Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|In Her Shoes|
Actors: Candice Azzara, Francine Beers, Alan Blumenfeld, Carlease Burke, Toni Collette
Genres: Comedy, Drama
Studio: Tcfhe Release Date: 09/23/2008
Walk a mile In Her Shoes.
L. Quido | Tampa, FL United States | 10/23/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
""In Her Shoes", the book, was decent chick lit; a sophomore effort by author Jennifer Weiner. Of note is that Weiner's books will no doubt get a fresh breath in sales after a ton of American women openly weep for this movie! I'm not sure how the studio (Fox) got Curtis Hanson to direct the film. Hanson, who's scored big with "L.A. Confidential", "Wonder Boys" and "8 Mile" seems an unlikely choice, but it is he who wisely emphasizes what is real about the film; the relationships, sibling rivalry, difficulty for a family to deal with a member who is outwardly normal, but who suffers from a psychological trauma; generation gaps and the expectations for people to be what they look like, and not who they really are.
Hanson beefed up his chances for more that just fleeting commercial success by securing Toni Collette (Muriel's Wedding, About a Boy) for the really central role in the film, and surrounding her with Diaz, MacLaine, and a solid cast of performers in lesser roles. (This is not to take anything away from Mark Feurstein, who plays Simon. As always he exudes charm and vulnerability in his roles that makes him a favorite of nearly every woman who sees him on the screen).
Hanson takes Collette, as Rose, from disgust at having to deal with messy, drunken, inconsiderate sister Maggie (Diaz) when all she really wants to do is focus on a new love affair, to angry lashing out when Maggie betrays her. He allows her to show the sense of loss she has when she doesn't know what happened to Maggie, self-discovery when she gets away from being a workaholic lawyer, sweet charm when she discovers love under her nose and begins to enjoy it, to self-loathing. And back again! He allows us to see Diaz as someone at her worst - uncontrollable, inconsiderate, a woman chock-full of destructive behaviors who slowly, slowly begins to find herself when faced with a woman who won't just give her what she wants so she'll go away. Diaz is at once her most beautiful and her most cheap and tawdry in this role. MacLaine, as Ella, a caricature of every character she's played in the last 10 years, has the dubious distinction of making Maggie decide to get real and have a real life, crazy as it seems, in a Florida senior citizen community.
In the journey of self-discovery that is Rose's and Maggie's, at the same time, but in different states, Hanson fills us with the longing they both have, and the need they have to be together. For all their opposite traits, for all their mistakes, Rose and Maggie, above all, are two sisters whose lives are so entwined, they cannot be torn apart.
In the quintessential scene from the film, where MacLaine, (who has been shut out from the girls' lives because she interfered too often with their mother, her own mentally unbalanced daughter) takes out a photo album, the two reminisce about the "best day" with their mom. Two days before her death she withdrew them from school, took them to Manhattan, and attempted to sell her fudge to department stores ala Mrs. Field's cookies. Spurned, she bought Rose a Nancy Drew book and Maggie a puppy. She returned home to her husband, who was frantic with worry....he has closely guarded the girls, since she is so unstable, and he feels she needs to be hospitalized. (Manic depressive? We learn she has not been taking her meds). It is remarkable to see Maggie (Diaz) learn for the first time what that day really meant; that it caused their mother to commit suicide (Maggie thought it was a car accident) and that from that day forward, Rose protected and sheltered her from the ugliness of what their mother had done and why. It's a powerful scene, made more powerful by the information as elicited by Ella, over the old photos.
There are more well-nuanced scenes in this film, and there are also places where it attempts to play too much on your emotions, such as Maggie's insistence at picking out Rose's wedding dress.
In her shoes, of course, is metaphoric for the same shoe size that both the sisters wear, the incongruity of a closet-full of beautiful designer shoes purchased by Rose, and unworn...that Maggie dips into and takes whenever she feels like it. You never really know what life is like for a sister or a friend until you've walked in her shoes.
All in all, Hanson does a remarkable job with the material, Collette is spectacular, Diaz shines, and the film has both power and light touches that will make it memorable for women from all walks of life. Men? I daresay the handful of men that see it will like it, but most should wait and watch the DVD as a favor to their significant others!
