The Women – a movie review
"The women " has a tagline that makes you think: "The new comedy about finding out what you really want". This is interesting in that I have a problem with nearly every word of it. Firstly the word "comedy" conjures up "humour" to your mind. "The Women" is not funny at all. There is not one scene that made me, laugh, giggle, chortle, smile or even smirk. Nothing at all was amusing in this film. Secondly within two minutes of watching the movie, I found out what I wanted: to leave the cinema as soon and as fast as possible. Sadly I didn't because I was determined to get this review and to do that, I should at least watch all of it. To me though, after the realisation that this film was utter tripe, I had to waste a further 146 minutes of my life finishing it.
A group of female friends rally around one of their own, when it transpires that one of their husband's is having an affair. Eva Mendes plays the mistress, Meg Ryan plays the women who's husband is having an affair and Annette Bening, Debra Messing and Jada Pinkett Smith tag along for the ride (Bette Midler also moans about life for 3 minutes).
I have attempted to not make "The Women" sound incredibly dull, for that is what it is. This film is a remake of its 1939 counterpart. Somehow whilst watching it, I can't help but wonder why anyone thought it a good idea to remake it. About 30 minutes into the movie you realise that it is a COMPETELY female cast. Yes they talk about men, but the only male to make it to the screen is that of a baby in the final scenes.
Whoever thought that casting an all female film was a good idea needs therapy. The characters are so painfully stereotypical it is as if the screenwriters watched one episode each of Desperate Housewives and Sex and the City and decided they knew about women. We have the fashion magazine editor, the gullible housewife, the baby manufacturing plant (played by Messing, of Will and Grace fame) and the lesbian. I care very little if this movie had an incredibly low budget and "starred" big names along with Bette Midler. I care very little that Mick Jagger (of Rolling Stones) fame is credited as being a producer. What sort of small amount of work do you have to do to get credited with a "producer" title. I cannot imagine Mick Jagger whilst watching this being made, thought it a good idea to continue. I would have heard one line of the wooden acting and jumped straight back into singing; happy in my mind that I got out before it sank too much.
Every single actress on screen fails almost in every scene. How is it possible that the likes of Annette Bening can be so very very bad? I realise that Meg Ryan is not (in my opinion) Oscar-worthy, but she does tend to make entertaining movies. How far she has come from "French Kiss" and "Sleepless in Seattle". Somehow as a member of the audience you want to offer them all the script to read one last time so that they can finally put some effort into their lines.
What could have started as an entertaining woman-scorned flick turned (very quickly) into a feminist rally. Every single male character described on screen is a complete bastard. To be fair, a small step back from feminism is present at the end of the piece but by that time, if you are male you are way beyond caring (because you've just suffered nearly two hours of man-hating abuse) and if you are female you are embarrassed that women like this actually exist in real life.
Is this simply an attempt to get women back in the theaters? I for one would hope not. I can only feel sorry for the poor individual who has been encouraged to take his (or her) girlfriend/boyfriend on a date to watch this. Save yourself the effort and grief: go and talk to anyone who knows the definition of "misandry" and "misogyny" and let them rant for two hours about it. I will promise you that you will be more entertained. In fact, if you are male then I suggest you offer your local man-hater a hammer and a few nails so that whilst being verbally assaulted for two hours, you give her / him the chance to physically abuse you also. I assure you that you will feel less pain having nails hammered through your testicles than watching this excuse for a film, (well maybe not).
How can you not love a movie starring Meg Ryan? Well quite easily really: put her amongst an all female cast. Her ditzy character loses its cuteness, her inability to act is painfully clear and despite being the most capable of the rest of the actors on screen, she still manages to make you check your watch every two minutes. This is the opposite of fun and the opposite of comedy.
A short time ago "The Women" was at risk of being shelved for some time. The studio should have shelved it permanently. Watch this film at your peril if you are a woman. For every man who has been encouraged to watch it, I can only suggest the following: don't. Don't ever! Think of it like Pandora's Box: you are tempted by curiosity, but DON'T BE! Only nasty things lay in waiting in the cinema that shows this
0.5 out of 5
(I cannot emphasise how bad this movie is).