Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Women

I didn't think I'd like this movie, but I did. The Women, starring Meg Ryan, Annette Bening, Debra Messing and Jada Pinkett was a very nice surprise, in large part due to Annette Bening and a couple of great cameos by Candace Bergen, Carrie Fisher, and Debi Mazar. Eva Mendez was perfect for her role, as was Debra Messing, and if I hadn't gotten distracted by Meg Ryan's overblown hair and lips, I'd give it a solid five stars. :-) As it is, I give it four stars and a solid thumbs up.

A woman's three best friends find out that her husband is being unfaithful - do they tell her? Sure they do, but not before seeing for themselves that the poor schmuck never stood a chance against a hot tamale like Eva, the perfume girl at Saks. Guided by her mother's advice, Meg decides to let her husband have his little fling, knowing he'll get tired of his spicy and demanding chica pretty quickly. He does, and she thinks she's won, until she finds out the affair is still going on. This is a great story about the power of girlfriends, the power of women, and the power of forgiveness.

Wronged wife Meg Ryan copes with the breakup of her marriage with advice from her friends and her mother, and in the process is transformed from a messy haired mess, submerged in nameless Mom-dom, into what she always wanted to be all along. a chic, gorgeous fashion designer who wows the world with her first collection. (This is the only part of the script that bothered me. It was a bit much, just like Meg's hair and lips.) Anyway, this transformation doesn't happen overnight, and along the way, Annette Bening's character absolutely shines as the best friend, who, in a moment of career panic, agrees to publish the messy details of her best friend's divorce. The schmuck is a muckety-muck on Wall Street, you see, and well... sex sells.

The breakup between the best friends is even worse than the breakup of Meg's marriage. You see, the name of this movie is "The Women", and that's what the movie is all about (the breakup of Meg's marriage is basically a side plot). Annette begs for forgiveness, but Meg cuts her off, just like she has her husband. Annette continues to be a friend behind Meg's back by helping her adolescent daughter cope with her parent's impending divorce. They eventually (of course) get back to being best friends in a great scene where they fight, hug, fight some more, and then do some more hugging. Just like real women. :-)

Meanwhile, the poor schmuck of a husband is always in the wings (though we never meet him). Once he knew he was busted, he broke things off with Eva, and seems truly contrite. He's pining for his wife back, begging for a second chance to get to know the "new" Meg.

Ultimately, just like she gave her friend Annette Bening a second chance at friendship, Meg gives her husband a second chance in their marriage. They're two different people now and we, as viewers, are supposed to believe that this couple is going to live happily ever after, despite his infidelity. Meg is no longer the mousy little mom who was willing to put up with an affair, and her husband has learned that the grass isn't always greener on the other side of the fence.

'd say that the lesson of this movie was that we have to love ourselves before other people can love us. That if we love people, we forgive them, even if they've hurt us badly. Definitely a great chick flick movie (I enjoyed it much more than I did the last Sex In The City), and (shhh....don't tell anybody) but my husband actually enjoyed it, too.

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