Thursday, 15 December 2011

The Help (2011)

Tom:
The Help,2011,USA
Director:Tate Taylor
Stars:Emma Stone, Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer
 "An aspiring author during the civil rights movement of the 1960's decides to write a book detailing the African-American maid's point of view on the white families for which they work, and the hardships they go through on a daily basis."

 "18 people were killed in Jackson that night. 10 white and 8 black. I don't think God has color in mind when he sets a tornado loose."

Weather you see "The Help" as a testament to the adversity that the African American people were forced to deal with in 20th century or just a sentimental feel good tale about the poor fighting back at the rich,The Help is a story that needed to be told. The Help is based on the novel of the same name by Kathryn Stockett, although the story is not based on factual events History has told us that these things happened, By these things I mean Rich White Americans treating African Americans like second class citizens and having their women work as house maids for less than minimum wage. Stockett's novel was released in 2009 and went on to become a worldwide phenomenon and just a mere two years later her story was Adapted for the big screen. Directed by a relatively newcomer Tate Taylor and featuring a highly impressive female ensemble cast led by Emma Stone,Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer,The Help is a film that feature  both  its upbeat and comedic moments but also depicts the struggles that these women faced, The Help handles all these elements well and creates an emotional,inspiring and thought provoking  cinematic experience.

The story revolves around young well off White girl named Skeeter (Played By Emma Stone),who seemingly everyday witnesses the tough predicaments that are forced upon African American maids, looking to secure a book deal in New York, Skeeter comes up with the idea of interviewing the maids and hearing their stories, This is heavily frowned upon so Skeeter does in it secret and with the help of two willing maids Skeeter intends to get their story out and make the rich realize the pain they cause.

I’m not much of a reader and have never read the novel so I can’t comment on the films loyalty to its source material but the story in which the film creates is very well done, It may be a cliché but we see the bitterness and harshness of the rich population and the way in which they treat the African Americans which is barely human as they go to great lengths to make them feel small such as not letting them use the same bathrooms as them and claiming they have different diseases. The Help goes all the way in depicting the cruelness and doesn’t seem to try and escape it for something more crowd pleasing Although the film does have its feel good and tear jerking moments they aren’t substituted in intentionally. The film features a uplifting tone as the characters of Skeeter and Abilene become somewhat heroic. The film is also beautifully photographed with great scenery and cinematography.

The cast is terrific in this film,Emma Stone once again gives another terrific performance as Skeeter, Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer give Oscar Worthy supporting roles, Jessica Chastain is great as is Bryce Dallas Howard as the character the audience is supposed to hate.

The Help is a very well made and great film, terrific performances and an emotionally gripping storyline make this one hard to miss. Although it may have a tedious length at 146 minutes long i definitely think it’s worth your time.

Tom: 3.5/4

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