In January (I’m very late, I know) my friend and I went to see Hidden Figures early. I was invited by HarperCollins Nordic DK and I obviously asked my best friend to join me. It was pretty early, but we were very excited to watch it. We got a great introduction, which also made us very excited about the book behind the movie.
Hidden Figures follows the story of the three mathematicians Mary, Katherine and Dorothy. They are all black women who worked as ‘computers’ at NASA. The movie takes place during the space race, and the three women did the math behind the spaceships. They weren’t given any credit for the work they did, but the book by Margot Lee Shetterly shed light on their work. The book itself is nonfiction while the movie deviates a bit.
When the movie starts the women’s jobs are threatened by new technology and their whole department is at risk of closing down. However, the white workers at NASA are¨ in need of a new brain. Katherine who the story mainly follows gets picked for the job and starts working with white males only. The other two are meanwhile fighting to keep their department alive. The movie follows mainly their work life, but you also get to experience their personal lives.
The movie tells a tale of black people’s many years of oppression and women’s struggle in the first years of being on the job market.
The movie has a lot of focus on the math, which I personally loved, but my friend found it rather uninteresting. The thing we both loved were the scenes about the many small things that made life hard for black people. Things like having to bring her own coffee maker and running a mile to reach a toilet for black women left a big impact on both of us.
Even though the society was strictly against them they never gave up and kept their positivity. The movie showed a lighter side to being black, which was nice to see.
It focused greatly on Math, which was a great way to show respect to the work, that these women did, but if you’re not that interested in the subject, you will be a bit bored in some parts. However, it didn’t take much away from our experience with the movie.
Besides that, we found the movie not only to be amazing, but also memorable and necessary. It really stood out from most Hollywood movies in the best of ways, and also sent a very powerful message. You should definitely give it a try! Has anyone read the book? Again a big thanks to HarperCollins for the great event I had a great time.
Fiona (and Nat)