Friday, September 25, 2015

The Women's List (PBS-TV REVIEW)

The Women's List
PBS-TV Review by Kam Williams

American Masters Special Profiles 15 Prominent Females

If you're all pontiffed-out from the wall-to-wall TV-coverage of Pope Francis' visit, you might like to take a break to check out this inspirational, American Masters special airing tonight on PBS. Directed by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, The Women's List features one-on-one interviews with a variety of very accomplished females from all walks of life. 
The documentary is his fifth in the series which has similarly profiled prominent Blacks, Boomers, Latinos and Gays. Among the fascinating icons spotlighted here are Pulitzer Prize-winner Toni Morrison, Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, singer Alicia Keys, attorney Gloria Allred, talk show host Wendy Williams, airline pilot Nia Wordlaw, comedienne Margaret Cho and actress Edie Falco, to name a few. 
In her revealing tete-a-tete, the self-deprecating Keys admits to being "a nerd, but a cool-ass nerd" who was valedictorian of her high school. Performance artist Laurie Anderson explains why she never discusses what her inscrutable work is about, while fashion designer Betsey Johnson discusses why she hid the fact that she'd developed breast cancer a decade after getting implants.

Actress Rosie Perez recounts the trauma of being surrendered by her mother to a Catholic orphanage where she was tormented by sadistic nuns on a daily basis. And scriptwriter Shonda Rhimes laments that so many women would rather be cute than equal to men. 
Entrepreneur Sara Blakely waxes romantic about how her father's encouragement to take risks during her formative years played a role in cultivating the critical attitude she needed to launch Spanx shapewear successfully. And scientist/entrepreneur Elizabeth Holmes notes that she might have failed to build that time machine in her backyard as a child although, but while still in her teens, she did launch a company that is now worth over $10 billion. 
An invaluable collection of intimate tales of female empowerment emphasizing the importance of moving deliberately in the direction of your dreams.

Excellent (4 stars)
Running time: 54 minutes
Distributor: PBS-TV

The Women's List premieres on PBS on September 25th 2015 at 9 pm ET/PT (check local listings)
To see a trailer for The Women's List, visit:

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