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Author Topic: Feminism is coming to theaters. Will you?
audra trower williams
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posted 23 October 2005 06:14 PM      Profile for audra trower williams   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Two new films, "North Country" and "The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio," have women giving Oscar-worthy performances and tackling compelling issues. But would these movies draw people to rush to the theaters?

In "North Country," which opened Friday, Charlize Theron plays a mine worker who summons the courage to file America's first class-action sexual harassment suit in the late 1980s. "Prize Winner," which is scheduled to open in the midstate this week, stars Julianne Moore as a 1950s housewife who keeps her family afloat winning money from jingo contests.


Full story


From: And I'm a look you in the eye for every bar of the chorus | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
steffie
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posted 23 October 2005 06:19 PM      Profile for steffie     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Do they mean "jingle contests"?

I would definitely see these movies. Both Theron and Moore are ultracompelling IMO.


From: What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow / Out of this stony rubbish? | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Paul Gross
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posted 23 October 2005 09:18 PM      Profile for Paul Gross   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by steffie:
Do they mean "jingle contests"?

Yes: http://wwww.gofishpictures.com/prizewinner/synopsis.html

[ 23 October 2005: Message edited by: Paul Gross ]


From: central Centretown in central Canada | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
kuri
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posted 23 October 2005 09:25 PM      Profile for kuri   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I just read a review of North Country that labelled it as "Oprah feminism" but was fairly positive nonetheless. I thought Theron was excellent in Monster.
From: an employer more progressive than rabble.ca | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
v michel
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posted 23 October 2005 11:35 PM      Profile for v michel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm excited about North Country. There's such a backlash against victims of sexual harassment in media and popular thought. I'm hoping a movie sympathetic to such a victim might sway popular opinion a little. (I am assuming Charlize Theron is sympathetic.) I'm excited to see something where a woman who claims sexual harassment is seen as a hero rather than as a ball-busting liar.
From: a protected valley in the middle of nothing | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
Train
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posted 24 October 2005 12:02 AM      Profile for Train     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by kurichina:
I just read a review of North Country that labelled it as "Oprah feminism" but was fairly positive nonetheless.

Judging by the trailer, I'm guessing this is accurate.

quote:
I thought Theron was excellent in Monster.

Me too.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged
Crippled_Newsie
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posted 24 October 2005 02:06 AM      Profile for Crippled_Newsie     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I've been intrigued by the trailer for North Country, mostly because it seems like the sort of movie that generally doesn't get made by major studios anymore. The ads definitely set up that Silkwood/Norma Rae vibe.

As a former film major who grew up on 70s movies, this picture seems like a happy throwback. I hope it does well, if only in the hope that guys like Sidney Lumet could do good work again.


From: It's all about the thumpa thumpa. | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
Train
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posted 24 October 2005 02:27 AM      Profile for Train     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
It's too Erin Brokovitch for me. We all know she's going to save the day and the music will swell and ... and ... and ... barf ....
From: Vancouver | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged
brebis noire
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posted 24 October 2005 09:13 AM      Profile for brebis noire     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm not crazy about Charlize Theron, especially when there's this gimmick on to take her ultra-glamourous face and dirty it up to make it look 'ugly' or 'ordinary'. I find it a tad insulting, but there you go. When I go to movies, my favourite actors are the talented relative unknowns or the known character actors. Such as the ones in Vera Drake.

In spite of Theron, I'd go see the movie.


From: Quebec | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
Mr. Magoo
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posted 24 October 2005 10:14 AM      Profile for Mr. Magoo   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
I'm not crazy about Charlize Theron, especially when there's this gimmick on to take her ultra-glamourous face and dirty it up to make it look 'ugly' or 'ordinary'.

I didn't see the movie, but I was amused when one critic asked "are we out of ugly people now??"

Good point. Somewhere there's a "plain" actor who probably would have killed for the role, but hey, with a tonne of latex and a few hours in the chair every day, it's possible to take a beautiful person and ugly them, I guess.


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audra trower williams
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posted 24 October 2005 10:34 AM      Profile for audra trower williams   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
A movie critic friend of mine said that he thought they maybe cast Theron in the role, because if it was more of a "plain" actor, everyone would have been just like "Oh as IF anyone would sexually harass HER."

Gah.


From: And I'm a look you in the eye for every bar of the chorus | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
bittersweet
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posted 24 October 2005 01:40 PM      Profile for bittersweet     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Saw "North Country", found it was about the message more than the characters, so for me it's instantly forgettable. No doubt, some good scenes and performances, just not a great whole. Part of its message, at least according to just about every critic I've read is: "The lead actress successfully supressed her beauty. Isn't that amazing?!" Aren't most critics just so boring? Pauline Kael, how I miss you.

I think it must be frustrating in the extreme for Theron to constantly receive accolades for successfully supressing her beauty. The beautiful and the ugly share the same curse: their superficial visual aspects are so distracting they're hard to see beyond--beauty especially in N. American culture (is ugly noticed here any more or less than elsewhere?). I think Theron's career is interesting to watch--it's its own little drama. For example, I'm curious why she's in "Aeonflux", a truly moronic movie where she looks like a 14 year-old boy's fantasy a la Catwoman, but maybe it's a contract thing.

