With the premiere of the much anticipated Ocean’s 8 right around the corner, it is important to look at the timeless female ensemble films that shaped our understanding of sisterhood and teamwork. From a crew of modern witches to bright-eyed subordinates taking their misogynist boss down, we have rounded up 10 films that were squad goals before the term was coined.
9 to 5 (1980)
This office satire brought together Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, and Dolly Parton—in her debut role—and quickly became a cult favourite. When Violet—played by Tomlin—gets overlooked for a promotion because of her gender, the trio fantasize and later plot to seek revenge on their sexist boss.
SNL veterans Maya Rudolph and Kristen Wiig are two best friends whose lives are spiralling in separate directions. Lillian (Maya Rudolph) shares her recent engagement and Annie (Kristen Wigg) whose life is at an all-time low, has no choice but to serve as her maid of honour. The hilarious group of bridesmaids celebrate the outdated rituals when chaos breaks loose just moments before the big day.
Mystic Pizza (1988)
Three waitresses; Kat (Annabeth Gish), Daisy (Julia Roberts), and Jojo (Lili Taylor) each have a different idea about love. Jojo, soon to be married, finds herself losing hope while Kat and Daisy have lost their heart. The girls sling pizzas and share their hopes and dreams of one day escaping their small town.
Whip it (2009)
Desiring to break free from her mother’s (Marcia Gay Harden) world of beauty pageants, Bliss Cavendar (Ellen Page) joins a rowdy and rebellious roller derby team. The perfect outlet for dealing with her small-town misery, Bliss finds freedom and friendship in her new found sport.
The Help (2011)
Based on Kathryn Stockett‘s American novel set in Mississippi in the 1960s, the southern society girl, Skeeter (Emma Stone) is an aspiring writer with big dreams. Choosing to interview black women who have spent their lives taking care of prominent white families, Skeeter turns her small town on its ear when many women decide to come forward.
Set in a remote Turkish Village, this film follows the lives of five young orphaned sisters (Günes Sensoy, Tugba Sunguroglu, Elit Iscan, Doğa Doğuşlu, and İlayda Akdoğan) and the challenges they face growing up in a conservative society. With a common passion for wanting freedom, the girls stand up together as their family members prepare them for arranged marriages.
The Craft (1996)
After years of being on the outside at their Catholic high school, three wannabe witches (Neve Campbell, Rachel True, Fairuza Balk) find themselves a fourth member (Robin Tunney) with a telekinetic gift to join their black magic rituals. When a minor spell goes wrong, the girls discover their powers have dangerous consequences, leading them to unlikely problems.
A League of Their Own (1992)
Set in the time of World War II, where the stock for American men had depleted, two competitive sisters, Dottie Hinson (Geena Davis) and Kit Keller (Lori Petty) join the first female professional baseball league. Keeping the sport alive, the “Rockford Peaches” managed by the has-been Jimmy Dugan (Tom Hanks) finds themselves surrounded by drama and mischief on their way to superstardom.
How to Marry a Millionaire (1953)
Three fascinating females pool their beauty and funds into renting a posh Manhattan penthouse where they plan on luring in their valuable victims. On a mission to find the money and man of their dreams, Schatze Page (Lauren Bacall), Loco Dempsey (Betty Grable), and Pola Debevoise (Marilyn Monroe) plans unravel as they soon realize a man is worthless unless you’re in love with him.
The Beguiled (2017)
An unexpected arrival of a wounded Union soldier, John McBurney (Colin Farrell), seeks refuge at a female boarding school where he finds himself in the hands of teachers and students who seem more than willing to help. The film starring Elle Fanning, Kirsten Dunst, and Nicole Kidman soon becomes a steamy but restrained thriller leading to jealousy and betrayal.