“You got the .50 up? ....... What the f*ck? What the f*ck are you trying to shoot? A jumbo jet out of the sky? Blast down the moon?” – Georgia Sykes to her female partner, Smokin’ Aces
No, the title is not a euphemism. If you are hoping to see an exploration of Russ Meyer movies, or the oeuvre of Pamela Anderson, then you are going to be disappointed. The title is meant literally. And we’re not talking about big handguns, or even machine guns, but some seriously big guns. And no, I’m not going to go all Freudian on what these guns represent for the women, either. Sorry if I disappointed again.
Women with big guns (in the literal sense) have been a relatively recent change in movies. In fact, when the first movie on this list, La Femme Nikita, came out in 1990 the image of the lead actress holding a huge sniper rifle was everywhere when advertising the movie precisely because it was such a different image.
It still took quite a few years after that before another movie had a main female character wielding a big gun. Sure, in 1998’s Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels there was a funny scene with a woman firing a big gun, but she was a very minor character and it was for comic relief. I’m not going to include that one in this category.
Smokin’ Aces in 2006 is the next movie without no-name actors in it that I can remember having a woman knowing her way around a big gun. Finally, in the 2010 movie Red, we got to see Helen Mirren, “the Queen” herself, firing a huge gun (while in elegant evening wear, no less.)
You might be wondering, “Where’s Vasquez from Aliens? Or even Ripley strapping the flamethrower and gun together in the same movie?” I’m saving that movie for another category, but when I do post on it I will tie it back to this category.
You can find my posts for these movies here:
On to the reviews…