Be Pretty and Shut Up (15*) + Introduction

Part of: Nevertheless, She Persisted

On-sale dates and times
Behind the scenes, making Be Pretty and Shut Up

Frustrated by her own and other women's experiences in the film industry, French actress and activist Delphine Seyrig interviews two dozen French and American 1976.

The expectation to 'be pretty and shut up' is not new, nor has it disappeared since actress-activist Delphine Seyrig (Last Year at Marienbad, Jeanne Dielman...) recorded these interviews over 40 years ago. Seyrig speaks to twenty four French and American actresses, including Maria Schneider, Jane Fonda and Shirley MacLaine, about their experience across the industry. 

Through their words, Seyrig reveals the frustrations of working within the patriarchal studio system that offers a stereotypical and reductive view of women through unimaginative and regressive roles. 

A compelling and ever-relevant cinematic herstory, this frank document gives voice to the concerns of women in the industry and demonstrates the way in which actresses have always supported each other privately, and the power of public declaration to effect change.


France 1981 Dir Delphine Seyrig 110 min

Yto Barrada, whose exhibition Agadir runs in the Curve Gallery, selected this title to celebrate the work of ‘feminist fabulous Delphine Seyrig …my favourite fairy godmother.’

*This film is locally classified by Barbican Cinema 

Please arrive promptly at the advertised start time

Proof of ID may be requested on entry to films, in compliance with BBFC ratings

This film is F-Rated. The F-Rating is a classification for any film which is directed by a  woman, and/or written by a woman.

£5 (limited allocation)


*Excludes 60p booking fee
On-sale dates and times

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Can the arts change the world?

Throughout our 2018 The Art of Change season, we’ll be considering topics including whether art and artists really can bring about change. We asked a group of artists one question: can art make a change? Interestingly, not everyone agreed…

Collection: Cinema

From epic to arthouse, thriller to fantasy and action to animation - take a front-row seat in our cinema as we explore our diverse range of film festivals, ScreenTalks, seasons and events with exclusive interviews, feaures, videos and podcasts.

Can the arts change the world?

Our 2018 season The Art of Change explores how artists respond to, reflect and potentially effect change in the social and political landscape.

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