On the Basis of Sex

Felicity Jones stars as Ruth Bader Ginsburg in Mimi Leder's ON THE BASIS OF SEX, a Focus Features release.

Thanks to Entertainment One for the chance to see ‘On the Basis of Sex’ before its national release. This is our review of the movie, but as usual, no matter what we say, we still recommend you to go and see it at your local cinema because there is no better critic than yourself!

On the Basis of Sex stars Felicity Jones and Armie Hammer and is based on the true story of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The story follows Ginsburg’s life as a young law student in the 50s to her legal appeal against gender biased law. 

On the Basis of Sex has all the ingredients to make for a fantastic film but it falls short. Even though the film’s true story is captivating and the acting is first rate, On the Basis of Sex is unable to separate itself from the well trodden path of the “biopic genre”. Ginsburg is an inspirational true figure and has been an advocate for gender equality since the early 70’s. As Ginsburg is renowned for changing laws on gender based discrimination, the film should have had a stronger focus in this area. This would have better showcased her achievements in her career.

Felicity Jones is excellent as Ginsburg. Jones successfully gives the character a believable mix of toughness, intelligence and vulnerability. Armie Hammer plays her husband Martin D Ginsburg and the pair have an intense chemistry onscreen. Martin was a constant support to his wife during her career and this highlights how they were ahead of the times.

On the Basis of Sex succeeds in showing the hardships of a woman wanting to be taken seriously in the field of Law during the 1950s. The film moves at a swift pace and its light hearted uplifting tone makes it an enjoyable viewing experience. 

On the Basis of Sex shows the progression of women’s rights and highlights the monumental role of Ruth Bader Ginsburg in using the law to break down gender stereotypes.