Friday, January 21, 2011

Movie Review: The Other Woman

I'm not much of a movie buff.  Actually... I have seen very few movies in the whole scheme of things.  It seems there is always someone around me quoting some sort of movie that I haven't seen! Irritating!  So, one of the things I have been wanting to do with some of my extra time these days is watch a few flicks here and there.

So, when Brandon fell asleep while I was doing dinner dishes around 10pm last night (we eat late...) I decided to let the Mr. sleep and see what I could find OnDemand (other than Mickey Mouse Clubhouse! HA!) This proved to be one of the main contributing factors as to why I don't watch movies.  They're TOO much commitment!!!! With TV I can change the channel at any time... I didn't pay anything additional for it and I can even watch two or three shows at the same time! I can never make a decision about which movie to watch, etc. Oh geeze, sounds pathetic! 

Anyway, after my SIL said that Salt was pretty terrible (and she loves most movies) I decided to go with The Other Woman.  I did see Black Swan with Natalie Portman a few weeks ago, so I thought I'd indulge in another of her films.

In a nutshell, this movie is about a mistress (Natalie Portman) who becomes pregnant and then quickly becomes the new wife of her lover and step-mother to his 8 year old son.  The ex-wife (Lisa Kudrow) proves to be the most difficult ex-wife portrayal I have ever seen in a movie!  Of course, Portman is playing a "home wrecker" but that aspect isn't really highlighted in the movie so it just makes Kudrow's character seem even more harsh and nasty.  Portman has a difficult time getting along and adjusting to her "high maintenance" step-son and the loss of her newborn daughter certainly makes that ten times more difficult.  So, essentially this movie is about a woman who, in eighteen months or so, is supposed to have become a mistress/home wrecker, mother, step-mother, wife and parent who has just lost a baby.  WHEW! 

I didn't quite know what I was in for!  I was bawling like a baby by 40 minutes into the movie, that is for sure.  Thankfully, I appreciate movies like this.  I kind of have my own philosophy that in order to love to the fullest you have to know and experience tragedy of some sort to the fullest.  Not necessarily death, but in order to feel and understand one extreme, you must have known the other.  Does that make sense?  I am not at all an expert movie critic or whatever, but I do appreciate some real and raw emotions about real life situations that happen and don't always end with the white picket fence.  This one actually doesn't end on a completely downer note, but watching two hours worth of a mother struggling to cope with the loss of her baby girl is pretty treacherous, in my opinion!

One aspect of this movie that I really liked was how it brought to the surface the issue of SIDS, infant and child death and also miscarriage.  I think this is a topic that is too often shoved under the rug and I was pleased to see a movie that tackled it head on.  There is a particular scene in the movie that I remember cringing at because Portman compares her daughters loss to a miscarriage saying that her baby was actually a baby, not a fetus and that her loss MUST have been much greater.  Now, I'm not here to get into a religious, political or philosophical debate... But, I know of women who have had miscarriages and I know that their loss, in their minds, is no different than the loss of a child. Who are we to judge one person's loss over another... anyway? So I was pleased to see that scene play out also.

I wasn't too impressed with the acting, especially by Kudrow but I'm just not really a fan of hers ever.  Portman was okay, but a lot of the lines seemed forced and I feel like it could have been done better by someone else...not sure who.  I've never seen the actor who plays the dad before but I didn't fall in love with him either! HA!

The only other movie I can compare this to is P.S. I Love You which I also bawled through and loved. So, if you hated that movie, definitely skip this one.  If you're one that just watches a movie to "feel good" then also skip this one. Anyway, didn't mean to be a downer, I just have been thinking about this movie since I watched it last night and I figured it was a good blog post... Well, at least to get it off my chest!!!


Courtney said...

Thanks for the recap of the movie because I will definitely NOT watch it knowing what happens. A movie with a baby dying? And it is a little girl? SIDS? Yeah, nooo. With a four month old I already worry about, this is NOT the movie for me right now. Honestly, thank you. I know myself well enough to know if I watched it right now - it would NOT be a good thing!

Jen S. said...

WOW! Thanks for the scoop on this movie! I'm sure I would've been crying my eyes out.
I have such a problem watching movies, that I rarely watch them anymore. It seems no matter what, I always end up falling asleep (when we watch them at home). I run around like a crazy woman during the day, then when it's time to relax on the couch and watch a movie at night, I go out like a light! It drives Steve and Jeven nuts!
PS--we recently saw Little Fockers, and The Dilemma at the theater and I wasn't too impressed with either.
Hope you have a great weekend :)

Chelle said...

Thanks for the recap! I'm putting this on the "definitely do not watch" list. I don't do infidelity. And I don't do baby deaths. I think I'll pop in "The Girl who Kicked Over the Hornet's Nest" instead! I appreciate you watching this for me, though!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, if it has SIDS in it, I'm not watching it until Ami is older. No way! But, P.S. I Love You was fabulous, and I cried like crazy too!