Mona is determined to win the Miss American Miss contest, even if it means cheating or concealing the fact that she has a daughter.
Genre: Feature Film-Comedy
Release Date: 2-SEP-2003
Media Type: DVD
Started out a bit rough and slow but really took off and you will love the ending and will be surprised with who directed this.
3 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
What people will go through to become the most beautiful
Daniel J. Hamlow | Narita, Japan | 07/10/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Beautiful, adj. 1. Having beauty; delighting the senses and mind. 5. The ideal of beauty.So says Webster, and given that, Mona Hibbard of Naperville, Illinois does not embody that quality on the inside. Mona has had a drive to be beautiful and from her pre-teen years, has worked hard, getting her teeth straightened, going to a grace school, and befriending Ruby, who has learned to sew from her grandmother. From watching beauty pageants on TV, she herself enters a beauty pageant and wins for best costume. The trouble is, her parents are far from supportive, and she herself shuts them out of her life. Her mother keeps saying she's getting aggravated from her behaviour, and even when Mona gets a consolation medal reading "participant," she merely says that she didn't get anything. On the other hand, the egocentric Mona's no angel either. She has a room with posters full of beauty pageant memorabilia, and a sign on the door reading "knock first" When her mother asks her if she wants some pizza, Mona refuses to answer because her mother didn't knock first.Years later, Ruby and Mona are firm friends. Ruby and her grandmother still help make costumes for Mona, who still has the same dream, and will do anything to get it. In one scene smacking of black humour and slapstick, she sabotages a rival's equipment when that girl steals Mona's routine and is lucky enough to go first. This has grave ramifications later on, which I won't reveal. However, when Mona discovers she's pregnant, it's bad news, because women who are mothers or legal guardians are disqualified from entering the Miss American Miss competition. But she's so desperate to prove herself beautiful, she has Ruby pose as the mother of her child, a girl named Vanessa, while she becomes her own child's aunt. This helps her win Miss Illinois, which makes her a contestant for Miss America Miss pageant. In the meantime, there are the expected public appearances to promote her. However, fate plays a cruel trick on Ruby, leaving Vanessa in Mona's care, something neither is chuffed about. Mona sees her own daughter as A) an inconvenience, and B) someone to take photos of her to mold her image as a caring, heroic, role model. But what makes a real role model? Mona's "campaign slogan" is "empowering America's youth for a brighter America." A pity she doesn't embody that ideal toward her own soccer-loving seven year old daughter.In Mallrats Joey Lauren Adams played the smarter advice-giving girlfriend to Claire Forlani. As Ruby, Adams is the hard-working, grounded, patient friend who works hard to help Mona reach her goal even to the extent of being the mother to Vanessa, and treating her like a real mother would, making this her best role since Chasing Amy. Hallie Kate Eisenberg (Vanessa) is quite the delight here as the very insightful girl who ends up being more mature and abler than her birth mother. Indeed, when she asks Mona how come she looks so much like her, it's more than just physical appearance, but more on personality. One only has to look at the way Mona's own mother treated her to see how Mona treats Vanessa, with lack of sympathy, support, and as somewhat of an inconvenience. Her other question to Mona, "where do I belong?" is something that Mona herself is struggling with, to belong somewhere. Adams and Eisenberg really make this movie worth it.Actress Sally Fields' feature film directorial debut was much panned by critics, and perhaps it's Minnie Driver's character, who isn't that likeable until the final twenty minutes or so of the movie. All the same, one is aggravated by her egotistical self-centered behaviour, while at the same time wanting her to not only grow up, as Ruby tells her in a moment of exasperation, but to be, in the words of Webster, to become beautiful."
A beautiful movie
Eileen Visconte | new york city | 12/30/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"When this movie was first released in theaters, I honestly did not have much of an intrest for viewing it. But recently I did end up watching "Beautiful", and I really enjoyed it. I think this movie is the type where even though it may not be excellent, it's still worth the time to watch. "Beautiful" is a movie about a young girl who always dreamed of winning the title of "Miss America Miss". For most of her life, she tried to create her own beauty and win beauty contest. As a young girl, she meets Joey Lauren Adams' character who designs Minnie's character's dresses. They become best friends, and keep on competing in beauty contest as Minnie's character grows older. I would add more to the story, but I don't want to give everything away. The ending really brings the movie together, and even though some scenes may seem cheesy, it still turns out to be a nice movie. "Beautiful" is one of those sweet, funny, and cute movies girls gotta watch with their girl friends. It will make you laugh and cry lol.. and just have an enjoyable time for about an hour and a half."
Eileen Visconte | 12/12/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I saw this movie with my friend, and it was a choice between this and a football movie. We saw this, and we left the theater almost crying because of how sweet the end was, both agreeing that Minnie Driver's charecter had been evil until the very end. Anybody who is a fan of chick-flicks, or movies with sweet endings has to see this!"
Cute Movie about (finally) coming of age.
G. E. Williams | California | 05/11/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"My wife (and our youngest) and I have enjoyed watching this cute film several times,(even though my wife was a pageant contestant all through her teens) this is a great film about self esteem, friendship, vanity, growing up and responsibility.
Minnie Driver is great as usual, and here we first learn of her considerable vocal talents (by the way her CD " Everything in My Pocket"is a great singer song-writer album) and then there is the adorable "Pepsi Girl" Hailey Kate Eisenberg, who is spot on as the world wise (but unknowing) daughter.
This isn't a great movie, but it is a pretty good one. If you are looking for a nice movie about finding your place in the world, you should enjoy "Beautiful".