The goal of this series is to show that being "manly" and being disconnected with your emotions do not necessarily go hand-in-hand. While the approach to these articles is one of comedy and satire, the emotional core of these movies is very valid. Manly movies often times have the potential to make guys cry, for example:
There are plenty (though not as much as there should be) films with female leads. For today's purposes I'm not focusing on films with females in leading roles ALONGSIDE men, but rather as the only main character. Hunger Games? Half her motivation is love interest. Divergent? Same thing. I'm talking about the movies that show how badass women can be. I'm taking about the movies that make any viewer root for the hero and forget gender. I'm talking about the following list of great movies that hopefully will have many more joining their ranks in the coming years. For my money women leads in films try harder, knowing the rare honor they have grabbed from the otherwise male dominated industry. I'll take one Decent over 10 Guy Pierce Lockout pieces of junk any day.
Yes, Sigourney Weaver is in all 4 (soon to be 5) Alien franchise films. And yes, I'm ignoring the Alien vs Predator movies because they don't deserve to be mentioned. The purpose of picking the second film over the first one is how the character of Ripley is treated. In the first film, she's reactionary. Nothing is known about the alien creature, and though Ripley rises through the ashes as a survivor, that's all she is; a survivor. In the second film, Ripley already knows what she's facing. She's so confident that despite being surrounded by professional commandos (something she wishes she had in the first film) she dismisses them as naive and under-prepared. By the end of this film Ripley can look a 20 foot space-monster in the face and lob verbal insults at it. Try telling Ripley from the first movie to do that!
The sad part comes from a small few lines of dialogue, and if not for the recent Alien: Isolation video game might still be more obscure than mainstream. Ripley had a daughter. "Had" being the operative word; between the first and second film Ripley slept through her daughter's entire life. Thanks to Paul "Jerk-face" Reiser's machinations, Ripley has no chance to truly digest this, and instead finds Newt as a surrogate daughter. Then when Newt is carried away near the end of the film, Ripley snaps. Luckily for Newt, she snaps in the "fight" rather than "flight" direction, but the prospect of sleeping through one daughter's life, then watching another daughter get space-rape-exploded was too much for her to bear. It's an "eff-yeah" tear being shed, but a tear nonetheless.
Full disclosure: I'm putting serious thought into naming my potential future daughter Ripley. Cause awesome.