Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Help - Review

Who's in it? 

What's it about?  

The Help is based on a best selling novel (5 million sold) by Kathryn Stockett. Telling the story of an aspirational author back in the civil rights movement of Jackson Mississippi in the 1960's. Skeeter (Stone) collated the stories of the Help, their tales, good and bad of how they were treated. Showing the  sad realisation that even though these black women loved and  raised the rich white children of the south those children still turned into their parents, still turned into their masters. 

Because it was the premiere both Tate Taylor & Octavia Spencer were present to say a few words (Lucky they spoke as we never would have spotted them – Oi, Savoy get some lights!)

Who said that?

Tate told us that, at times, filming they forgot that there was a big production company behind them as they’re such good friends. He & Octavia have lived together in the past, he was sure to mention that her character Minnie’s prowess at cooking was ‘Fiction, fiction, fiction’. She piped up to say ‘Well I know good food & I had some good crack chicken in Dublin tonight!’ Shameless, hilarious plug for CrackBird right there. Octavia dedicated the film to her Grandmother and her mother and her mother before her. Having grown up in Jackson, this dedication was heartfelt and it showed.

Any Good?

Having read and loved this book two years ago I was nervous going in. It doesn’t always go so well but I need not have worried.

Emma Stone plays the part of Skeeter perfectly and Bryce Dallas Howard, the sour faced, elitist racist Hilly. But the real stars of the movie are the eponymous Help. Both Abeline and Minnie and their army of friends and sisters if not by blood than by circumstance steal the show. They are funny, engaging and completely believable in their roles.

You’re literally swept up in a story of racist hatred and ignorance fought valiantly with true friendship and unbelievable courage. Each relationship is shown so impressively that you truly feel a part of the tale.

This is an epic depiction, beautifully and engagingly told and is the first time I can, hand on heart; say that they've done the book justice. Critics have claimed that it hasn’t done the women of the time justice, however, that it is a 'Barbie band aid on the wounds of the past'. Folks, this is a movie, not a Government announcement. There is nothing or no one that could ever make up for the atrocities of the Deep South or the pain and heartache that has overshadowed generations and that’s coming from an average Irish white girl in 2011. A world away.  This movie can, however, lift your spirits; it can show you that in the darkest of times that courage and friendship can prevail. And who doesn’t need to hear that?

It’s a long one at 136 minutes but that has meant that almost nothing has been left out. Thankfully.

If you’re in the market for heart rendering sadness, uncontrollable laughter and a story that will resonate with you long after the lights have come up; you've got to see The Help.



S said...

I actually haven't read this yet, which is shameful. I like Emma Stone & Bryce Dallas Howard, so I think I'll read the book first & then contemplate seeing it when it comes up on the sky movie office yokimibob (actual name).

Unknown said...
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LoCo said...

Oh Sue thanks for this review. This is one of my favourite books in a long time. Really wasnt going to see the film encase the ruined it. It sounds like they did I good enough job.

Sue Jordan said...

Thanks a mill LoCo, delighted you're reading x (my blog I mean, not in general :P)