Other things interesting to me: we do not hear (at least as much) statements like "Jude Law managed to supress his beauty and really made us believe him in this role." And although beautiful and talented actresses (that phrase!) in other countries, like Deneuve, Binoche, and my fave, Irene Jacob (I like French actresses so my sample's skewed), are admired for their looks, I don't think there's the same hoopla about them supressing their beauty when they pull off great performances.

Edited to add: the trailer for "Prize Winner" is so nauseatingly treacly! But it's hard to trust trailers. I can't see Julianne Moore in treacle, but who knows.

[ 24 October 2005: Message edited by: bittersweet ]


From: land of the midnight lotus | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
belva
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posted 24 October 2005 03:00 PM      Profile for belva     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
My lover & I are going to see NORTH COUNTRY on Friday night . . . I'm curious . . . I'll post something of my response after we see it.
From: bliss | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
jas
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posted 26 October 2005 01:31 AM      Profile for jas     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The main thing that struck me was why this film even exists right now. Unless they're testing cultural waters after Michael Moore's successes. It just seems like such an ugly-duckling subject for current-day Hollywood. I think Theron is really good in it. It's Woody Harrelson's role that Oprah-fies it, if anything. By and large, though, they don't pretty-up anything here.

The men get a bit caricatured in it, but I'm not sure that it's necessarily inaccurate, when we consider the time and place. My companion commented that it serves as a shocking reminder of the kinds of working environments many women faced not too long ago, before sexual harassment laws and other protections.


From: the world we want | Registered: Jun 2005  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 26 October 2005 08:13 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by audra trower williams:
A movie critic friend of mine said that he thought they maybe cast Theron in the role, because if it was more of a "plain" actor, everyone would have been just like "Oh as IF anyone would sexually harass HER."

Gah.


I'm betting your movie critic friend is probably right. That is, that the producers of the movie would think that way, and that a lot of people in the audience would as well.

By the way, I'm trying to figure out how this is "ugly":

[ 26 October 2005: Message edited by: Michelle ]


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
brebis noire
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posted 26 October 2005 09:10 AM      Profile for brebis noire     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Michelle:

By the way, I'm trying to figure out how this is "ugly":

[ 26 October 2005: Message edited by: Michelle ]



I'll give it a try:
1.no makeup
2.no big hair - actually no hair at all!!(she looks sovietesque)
3.picture is cut off above the boobs, thus..well, you know.


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eastcoast
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posted 26 October 2005 08:22 PM      Profile for eastcoast     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'll check both of them out!

I love pro-woman films! I always leave the theater feeling like Wonder Woman!


From: San Francisco | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged
kuri
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posted 14 November 2005 05:39 PM      Profile for kuri   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I saw North Country this weekend. I thought it was really good, although the supporting characters (I mean those with only a few lines, not the main cast supporting actors) could have been a little more nuanced.

And I really felt the music was poorly chosen. The songs rarely related to the scenes of the movie. It was really as if the producers thought, "Well, it's set in Minnesota and Bob Dylan's from Minnesota, so let's just put a bunch of random Bob Dylan songs throughout without any reference to the mood of the scenes."

But it was a really good film overall. Frances McDormand was particularly excellent.


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MasterDebator
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posted 15 November 2005 02:35 AM      Profile for MasterDebator        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
My husband and I saw North Country this weekend, and we were favourably impressed by an American film that dared to show working class people, even workinc class women, asserting themselves.

The circumstances of the characters, humble homes, some frankly shabby, older model cars and trucks, a social life revolving around taverns and hockey rinks looked awfully like a very large stretch of Canada, from Newfoundland to Northern BC.

The pincipal character played by Theron faces not only sex discrimination and harassment but an equal oppression based on class, a point highlighted by the fact that the company is represented by a woman lawyer.

It's a puzzle to me, maybe someone else has answers, but over the past thirty or so years women have made a lot of progress entering such professions as law, medicine, and dentistry. Yet into such trades as electricity, plumbing, mechanics, and carpentry they have made barely a dent. So for working class women, it's still clerical or service work, or possibly teaching and nursing. Oh, and the police force.

Overall I thought it was a good movie, and most of all I enjoyed the gritty realism.

[ 15 November 2005: Message edited by: MasterDebator ]


From: Goose Country Road, Prince George, BC | Registered: Mar 2005  |  IP: Logged
kuri
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posted 15 November 2005 10:27 AM      Profile for kuri   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by MasterDebator:
the company is represented by a woman lawyer.

**** SPOILER ALERT **** STOP READING IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE MOVIE AND DON'T WANT TO KNOW ANY PLOT DETAILS!! ****
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And she was an interesting character, now wasn't she? It was interesting, that scene where she was discussing options with the company exec and he shut her down, so sure his strategy was better than her idea to settle. I got the feeling that she knew the so-called "character witness" was going to backfire. And it certainly did, not least because of the powerful effect of the father's rage for his daughter. (His 180 degree turn seemed a little too contrived for me, though, I got to say.)


From: an employer more progressive than rabble.ca | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged

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