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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

North Country

This movie made me realize that men are actually scared of women. Well nothing personal against the guys out there but its what I perceived. I don’t think the guys are gonna take it too kindly but as I said before its nothing personal and its definitely not an attack or anything on their masculinity or anything, so please don’t get me wrong. North Country is based on the real life incident in the iron mines of north Minnesota, how women were sexually harassed by their male coworkers. The time is the early 1990’s and there is a worldwide crisis of jobs. It is at such times that women decide to come out from their houses and get work for themselves. The only place where the pay is good in north Minnesota is the iron mines but it is dominated by the men. Even though the pay is good, the work involves a lot of risk which is why the proportion of men to women working in the mines, even in the 1990’s is 30:1. Now why I said that men are scared coz this is the time that they felt or thought that the women were gonna take away their jobs, steal away their livelihood, the only one that they had in the neighborhood. But what they didn’t realize was that the women had equal rights to earn a living and fend for themselves. The movie revolves around the life of josie aimes played by charlize theron, a young mother of 2 kids who leaves her abusive husband and comes back to her home state and starts working in the iron mines. Her father has been a miner all his life and he doesn’t take it too kindly of his daughter’s working at the mines. This strains their relationship further, since their relationship is not a happy one. From her first day at her new work place, she notices that her male co workers aren’t too delighted to have them around and makes horrible vulgar jokes at their cost which amounts to sexual harassment. But it’s the men who run the show and the women workers cannot protest about their miserable working conditions. But josie decides she has had enough of their stupid jokes and sues the management of the mine for sexual harassment and as always happens, she wins. So that’s basically the story, but there were quite a few flaws in the movie according to me. For example josie’s life: if an abusive husband is not enough, with whom she has a daughter, she was sexually abused by one of her teachers at school and as a result of which she gave birth to a son; and now she’s sexually harassed at her work place. I mean it seemed that all the bad things happened to one person only. And the most important flaw was the lawsuit: how could she win it? I mean I know that lawyers are s’posed to be great talkers but how can you just talk your way to victory when you have no evidence, no proof on your side. The film however also explores the troubled relationship between a son and a mother (josie) and also between a daughter (josie) and a father. But I should say that theron’s performance disappointed me and she clearly did not deserve the oscar nomination for the best actress category. After all, my expectations from her was high after she portrayed the ‘monster’ aileen wuornos.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Mystic River

Oh God! This movie… what should I say… haunts me. I dunno whether ‘haunt’ is the right word or not, but boy after watching this movie, all I could hear was the background music of Mystic River, scored by clint eastwood and see the faces of sean penn and tim robbins. Hats off to them! It’s no wonder that both of them earned an oscar at the 2003 academy awards for the best actor and the best supporting actor category respectively. Mystic River is adapted from the novel with the same name written by dennis lehane and directed by clint eastwood. The movie begins with 3 friends jimmy, sean and dave playing hockey on the streets of boston. It’s evident that the three of them are really close friends but they move apart after a tragic incident. On that fateful day, dave was picked up by a ‘cop’ for destructing public property. This guy was no actual cop and dave was taken hostage where he was sexually abused. After 4 days in captivity, dave manages to escape but things are never normal for him. The three friends drift apart; thus a friendship which was supposed to be for a lifetime, turned into a mere acquaintance. Years pass by when another tragic and horrific incident reconnects these 3 friends: jimmy’s 19 year old daughter, Catherine is brutally murdered, dave is a suspect and sean played by kevin bacon is one of the investigating officers. Tim robbins my God! He was just mind blowing as the troubled dave: a sexually abused child, now a 30 something old father of a son who still has nightmares about that tragic incident that robbed him off his childhood and innocence, whose wife doesn’t know of his ugly past- he was just great. Sean penn as the father of the murdered teen, the local mob boss was good too, but he had a negative stint in his character, this brash punk attitude that made me dislike him. But the best part of the movie I must say has to be the ending, such an unexpected one, it just takes you by surprise. It’s as if someone grabs you from behind and you are scared, speechless shocked everything. And it is for this reason that clint eastwood is clint eastwood and which is why we were supplied with such gem of a movies like million dollar baby, letters from iwo jima, flags of our fathers and now gran torino. And when the movie ends, all you see, all u hear is dave’s face and the background score titled ‘Mystic River’. At least I did.