I have one word for this movie: intense. Intense not in a bad way, but in a makes-your-heart-heavy-and-feel-despaired way. But it’s just not that. It made me laugh, it made me cry. But most of all it made me angry. Angry at society. Angry at the prevailing culture within this morally and ethically destitute world.
Taken from IMDb: ‘A look at the lives of the strong-willed women of the Weston family, whose paths have diverged until a family crisis brings them back to the Oklahoma house they grew up in, and to the dysfunctional woman who raised them.’
The dysfuntional woman in this context is Voilet Weston (Meryl Streep) and the movie revolves around her and her daughters Barbara (Julia Roberts), Ivy (Julianne Nicholson) and Karen (Juliette Lewis) and also Voilet’s sister Matie Fae (Margo Martindale) and all their respective family members.
When you mix alcoholism and drug addiction with lies, a lifetime of pain and desperation, and an awkward family reunion; it is meant to be a recipe for disaster.
Let me first just say this and get it out of the way that this movie not only has a stupendous cast, but some of the best performances by all the actors, flawless direction and cinematography.
Now about the story. Without spoiling anything for you let me just discuss a teeny tiny little thing with you. We all live in a society (I’m not just talking about American culture as shown in the movie but also people here is South Asia where I live), where people have started to take their parents for granted. The moment children grow up they start feeling suffocated by their parents and move away and abandon those two people who sacrificed each and every thing in their lives just to provide YOU with every humanly possible happiness in the world. No, I’m not saying that the kids are at fault all the time. Not just them but the parents also should be more respectable and considerate towards their children. Constant nagging, snobbing and disrespect is destined to throw families apart. And that’s what is depicted in this movie. Damaged mother-daughter, mother-son, husband-wife, boyfriend-girlfriend relationships.
This movie constantly broke my heart. But I must admit that by the end, it got extremely dark and surreal. —*Spoiler Zone Start*— The end disappointed me. I was hoping for some .. *sigh*.. light at the end of the tunnel. But I appreciate that they kept the story HONEST. Not every story is destined to have a fairytale ending. —*Spoiler Zone End*—
Best Thing About the Movie:
Marry me Meryl Streep. How perfect can you be? I laughed with you, I cried with you, I screamed with you. There was not one moment I didn’t sympathize with you. Why was everyone so mean with you? 😥 You have given the performance of a lifetime. Oscar Nomination well-deserved, and by the way you also deserved to win it.
Most Tear-Jerking Moment:
1. The Cowboy Boots Story:
The moment that Voilet started telling her daughters that story knew it in my heart that it’s going to have a tragic end. By the end tears were rushing down my face and I just wanted to hug Voilet and tell her everything’s gonna be alright, that no matter what kind of tortuous broken childhood she had I wanted to guarentee her that she won’t have to face humiliation and loneliness in the rest of her days ever again.
2. Frantically running in the fields:
How can your heart not go our to Voilet in that scene? What can drugs do to your fragile mind, how the endless years of pain and despair can rip all sense of hope from your existence. Bravo to Mr. John Wells for such amazing direction and bravo Madam Streep for giving such an amazing performance.
The Biggest What-The-Fudge Scene:
The. Most. Awkward. Funeral. Dinner. Scene. Ever. That whole sequence is covered in the span of 20 minutes and it’s the most exasperatingly exciting scene in the movie. Hufff.. That one is to die for! From playing the blame game to expressing secret confessions to verbally assaulting to actually physically attacking your mother just to stop her from taking drugs; MY GOD what a tense scene.
1. Beverly Weston: ““Life is very long.” TS Eliot. Not the first person to say it. Certainly not the first person to think it. But he’s given credit for it because he bothered to write it down. Now if you say it you have to say his name after it. “Life is very long.” TS Eliot. Absolutely goddamn right.”
2. Ivy Weston: “I can’t perpetuate these myths of family or sisterhood anymore. We’re just people, some of us accidentally connected by genetics, a random selection of cells.”
3. Bill Fordham: “You’re passionate but you’re hard. You’re a good, decent, funny, wonderful woman and I love you… but you’re A PAIN IN THE ASS!!”
Everyone can learn some lessons about relationships from this movie. I wholeheartedly suggest this movie to all daughters to watch this with their Mom. I know you love your mother more than anything in this world but some lessons must be recalled so that you may never make the mistakes other broken families have made in their lives.
Potahto Rating – 7.5 out of 10