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RBG (2018)

December 29, 2020 Logo Netflix Logo Tmdb Logo IMDb Logo Rotten Tomatoes Logo Metacritic Logo

Ruth Bader Ginsburg entered the world in an utterly unassuming way. Nothing about her early childhood would indicate just how much she would change the lives of American women and inspire women around the globe. RBG is the story of the woman who became known as Notorious RBG and gained a rock star level following in her 80s.

black and white photo of a woman standing at an outdoor podium
Image Courtesy of TMDb

RBG follows the life and early cases that set Ruth Bader Ginsburg, from her childhood in Brooklyn, New York to her rise as a well-respected professor at Rutgers Law School and her eventual appointment to the Supreme Court of the United States. Along the way, Bader Ginsburg developed a reputation for being a champion for equality. 

Coming up at the beginning of the Women’s Liberation Movement, Bader Ginsburg’s keen mind latched on to the principals of equality, heavily influenced by her time doing research at Lund University in Sweden. Despite being a consistent voice for equality, Bader Ginsburg still experienced a great deal of prejudice in her own career path. And still she persisted.

Seven men and two woman sitting and standing around a table with law books on it
Image Courtesy of TMDb

In RBG, Bader Ginsburg credits much of her career success to her relationship with her husband, Martin Ginsburg.  They met while in law school and Martin immediately realized what an exceptional mind the petite yet feisty Ruth had. Once married, Martin had no problem building his career around his wife’s, including moving from New York to Washington so Bader Ginsburg could serve on the D.C. circuit court. From there, Bader Ginsburg’s path to the Supreme Court was cleared and propelled by Martin’s campaigning to the powers that be for recognition of her extraordinary mind and talents.

RBG is one part rock-star bio-pic and one part love story and one part hand book to resistance. It is no wonder that in an era when young people are looking for role models and guides on the path to revolution Ruth Bader Ginsburg has re-emerged as the voice of a generation. 

Her current popularity boom came out of a perfect storm. When Justice O’Connor retired from the bench she left Bader Ginsburg as the only female voice in the Supreme Court. Always one to speak her mind, Bader Ginsburg began writing fiery dissents and speaking out against discrimination and injustice, not only through these dissents but through other platforms, as well. People began to take notice of these contrary opinions and led to a rush of social media memes and posts, including the meme that compared this tiny jurist to rapper The Notorious B.I.G. These memes became a book and the book created a legend.

An elderly woman in a judges cloak standing in an office
Image Courtesy of TMDb

Bader Ginsburg eventually embraced the moniker, Notorious RBG and reportedly got a kick out of the pop culture notoriety she was garnering. She became a popular lecturer in universities and her likeness popped up in all sorts of movies, sitcoms and sketch comedy shows.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a fascinating person who dedicated her life and career to the struggle for equality. At times she was a polarizing person but no one could dispute her dedication to the law and the constitution. She served until her last breath, leaving a legacy of strength, courage and justice. RBG does a beautiful job of telling her story in her own words and in the words of those who loved and respected her the most.

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