Film Review: A Heroic Ruth Bader Ginsburg in ‘On the Basis of Sex’

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CHICAGO – Many heroes of America toiled long behind the scenes to break the chains of oppression. For every Susan Anthony or Martin Luther King Jr. there were the activists, legal experts and volunteers who sought the justice denied to them by the archaic patriarchal society. One such hero is Ruth Bader Ginsburg in the film “On the Basis of Sex.” Oscarman rating: 5.0/5.0
Rating: 5.0/5.0

Ginsburg is now on the Supreme Court, but before she got there it was a long climb through the mountain of male dismissal in a society that – according to those males – was not equipped for the equality of gender. Director Mimi Leder creates a step by step journey for the legend, who was one of nine women in her Harvard law class of 500 in the 1950s, who married an essential fellow traveler to her work and who had the guts to follow her conviction to the high court. If you have always admired Ginsburg, portrayed with passion and intuitiveness by Felicity Jones, then after experiencing this film you will love and honor her.

Ruth Bader (Felicity Jones) was a product of Brooklyn and her Russian immigrant parents. Encouraged by her mother (who would die the day before Ruth graduated from high school) she pursued higher education in a 1950s era when women were essentially homemakers. She met her future husband Martin (Armie Hammer) at Cornell University, and enrolled later at Harvard law, part of a handful of women in a man’s world.

Martin and Ruth Ginsburg’s marriage was ahead of the times, with both pursuing their professional lives unabated by roles and sharing in the household rearing of their children. Ruth enhanced her law career as a professor at Columbia University, where she eventually co-founded two major women’s rights societies. In 1970, an obscure tax law would be challenged in a case in which Ginsburg’s abilities proved essential to further equality evolution.

“On the Basis of Sex” opened everywhere on December 25th. Featuring Felicity Jones, Armie Hammer, Justin Theroux, Kathy Bates, Stephen Root and Sam Waterston. Written by Daniel Stiepleman. Directed by Mimi Leder. Rated “PG-13”

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “On the Basis of Sex”

Felicity Jones as Ruth Bader Ginsburg in ‘On the Basis of Sex’
Photo credit: Focus Features

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “On the Basis of Sex”

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