‘Battle of the Sexes’: Current Volleys

Directors Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris opened the movie with a Fox logo from the 70s, just to ensure you steeped right in to the zeitgeist of that decade. Basing their movie off an incredible tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs in real life, the directors kept the sets entertaining and light. But underneath that lighter-vein smashes, the volleys ring all too uncomfortably relevant and contemporary. Ensuring that you scored the movie love-all were its lead actors. Emma Stone was fabulous as the feisty King, even as she superbly stumbled on-court and off it; Sarah Silverman was bristlingly good as the chain smoking pillar of strength, Gladys HeidmanSteve Carell‘s turn as the obnoxious Riggs was a highlight—uncontrollably brilliant and bursting with male arrogance, the actor was trained on court during the shoot by Lornie Kuhle, who was Riggs’s actual coach during the real-life face-off as well. Eric Christian Olsen, playing Kuhle in the movie, wore Kuhle’s outfit from 1973: such was the detailing during the production. But the movie’s biggest collateral message? Nothing from that era is irrelevant, and that’s not necessarily a good thing.  And oh yes, haircuts will never ever be the same again.

Images owned by the producers.