7.3/10
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North Country (2005)

R | | Drama | 21 October 2005 (USA)
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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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Writers:

(screenplay), (book) | 1 more credit »
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4,006 ( 489)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 6 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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

1989. Josey Aimes takes her two kids, Sammy and Karen, and leaves her abusive husband Wayne, to return to her northern Minnesota home town. On a chance meeting with her old friend Glory Dodge who works as a driver and union rep at the mine operated by Pearson Taconite and Steel, Josey decides to work at the mine as well, work that is dominated by men in number and in tone. She does so to be able to stand on her own two feet for the first time in her life, something she probably could not have done if she remained in a job washing hair at a beauty salon. Working at the mine does not sit well with her father, Hank Aimes, who also works at the mine and who, like the other male workers, believes she is taking a job away from a man. Hank has believed that all Josey's problems are of her own doing, ever since she, unmarried, had Sammy while she was still in high school. Josey has always stated that she does not know who Sammy's biological father is, which fosters Hank's attitude about her. ... Written by Huggo

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:

$6,422,455 (USA) (21 October 2005)

Gross:

$18,324,242 (USA) (6 January 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Filming conditions were less than cozy. Minnesota's temperatures rarely rose above freezing. See more »

Goofs

When Bill White is at the bar the first time, from one angle he appears to be drinking Leineinkugel's Honey Weiss beer. When they change angles, he is drinking some other brand. When they go back to the first angle, he's again drinking Leineinkugel's. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Josey Aimes: [testifying] Lady, you sit in your nice house, clean floors, your bottled water, your flowers on Valentine's Day, and you think you're tough? Wear my shoes. Tell me tough. Work a day in the pit, tell me tough.
Lawyer: I'm sure we're all sufficiently impressed, Mrs. Aimes.
Josey Aimes: There's no "Mrs." here.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Warner Bros. logo plays but with no music. See more »

Connections

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

Soundtracks

Tell Ol' Bill
Written by Bob Dylan
Performed by Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan appears Courtesy of Columbia Records
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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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This movie outrages me.. willmarryewan
Men are vile midsomer_murderer
Soooooooooo one-sided. robert-954
Slightly Hypocritical ProfessorFate
Great Movie but...what's with Charlize's hair?? wyldsyd2003
What does the title 'North country' mean? rapzip1
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