There aren’t many Jennifer Aniston movies that I don’t love. Ever since 1996, when she exploded into Hollywood on Friends and in her first feature film, Picture Perfect, I’ve been watching Aniston and every single acting move she makes. And since that time, her career has been full of great projects, successful films, and even stronger female characters. In fact, some Aniston’s best work has also been some of her most feminist. The times when she plays women who are strong and nuanced and independent are really some of Jennifer Aniston’s best roles.
Just take a look at her filmography, and you’ll see a long list of movies that are about women who are more complicated and complex than most of the other films being made in Hollywood. Even in the films that hide behind the label of romantic comedy, Aniston chooses roles that show women at their strongest. Well, either that or she turns two-dimensional women on their heads, breathing new life into flat characters just by being the awesome actress that she is. Whichever one it is, it is undeniable that Jennifer Aniston is a feminist force to be reckoned with.
Don’t believe me? Check out this list of Aniston’s most feminist films, ranked by just how much justice they do to the women characters in them.
10. The Object Of My Affection
A single mother determined to raise her unborn child on her
own? Love that. The fact that she falls in love with her gay best friend? Maybe
not so much.
9. He’s Just Not That Into You
A classic rom-com for all of your girls’ nights in, this
film stars Jennifer Aniston as the woman unsure of whether she’s in the right
relationship when her boyfriend doesn’t propose. Instead of waiting around for
him to make up his mind, she takes the initiative and starts a life without
8. Horrible Bosses
As Dr. Julia Harris, D.D.S., Aniston plays one badass boss
lady who gets what she wants, even if it’s by intimidation. Or, um, sexual
harassment in the work place.
7. We’re The Millers
Aniston plays a stripper who is faking domestic bliss with a
set of strangers in order to make a little money. The best part about Aniston’s
role? She doesn’t play her part as a stereotypical stripper. Nope. No damaged
and broken victims here. She plays her as a woman who owns her career choice
and isn’t ashamed of it.
6. Office Space
A nice girl trying to make it work at a crappy job without
killing her obnoxious boss? Sounds like a few awesome girls I know. The fact
that this character isn’t over-the-top feminine or objectified makes this one
of Aniston’s most feminist roles to date.
5. The Switch
Aniston plays a woman sick of waiting for a man to start her
life. She decides to get pregnant on her own. Little does she know, her best
friend, played by Jason Bateman, switches out the donated sperm for his own.
4. The Good Girl
Battling depression and a whole lot of self-evaluation,
Aniston’s character in The Good Girl
asks herself the questions all good feminists should: What is it that I want out of life?
3. Along Came Polly
Aniston plays Polly Prince, a hard-to-pin-down woman with a
ton of spunk and a wonderful sense of daring. Definitely a girl you’d want to
be friends with. And a girl who represents us ladies well.
2. Friends With Money
Playing Olivia, a woman who quits her job and struggles to
find a place with her wealthy female friends, Aniston tackles a lot of
important feminist topics in this one. Like finding a career that fulfills you
and the power of supportive women.
Through the support of a whole cast of women, Claire finds a
way to break free of a past trauma and the chronic pain she has suffered ever
since. Cake is a beautiful movie that
rightfully earned Aniston the acting praise she really deserves.
Now, if you don’t mind, I’m going to go spend the rest of my night with a bowl of popcorn in my lap and an Aniston movie marathon on my TV.
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