An aspiring author during the civil rights movement of the 1960s decides to write a book detailing the African-American maids' point of view on the white families for which they work, and the hardships they go through on a daily basis.
Set in Mississippi during the 1960s, Skeeter (Stone) is a southern society girl who returns from college determined to become a writer, but turns her friends' lives -- and a Mississippi town -- upside down when she decides to interview the black women who have spent their lives taking care of prominent southern families. Aibileen (Davis), Skeeter's best friend's housekeeper, is the first to open up -- to the dismay of her friends in the tight-knit black community. Despite Skeeter's life-long friendships hanging in the balance, she and Aibileen continue their collaboration and soon more women come forward to tell their stories -- and as it turns out, they have a lot to say. Along the way, unlikely friendships are forged and a new sisterhood emerges, but not before everyone in town has a thing or two to say themselves when they become unwittingly -- and unwillingly -- caught up in the changing times. Written by
Walt Disney Pictures
Skeeter is shown using liquid paper, which in 1963 was still being sold out of its inventor's house and was not yet widely available. People used hard, round "typewriter erasers" and brushes to correct typing errors. See more »
I was born 1911, Chicksaw County, Piedmont Plantation.
And did you know as a girl growing up that one day you'd be a maid?
Yes ma'am, I did.
And you knew that because...
My mama was a maid. My grandmama was a house slave.
[whispering as she writes down]
"house slave..." Did you ever dream of being something else?
What does it feel like to raise a white child when your own child's at home being looked after by somebody else?
See more »
I just returned from seeing a special preview of "The Help," which is due out in theaters this summer.
Okay, so here's the truth: I'm a middle-aged, white male... I didn't read the book and I assumed, based on the fact that this is a virtually an all-female cast, that this was some sort of chick flick. Boy, was I wrong!
This is an incredible film that not only pays justice to the bestseller on which it's based (according to those who have read the book AND seen the film), but is phenomenally cast, with exceptional performances by Viola Davis, Emma Stone, Octavia Spencer, Bryce Dallas Howard and Allison Janney. Veteran actresses Sissy Spacek and Cicely Tyson also deliver incredible performances. While Tyson's character is central to the storyline, her role comprises what seems to be a few, precious minutes of the 2:20 running time, she delivers, in my opinion, one of the most powerful and moving moments in the film...one in which she doesn't even utter a line (trust me, you'll know when you see it.)
The Help also delivers some very funny moments and will make you laugh. I'll go so far as to say that this film and a few of its cast members will draw some Oscar nominations. I certainly think this takes Stone into a whole new level.
The racial imbalances of 1963 are well illustrated in "The Help," and will, no doubt, underscore how far America has come, as well as how little progress we've made in the last 50 years. Either way, this is a powerful movie that needs to be seen on the big screen as soon as you can get a ticket.
269 of 326 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?