' assistant, Kitty Winn), Willi (the housekeeper, Gina Petrushka) and of course, Reagan (Linda Blair) - however, as much as the film is about Reagan and her possession, it could be argued that The Exorcist is really about Father Karras (Jason Miller).
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! The first act of The Exorcist is all about the women in this film. They talk to each other constantly, and the audience is introduced to the special bond between mother and daughter, and the personalities of the women in the film. Even Willi, the housekeeper, is included.
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Yes! Thankfully, as the film revolves around the possession of a young girl, the majority of the conversation is about her. However, as the film progresses, the conversation shifts to a focus on the trials of Father Merrin and Father Karras.

Film Two: Alien
Despite my past flailings about Ridley Scott and his attempts to completely distance himself from his own ground-breaking Sci-Fi/Horror creation, there is nothing I don't love about Alien (except Veronica Cartwright, but that's a different story). Alien introduced the world to a new kind of sci-fi hero, Ellen Ripley (OMG a badass woman! And dat PERM!), and a new kind of villain, the xenomorph. And lets not forget its rapey life-cycle *shudder*. What seems to resonate most with people when you talk about Ellen Ripley is that the issue of her gender isn't really a thing... because she's rarely referred to by her first name, and she does things that could conceivably be done by a male character. Ripley takes charge like a man, controls the hysterical woman on the ship (I'd slap Veronica Cartwright too, but that's a different story), exposes the bad guy, makes important decisions to ensure the well being of the crew, and ultimately mankind. Dude stuff! However, let's also not forget that the one scene everyone remembers is when she strips down to her futuristic white cotton skimpies in the final scenes. *sigh*

If you don't think this image is iconic,
you're lying to yourself.
Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! Ripley and Lambert are the only two women aboard the Nostromo. But while Ripley's character could have been played by a man or a woman, Lambert is most definitely female. She has feels. So many feels.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Nooo. Unless you count the part where Lambert screams "You bitch!" at Ripley, who responds by slapping her face off. The women in Alien have conversations *around* each other, but never directly, and never alone.
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Nope. Obviously the entirety of the conversation for the bulk of the film is either about WTF is on Kane's face, WTF just burst out of Kane's chest cavity, WTF Ash, and then OMFG we're all going to die because of that thing that burst out of Kane's chest cavity. Because we enter the film and experience the crew's relationships as something already established, it's safe to assume that much of the "deep" conversation between characters exists on a plane outside of the film. Sorry, ladies, no time for chit chat, Weyland-Yutani business is afoot.

Film Three: The Craft
If you were a young woman growing up in the 90s, and especially if you were a bit of a weirdo who may or may not have been into witchcraft at the time, The Craft was the best thing going. I was obsessed with this movie, and Fairuza Balk, obviously. On the surface The Craft is a teen chick flick; it's not so much a coming of age film (those are for boys) as it is a film about finding power within oneself and the courage to use that power. Issues of revenge, betrayal, the misuse of power, and of taking responsibility for one's actions are also prevalent themes. Being a teen is a time of no consequence... you do whatever, and consequences mean nothing, unless you're messing with witchcraft. Many people have told me that The Craft is about how catty women can be with each other and deride it as such, but while I would tend to disagree, there's more to it than that. Yes, those themes are also present, but to pass it off as the only message behind the film is like saying that the core message of Gone Girl is that "bitches be cray." You're not wrong... but you're also not seeing the whole picture, and that's the problematic part.

Does it pass the Bechdel Test?
Is there more than one woman in the film? Yes! Holy crap, it's a babefest. The Craft is full of women connecting and interacting in a myriad of different ways. Men are a sidebar in The Craft, and they're also all relegated to the painful stereotype roles typically reserved for women in movies about men finding their way.
Do they have a conversation with each other? Yes! Holy crap, it's a miracle. Conversations held in secret, dangerous conversations about feelings, emotions, painful past experiences, and their own personal growth and development as women and as people... shocking stuff.
Is the conversation about something other than a man? Yes and No... Sarah's immediate obsession with Chris (blech) is the topic of much conversation, and he is also the focus of her wish at their Great Rite - way to squander that chance for something rad. Nancy's quest for revenge against Chris is also a focal point of the story, as is his death. So, there's something not quite right here. Conversations and ultimately the magical workings of the girls are really just that... the actions of girls and not women. Which, considering they're all sixteen makes the obvious connections to Vanity (oh, Bonnie), Lust (whomp whomp, Sarah), Rage (I'd be pissed too, Rochelle) and Greed (Nancy, Nancy, Nancy...) even more obvious. Considering the film was written without a woman in sight, these generalizations are what is probably most problematic about the film, and the realization that this is what men believe happens to girls when they are left unattended; and that says more than any scripted conversation ever could.