Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Help

For my birthday a couple of girlfriends and I got sushi and went to see a movie. I originally wanted something funny because I like to laugh, I mean who doesn't? However we settled on The Help. While I am NOT a fan of Bryce Dallas Howard because I think she ruined Victoria in Eclipse, I went to the movie anyway after hearing what a great book it was.

There was a little girl in the movie played by twins who I guess was on the chunky side, blond and sweet faced, even though they mentioned that she was ugly, I didn't see it. The problem was that while this little blond haired baby might not have looked just like River, I saw River in her. I knew as soon as I saw that kid that she was going to be trouble for me.

In the beginning of the film, Aibileen sits in a chair holding baby Mae in her lap and May is rubbing the skin of Aibileens cheeks. It made me think how beautiful it must be to feel only love for someone without seeing the colour of their skin. I wonder if my baby girl will be able to do that. I can teach her everything under the sun about acceptance of others and loving someone for what's inside but she'll watch TV and see the lowest common denominator, see movies and have stupid friends like everyone. I just hope I find a way of saving both my kids from hating people just because they feel like they're supposed to. Annoyed by stupid people, I can deal with that but hating someone because of the way they were born, whatever that means, would piss me off to no end.

It was a good movie and probably an excellent book, that I will never read. It was too much for me. Although I'm not really sure why. I mean I knew there would clearly be racism, abuse, evil, degradation and police brutality. It was the 50s! There was just something about that little girl that got me. I know it's because of River but it annoys me a bit that I see a movie about the treatment of black maids in the 50s and a little white girl affected me the most. I guess that's the only part of the story I hadn't seen before. Aibileen was so kind and nurturing to her when her own mother was worthless as a parent and a person really. As she screamed at the window I found myself wondering what she's do with just her shitty mother to look out for her. My guess is that she'll turn into her mother which was the saddest possible outcome that I could see. It's never fun to see a cycle continuing.

As the credits rolled I wished I hadn't seen it but with some distance I'm glad I did. I mean I cried so hard that I couldn't see the credits but I think it's an important story to tell. People just need to know things like that happened, that people were treated that way. The only problem is that I don't think racicts would see a film like this and that's who needs to see it. I can't imagine being so dismissive and degrading to someone and I can be an insufferable bitch. If I ever heard one of my children refer to someone as "colored" I think I'd fly off the handle. I know it was a different time but I can't imagine my Grandmother would have tolerated it from her kids and they were raised during that time, and in Tennessee.

In the end Bryce Dallas Howard didn't ruin it for me. While she sucked hard at playing a vampire, she was much better as a snotty know-it-all bitch. Not sure what that says about her, but whatever. My favorite character was Constantine and I won't tell you who played her in case you haven't seen it yet because seeing her surprised me. I hadn't seen her in years and I loved her. Hella talented! Her eyes as the door was closed in her face were haunting.

I just don't think you can call yourself authentic if you can celebrate your surceases without acknowledging the suffering of others. It's always OK to hate someone. In the 50s it was black people. Now it's gays and everyone with dark skin who are shoved under the title "Mexican." I think it helps people feel better about themselves when they can look down on someone else. It's sad but it's just the way it is. To say otherwise would be sugarcoating things and that's a waste of time. I've known more than my fair share of Hillys in my life and as I sit here now, I can tell you most of them besides being racists are just nasty miserable people so that kind of hatred may serve you for a while but it gets you in the end. My favorite kind of racists are the ones who think no one knows they're such evil bastards. Makes me giggle. Here's a secret, I'll even whisper it to you. Come real close so you can hear......


1 comment:

  1. I just saw this movie today, and I didn't want it to end. I just wanted it to go on and on to see how those women grew.

    I loved the movie and hated the part when the little girl was begging her not to go.

    And every once in a while I find myself saying to myself, "I hate Hilly". errrrr