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*** Official MONA LISA SMILE Review Thread

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Zen Butler, Dec 29, 2003.

  1. Zen Butler

    Zen Butler Producer

    Jan 24, 2002
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    Southern, Ca
    Real Name:
    Zen K. Butler
    With all holiday shopping done on the 24th, a friend and I noticed this playing immediate. So her and I chose to see it.

    I'm not much of a Julia Roberts fan and was expecting pretty standard Julia smiling at the camera vehicle.

    The Movie:
    Set in early 1950, when Katherine Watson (from a more liberal west-coast) attends the stuffy Wesley(sp?) school on the east coast. She is an art teacher, single and obvious from the start a bit left of center in her views. Of course the stock conflicts ensue. Distrusting, uptight conservative board are spooked by her views and method of teaching. Also, a romance between, Robert's Watson and a fellow teacher just doesn't ring true.
    Aside from the generalities, it's a toned-down, less cutesy Robert's performance that partly carries the film. Robert's is so damn good in this film, you really see the struggle behind her eyes.
    All said, it's the extremely talented ensemble of young ladies that boost this film above average. A surprise performance from Kirsten Dunst as the snooty Betty. But it's Maggie Gyllenhaal, as a kind of free-spirited, promiscuous and lushy Giselle that steals the whole show.
    This is nothing new but one thing I never tire of is one of our most forgotten minorities, women. It never hurts to remind us of the matrimonial trappings and oppression that women here in America suffered and their slow rise to overcome. Don't think that this film only leans to this side of thinking. Stile's character offers some very solid counterpoint to Robert's views. So it's not as one-sided as one may think. Any person who was raised by a single mother and watched the struggle first hand may have a soft-spot for this movie and the few like it.
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    out of [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  2. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator

    Dec 9, 1998
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    This thread is now the Official Review Thread for "Mona Lisa Smile". Please post all HTF member reviews in this thread.

    Any other comments, links to other reviews, or discussion items will be deleted from this thread without warning!

    If you need to discuss those type of issues then I have designated an Official Discussion Thread.


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