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North Country (2005)

 -  Drama  -  21 October 2005 (USA)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 27,783 users   Metascore: 68/100
Reviews: 206 user | 152 critic | 39 from Metacritic.com

A fictionalized account of the first major successful sexual harassment case in the United States -- Jenson vs. Eveleth Mines, where a woman who endured a range of abuse while working as a miner filed and won the landmark 1984 lawsuit.

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(screenplay), (book), 1 more credit »
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Title: North Country (2005)

North Country (2005) on IMDb 7.3/10

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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James Cada ...
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Peg
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Storyline

A semi-fictionalized account of a long legal battle of group of women miners who endured a hostile work environment and numerous and continuous insults and unwanted touching when they became the first women to go work at the Eveleth Mines in Minnesota. Written by Linda Miklowitz

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

All She Wanted Was To Make A Living. Instead She Made History.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sequences involving sexual harassment including violence and dialogue, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 October 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Class Action  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$247,375 (Australia) (3 February 2006)

Gross:

$502,980 (South Africa) (3 March 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Actor Bill Nighy stated during a Q&A session at the British Film Institute in London in 2010 that in his opinion he regards Richard Jenkins' performance in this film as one of the finest in motion picture history. See more »

Goofs

Josie's truck is a 1990 or later. See more »

Quotes

Big Betty: You call that dancing? Last time I danced like that I ended up with twins.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The 78th Annual Academy Awards (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Shake The House Down
Written by Danny Joe Brown, Bruce Crump, John Galvin, Bobby Ingram, Duane Roland and Riff West
Performed by Molly Hatchet
Courtesy of Epic Records
By Arrangement with SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An important issue dumbed and numbed
11 June 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I hate to give North Country a relatively low vote because this is such an important issue, and I appreciate the good intentions of director Niki Caro, and the A-list actors who no doubt took a big pay cut when agreeing to take a role.

On the other hand, I feel disappointed, a little angry, as well as insulted as a woman that this hugely important story was made into a melodrama that flattens out what really happened, and somehow manages to diminish the political nature of sexual harassment, even while seeming to highlight it.

At least 90 percent of the problem had to do with Michael Seitzman's script.

In the interview with Seitzman on the DVD, he makes clear that he didn't think the sexual harassment story was the real story. The real story, he said, was the traumatic experience Josie had in high school, and her relationship with her son.

Therefore he should have written a script for Lifetime focusing on what he felt was the "real story". He should not have used one of the most important cases for sexual harassment in legal history as the vehicle for telling this other story.

The producers should have demanded a script that more closely resembled Susannah Grant's Erin Brockovich. The sequence of victimization after victimization depicted in North Country didn't let us get to know Josie's character in any depth. We saw her slammed against the wall again and again, from beginning to end. We see that she stands up against the oppression, but we aren't taken into her sensibility, her choices, her process, her blind spots, character change, etc, etc, like in EB. Likewise, the lack of complexity in the male "macho" characters also flattens the story, and takes away from the real difficulties in challenging sexism and sexual harassment. In real life, character complexity of those who oppress or who defend oppressors is part of what makes the problem of sexual harassment difficult to fight.

I read an interview with Niki Caro, and though I think she's a very talented director, I got the sense that she didn't really get the politics or history behind sexual harassment. It seems things aren't as bad in New Zealand as they are here in the U.S. This is a foreign culture to her, and Northern Minnesota is certainly a foreign culture. I wish she would have spent more time fully understanding the issues and cultural dynamics (including the accent and mannerisms of the area, etc, which were sprinkled into the movie, but not rigorously replicated) before undertaking the project. If she had gone the extra mile to immerse herself in the issue and the region, perhaps she would have demanded a total rewrite of the script.


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