Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Movie Review -- North Country

North Country is the based-on-a-true-story film about a single mother (Josey -- played by Charlize Theron) who gets work in a Northern Minnesota mine in order to care for her two children. She and the other female workers in the mine face extreme sexual harassment for entering an industry historically belonging to men. Josey is alone in not accepting the abuse and decides to fight back after being assaulted by one of her male co-workers. She takes the mine to court but finds that her accusations may not stand alone.

This was an enjoyable film, but not extraordinary. Theron delivers a fine performance (though nowhere near as amazing as her performance in 2003's Monster) as does Frances McDormand as Glory, Josey's friend in the mine. The most intriguing aspect of the movie was the complex fear that the other women faced in standing up to the abuse; for all of them except for Josey, the fear of losing their jobs or of facing further harassment is not worth fighting back. I wish that this had been further explored in the film, as opposed to focusing primarily on Josey's journey. Also interesting is Josey's family (played by the delightful Sissy Spacek and Richard Jenkins) and their initial refusal to stand by their daughter.

The movie is a bit sentamental at times, as might be easily expected given the content. However, it is a film worth seeing as the real-life story the movie is based on was a landmark decision that brought sexual harassment to the world's attention.

I give it three and a half stars.


Blogger zlatickogirl said...

I haven't seen this yet, but would like to..I think Charlize Theron is an amazing actress and agree with you that she really proved that in Monster!

8:14 AM  
Blogger TessaJ said...

I think it's worth seeing. I did tear up a bit toward the end. Charlize is brilliant, and I'm so glad that she's one actress who plays against type (it would be so easy for her to fall into the romantic-comedy, I'm-so-beautiful roles).

12:02 PM  

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