May 8, 2010

Mona Lisa Smile, 2003

Mona Lisa Smile, 2003
Director: Mike Newell
Cast: Julia Roberts,Kirsten Dunst, Julia Stiles

Mona Lisa in short: A free-thinking art professor teaches conservative 50's Wellesley girls to question their traditional societal roles.

Stage: home cinema, TV selection on a rainy Thursday

Preps: seeing this movie every now and then gives me the creeps about the role of a woman half a century ago. It makes me appreciate what women have accomplished so far and equalizes the role play in my mind for both sexes :=)


Julia Roberts is an art professor with a unique (and for that time unnacceptable) way of thinking. And teaching. I must imagine it's a nightmare coming into your first class having all the students already read (and not just read, also self-tought) everything you wanted to teach them. Furthermore, Catherine (Julia) shines out of this system like a candle in the wind, with everyone trying to shut her down or make her uncomfortable and ready to leave, because she just doesn't fit.

Fitting into society is what this piece is all about. And making yourself aware of that role you are supposed to play in your life or life of the others, accepting or denying that. Is really a role of a woman something that can be defined? Furthermore, can it be defined through shirt pressing, housewif-ing, bearing children and be educated at the same time? The role seems to fit perfectly to some people, for others it may seem a burden.

Watching this movie will make you think about these things thoroughly. Watching, how a system can crack someone just for the sake of the argument, or make someone crawl, just because they don't think alike, is just devastating and so sad. However it was an important part of our society and in some cases or in some parts of the world, it still is alive. Sadly enough, I think most of the people choose to be sheep and follow the herd. For all individuals... well, life's a challenge, often prosecuted for their own thoughts and deep misunderstandings by the society.

My personal rating: 8,5 (extremely good in philosophical kind of way. I strongly recommend it).

Mona Lisa Smile on IMDB
Official sites

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