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After graduating from film school, entering into the world of entertainment was a challenge.  I’d receive encouragement and praise from my peers, but there would always be an invisible shadow looming in the distance, the one that wasn’t exactly cool about me being a woman in a community and workforce dominated by the opposite gender. Sure, I finally found my place, but it is (and always will be) a bit more of a struggle – which is something I can connect with when it comes to the character of Cruz Ramirez in Cars 3.

In the film, Cruz is labeled as the energetic, spunky new trainer to the down-on-his-luck Lightning McQueen. Decorated in a colorful yellow coat and full of spirit, she’s trying her best to make her client the best he can be…while also secretly dreaming of becoming a racer herself one day. But she was constantly told in her past that she’ll never make it and those notions knock her self-esteem down to the lowest of lows.

Yet, as Cars 3 goes along, Cruz eventually finds her way down the road of life that she has always wanted, but the way she gets to those goals makes me a bit uncomfortable – both in how her dreams are achieved on the screen and in how a majority of the industry seems to be patting their back on how great Cruz’s role in this franchise is.

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The Most Underrated Moments in Pixar History

The 12 Most Underrated Pixar Moments

Whenever there’s a conversation about the work of Pixar, it tends to shift into emotional reactions their films produce. And when you’ve been having these conversations for as long as I have, you tend to notice that the same specific moments are always brought up. These would likely include the emotional rollercoaster that begins Up, the intense start to Finding Nemo, or the edge-of-your-seat climax of Toy Story 3. But with such a rich catalog of feature films (and shorts), there are many funny, lovely, and truly bizarre moments within the company’s history that seem to never get the spotlight they deserve.

So with the release of Cars 3 this week, it seems only right that a new list of moments needed to be created. Some of these are funny and others might make you cry, but as with anything related to the house that made Buzz and Woody, there’s a lot of mushy feelings involved. So sit back, grab onto your Luxo Jr. ball, and let’s take a look into some of the more underrated Pixar moments.

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Wonder Woman‘s Patty Jenkins has quite a weight on her shoulders. Not only is she directing the big screen adaptation of DC’s beloved heroine, but she has to prove something to the world: that women can direct a blockbuster just as well as the big boys in the movie industry. And with all of the positive reviews out there, Patty seems to be winning that battle.

Yet this brings us to another big question – who should be the next female director to bring a comic book property to the big screen? Sony seems to think it’ll be Gina Prince-Bythewood with their Silver Sable/Black Cat movie. But let’s look even further. Consider this piece a guidebook to spur on some discussion, along with maybe giving some studio executives an idea or two. Because all of these ladies deserve their chance to shine and show Hollywood the power they hold.

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