Movie Review: “The Help”
Reviewed by Talia Bitter, 18
The Help is an incredible story portrayed by many talented individuals. It is a film that I thoroughly enjoyed. Written and directed by Tate Taylor, the film is based on a novel by Kathryn Stockett. The story portrays what life was like for blacks and whites in Mississippi during the Civil Rights movement. The film features actors Emma Stone, Viola Davis, Bryce Dallas Howard, Octavia Spencer, and Jessica Chastain.
I am a huge fan of Emma Stone and I was very impressed by her ability to act in a drama, especially after she has starred in light-hearted comedies like Superbad and Easy A. I was also impressed with all of the other actors for embracing their roles and identifying with the characters so well. Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer did fantastic jobs as black maids. Octavia Spencer had so much personality, and both women made the audience fall completely in love with them.
The story of The Help is powerful and inspiring. There were many times that I was brought to tears. The scenery was beautiful, the background music set the dramatic tone, and I loved how realistic the story was. In one scene, the police arrest an innocent maid for robbery and beat her down into their car. It was very graphic, horrifying, and heart wrenching. It really helped me understand just how badly African Americans were treated back then.
Although the film is primarily about the Civil Rights movement, it also explores the pressures of being a young white girl who does not fit into society. For example, the film follows the life of Celia Foote. She is a small-town girl who marries a wealthy man and tries desperately to fit in with the other women in her town. As hard as she tries, the women treat her terribly. In one scene, she goes to one of the women's houses to visit and they all hide on the floor as if no one is home. Of course, poor Celia can see that they are all there. The actresses, especially Bryce Dallas Howard, who plays Hilly Holbrook, do a wonderful job of portraying the arrogant, selfish, and entitled women in this town.
I loved this movie. At first, I was a little disappointed that there wasn't much of a love story involved with the plot. But as I thought about it, The Help doesn't need romance. I don't think I would change anything. It is absolutely perfect the way it is.
I give this movie five stars and I definitely recommend that everyone go see it.
Note: On February 26, Octavia Spencer won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in The Help. The Help was also nominated for Best Picture and has won several other awards and been nominated for many.
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