Battle of the Sexes
Director: Valerie Faris, Jonathan Deyton
Cast: Emma Stone, Steve Carell, Andrea Riseborough, Elisabeth Shue, Alan Cumming, Sarah Silverman
Country of Origin: USA 2017 121 mins. (12A)
Released by 20th Century Fox
Billed as the tennis match of all time, the Battle of the Sexes. Billie Jean King (Emma Stone), the women's 1972 World Number 1 and chauvinist pig, ex-professional Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell), a has been hero, ex-pro, a weak, cartoon character with a gambling addiction and a rocky marriage. The world tuned in, raw wounds were opened and feminist symbol, Billie Jean King triumphed.
The 1970s, a time of an emerging sexual revolution and a fight for gender equality when male tennis players took top dollar and women were granted a second place handout. Billie Jean, single minded and focused took it on and with Gladys Heldman (Sarah Silverman) formed the Women's Tennis Association which went down like a lead balloon with Bobby Riggs and ATP co-founder Jack Kramer (Bill Pullman). It was personal and political, a game of power, money and sex. Billie Jean's marriage to Larry (Austin Stowell) and her immediate attraction to free-spirited hairdresser Marilyn Barnett (Andrea Riseborough) came under scrutiny and the fight for gender equality hit the news headlines.
A personal, entertaining, off-court drama, with comedic touches, although a bit over long which echoes the spirit of the time and places Bilie Jean's sexuality centre place.