How “Dumplin’” is changing the view of female leads

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On December 7th, 2018, the book “Dumplin’” by Julie Murphy was made into a Netflix original movie starring Jennifer Aniston, Danielle Macdonald, Odeya Rush, and Dove Cameron, and many other stars.

The lead actress of this iconic movie, Danielle Macdonald, breaks all of the rules that have been set by Hollywood for decades. Willowdean Dixon is one of the first plus sized lead characters who is not on a diet or actively trying to lose weight.

Throughout the movie, she says multiple times that even though she knows she is overweight, she is comfortable enough in her own skin. She does not let bullies get the best of her, and takes pride in who she is.

Multiple times during the movie, people call her “whale” and her mom calls her “dumplin’”; however, Willowdean does not take the harassment, she stands up for herself against the aggressors.

While in most movies talking about something as serious as bullying fully focus on the subject, in Dumplin’ it’s more of an underlying issue because of how she addresses it.

People need to realize the impact strong female characters have on young impressionable girls. Seeing strong women dealing with real problems is extremely beneficial.

For decades, audiences have seen the same thing over and over again. Skinny, tall, white, blonde and bug-eyed, damsels in distress, society’s typical idea of beauty.

Real people do not look one certain way, and aspiring to be that way sets a bad precedent in young girls’ heads for what they have to look like to be considered beautiful and find love.

One key example of this is Reese Witherspoon’s role as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde. Though she could be seen as a good role model to strive for one’s goals, the way her character is portrayed still perportartes the status quo of having to be traditionally beautiful to get ahead in life.

However, Willowdean sends the message that as long as you believe in yourself and try to be the best version of yourself, anything is possible not matter what you look like.

Many people are under the misconception that people that have different body types do not hang out and that all people who are heavier hate their bodies and want to change themselves. This movie shows how people of all races, genders, and body types love each other.

Society is becoming more accepting of plus size women, and this movie is a step in the right direction. Hollywood is changing for the better; it’s addressing real peoples problems and not shying away from controversial topics.

For girls who have ever felt insecure about their bodies this movie is very inspirational as Willowdean is one of the first true plus sized role models in film who is going to change how girls think about themselves forever especially the younger viewers.

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