Chick Flicks: “The Women”

My husband scored himself a “Get Out of Jail Free” card Saturday night by taking me to see “The Women.” The movie is an updated version of the 1939 George Cukor-directed film, which was an adaptation of the play by Clare Boothe Luce.

“The Women” follows Mary Haines (Meg Ryan), a suburban wife, mother and clothing designer who discovers her husband is cheating on her right around the time that everything else in her life starts to fall apart as well. But at least she still has her friends — played by Annette Bening, Debra Messing and Jada Pinkett Smith. Despite its all-star cast, “The Women” has received bad reviews, but I was determined to give it chance.

Just in case my husband wasn’t excited enough about the movie, the guy at the ticket counter said things like, “We do crazy things for love,” and informs my hubby that there is not a single male in the film. “All of the extras are women,” he said, “and even the dog is a girl.”

Turns out the ticket counter dude was right and, unfortunately, so was L.A. Times movie critic Kenneth Turan who said that “The Women” tries too hard to be all things for all women, which is funny since the crux of the movie is about the dangers of trying to please everyone. The movie starts slow. Very slow. And when it picks up it spins us into a whirlwind of issues from how to juggle a career with family to rebuilding trust in a relationship to unattainable beauty ideals in magazines. Manicures and motherhood? Check. Lesbianism and lingerie? Check.

My husband said it best when he called “The Women” a poor woman’s “Sex and the City” (no, I didn’t make him go see that too). But I must say that despite all this there were some laugh-out-loud scenes, charming girlfriend moments and adorable, though completely unrealistic, “You Go Girl” conclusions that kept me from wanting my money back. “The Women” is also the inspiration of my next column for Velocity Weekly, which I’ll tell you more about next week.

If you saw “The Women” tell me what you thought. Or if you saw the new Tyler Perry movie, “The Family That Preys,” which is next on my list of films to hit up, tell me what you thought of that (but no spoilers, please).

Also, click here to check out a video from the L.A. Times website that features “The Women” stars Bening and Eva Mendes (who plays the homewrecker) sharing their feelings on Gov. Sarah Palin.

4 Comments

  1. shucks. a girlfriend and i were really excited about seeing this movie together, but since it wasn’t open yet (about two weeks ago), we went to see “Vicky Cristina Barcelona.” it was excellent! beautiful scenes of Spain, a haute central character and a witty narrative that takes you into the minds of the characters.

    now that i read your review, i probably won’t see “The Women.”

    and btw, if you like to read reviews, i use http://www.rottentomatoes.com , which gives you a fresh or rotten rating based on dozens of other reviews that are compiled on the site.

  2. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t terrible. I think it’s a good girlfriend movie, but it could have been a lot better if it was more focused.

  3. you should go check out “Burn After Reading”. I thought it was hilarious and the characters were great!!!

  4. You can’t really compare “Sex and the City” to “The Women”. The “Sex and the City” movie was the follow up…season finale to a series. Having been one to not watch the series, I watch the movie and thought it was really good. “The Women” was a really good chick flick to see with a group of girlfriends that you share a long history. Could it have been better….sure, anything can be improved. I enjoyed both movies but not better that “A Family That Preys”.

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