Your Heart is in My Heart
MICHAEL ACUNA | Southern California United States | 10/28/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Cameron Diaz is always the brightest, prettiest, most popular girl in the room. She's the girl all the guys love and the women envy. She can throw down shots of tequila with the guys on the one hand and go shoe shopping with her girls on the other. So far in her career, she's played the live-wire, the over-achiever, the most elegantly dressed...the sexiest, friendliest, the most dazzling.
Not so in Curtis Hanson's (the sublime "LA Confidential") "In her Shoes." Diaz's Maggie Feller is a forlorn thief and drunk and more to the point a loser. Diaz's incandescent beauty is even dulled here: she's all dolled up, yes but underneath it all she is tragically sad.
I've always believed that the bond between siblings is the strongest bond in anyone's life and Maggie's bond with her older sister Rose (the terrific Toni Collette) is the backbone of this story: they hate each other, they love each other and they can't live with or without one another. Rose and Maggie have fought side-by-side on the battlefield of family deception and misunderstanding. They are comrades.
Director Hanson's movies always reek of the aroma of well observed life and relationships and "In Her Shoes" is no exception to this rule. But, in this case you can also marvel at Cameron Diaz's transformation into an important and serious actress of the first order.
A 'chick flick' with a high-heeled heart
Clare Quilty | a little pad in hawaii | 10/08/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Not far into "In Her Shoes," Rose, played by Toni Collette, tells her sister, "You ruin everything!"
She's right, too.
Maggie, played by Cameron Diaz, is a party girl pushing 30 who's unemployed but works full time making messes. Sort of a Holly Go-Not-So-Lightly, she ruins borrowed clothes, parks in tow-away zones, is far better at consuming liquor than holding it and has a bad tendency to cozy up to the wrong guys.
Lawyer Rose, on the other hand, has her act together but isn't much better off. Lonely and scrunched up, she reads romance novels through stark glasses and has a smile that's a little disconcerting. When she finds herself in bed with a co-worker, she sneaks a snapshot of him just to preserve a rare moment.
Obviously, the sisters are both going through kind of a sad phase and when they have to move in together, they mix like bleach and ammonia. Their toxic conflict, however, nudges them in good directions.
Director Curtis Hanson doesn't rush the story -- one thing happens, then the next -- but it's surprisingly enjoyable to watch as Rose and Maggie eventually try to fix themselves. It could've been slow going, or corny, but it isn't. The writing (by Susannah Grant, who adapted Jennifer Weiner's novel) is so natural, and the performances so assured, "Shoes" is easy to settle into. Diaz convincingly inverts her bubbly persona into something with dimensions far beyond "Charlie's Angels," while Collette is a refreshingly sympathetic grouch. And though they may not look anything at all like siblings, they do a fine job of acting like them.
Also good is Shirley McLaine as the sisters' grandmother. She has played quite a few stern, disapproving women before (she's to chick flicks what Bruce Willis is to movies for guys who like movies), but here she very nicely downplays her usual volatility.
At just over two hours, the film might strike some as a bit long, and I'm usually the first to complain about excessive length, but in thinking back about it afterward, it's hard to come up with anything that should've been cut.
Smarter and more heartfelt than the previews suggest, "Shoes" is a tearjerker that earns its sniffles.
Candypantz | NY, NY United States | 10/07/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This film really surprised me. I expected it to be a bit of fun, a la Bridget Jones, and while it was very funny it was also very smart with a beautifully told story.
The film is about two sisters, with nothing in common but their shoe size, unexpectedly break out of the shallow stereotypes they have of themselves and of each other.
Cameron Diaz and Toni Colette are amazing in the film. And although Diaz tends to be cast as the beautiful ditz and Colette the geeky-oddball, neither actress plays to the sterotype. Colette, as the the older sister- Rose, struggles between her role as 'the one who keeps it all together' and her desire for passion & a more carefree life. While Diaz, as the selfish & self-centered younger sister, Maggie, surprises everyone and herself, when she discovers she has something to offer the world.
This film is guy friendly."