MONA LISA SMILE

2003

8/10

 

 

DIRECTOR: Mike Newell

May Contain Spoilers!

If Cosmo did feminist 1950’s thesis’, then this is what it would ultimately look like. That’s not a bad thing, as this film, touching on the finishing schools of the 1950’s, is actually quite engaging, cast by a who’s who of female talent, in most cases, of the 2000’s.

We follow Julia Robert’s, who is an art teacher as she teaches her class at an all girls college. The girls are smart, well read but are ultimately there to find and marry the best, and by best, wealthiest husbands possible. But Robert’s wants more than that for her girls, who initially turn on her for her efforts, but one by one, come around though not in ways that we might expect or necessarily want. There’s no outright happy endings here.

This is a reasonably good take on the subject of feminism in the sence of empowerment whilst railing against the view that to be so empowered means being selfish and doing so without men. The message is clear that equality is just that, and that the feminist movement, like all movements such as this, take an equally narrow-minded view as the one which is being fought.

Everyone comes away from this film differently but it is satisfying and well told. The acting is decent enough, though its gentle and conservative tone does prevent any real high key acting, leaving the sub text to tell alot of the story, which I liked.

Certainly a well conceived idea, well filmed and presented.

 

 

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