Betsy West and Julie Cohen's portrait of the iconic civil rights hero balances serious moments with comical anecdotes.
"RBG" is a fascinating documentary which chronicles Ruth Bader Ginsburg's journey to becoming an iconic hero of civil rights. Serving on the Supreme Court for 25 years, she has managed to fight injustice with dignity and tremendous courage.
In 1957, Ginsburg attended Harvard Law School and endured gender indignities. She eventually graduated from Columbia University after having transferred to take care of her beloved husband Marty. Unable to secure a job in New York, she began to fight the injustices that were being perpetrated upon women. In 1993, President Bill Clinton chose Ginsburg to serve on the Supreme Court. Up until 1981, the court had been all male when Sandra Day O'Connor broke the mold. Ginsburg created a new one with bold sculpting.
She championed the rights of both men and women, realizing that gender-based discrimination affects everyone. Her opinion on abortion rights and sexual equality (2009) was that, "government has no business making that choice for a woman," inferring that a woman was being treated less than "a real person." Ginsburg soon became know as the "great dissenter" and the hero for equal rights.
Betsy West and Julie Cohen direct this intimate portrait of the center-left jurist with a profound sense of admiration and deep gratitude. From Ginsburg's childhood to the present, they lend vast insight into how she rose to being the defender of the American Dream. Parents, mentors and renown litigators were instrumental in molding this tiny woman into the great voice she became, promoting liberty and justice for all.
Unexpected comical anecdotes are provided to enhance our perception of a woman who balances wit and wisdom on a par with Lady Justice. Ginsburg loves working out (an hour each day), the opera and watching Kate McKinnon parody her on SNL. She's a horrible cook and her closest colleague on the court was Antonin Scalia. Despite their conflicting ideologies, they shared hilarious moments with one another on screen.
"RBG" is a film about devotion, being independent and changing the world without demonizing others. On the bench, Ginsburg understood that the court's function was to carry out the law, not to set political policy. Jennifer Hudson sings "I'll Fight" as the credits roll. The power of the lyrics stand as a tremendous tribute to a deserving warrior of freedom for all. Thank you, Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Note: A special screening of "RBG" will be held at Burns Court Cinemas on 7/14/18 @ 11:00 am. A discussion will follow hosted by Gus Mollasis.
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