Beautiful Girls (1996)

Bouncing back to a more recent recommendations from MovieRob, he suggested I watch Beautiful Girls and another one that I’m still looking for.  Luckily Netflix had Beautiful Girls so here we are! I’ve been following Rob fairly recently and he does amazing reviews and he has a side project of currently reviewins Oscar Best Acting Winners and the respective movies. You should definitely go check it out!

beautiful girls posterDirector: Ted Demme

Cast: Matt Dillon, Timothy Hutton, Noah Emmerich, Lauren Holly, Annabeth Gish, Rosie O’Donnell, Max Perlich, Natalie Portman, Uma Thurman, Michael Rapaport, Mira Sorvino

New York City piano player Willie (Timothy Hutton) heads back home for his high school reunion.  Being with his friends and in his old surroundings, while at the going away to think about the crossroads of his life, career and relationship, he sees that nothing has changed much for his friends who stayed at home. They still have the mentality of when they were in high school and each has their own personal struggles to work out as they all face growing up; making the responsible choices.

Beautiful Girls is a thoughtful movie, possibly more geared towards men as they struggle between the idea of growing up and growing old.  Its pretty refreshing because we rarely get the view of men in this phase and a lot of movies like this are more formed in chick flicks geared towards women.  There’s a lot to love about this movie, especially the cast and character development.

beautiful girls natalie portman timothy hutton

I’m not going to say I understand men very well.  I’m happy most days I somewhat understand the logic of what my boyfriend does.  Its a never-ending process.  This movie was special in that way because I’m not saying that men ALL go through the same thing because that would be unfair but this was a nice way to see things. Giving each of these guys, mostly 4 of them, a bigger, more focused story meshed with the women in their life in a rather balanced way was a good thing.  I understood a bit more of the characters: Willie (Timothy Hutton), Tommy (Matt Dillon) and Paul (Michael Rapaport) while Mo (Noah Emmerich) had a more solid life set so he was something of a guiding light along with some of the other sub characters.  It was a very subconscious thing but even though a lot of their mentality seemed off to me, along the way I grew to connect in a way where I wanted them to do the “right” thing.

beautiful girls uma thurman

Other than the guys having a good impact, they needed some ladies that could match up to them.  One of the most intriguing one was Uma Thurman’s appearance as Andera.  She was a beautiful girl that they all were attracted to.  The beautiful thing that was also so understanding and for many of them, she also was helpful in an enlightening way.  Another one that I liked was the young Natalie Portman who had sudden and oddly deep but simple conversations with Willie and in many ways, made him understand a few things and question his life.  Another character that was funny was Rosie O’Donnell’s supporting character, especially when she talked about the unrealistic portrayal of women.

beautiful girls matt dillon

Beautiful Girls was great not only for its characters but it had a really awesome soundtrack.  If you’ve seen this, one of my favorite feel good moments was when they all were together and starting singing Sweet Caroline. Its full of these fun moments but was also thoughtful and engaging.  Its a side we rarely see in men and just the thoughts that might go through their heads as in a way, they shift their vision of women as they get older.  The longing to not grow old but also to not grow up.  Thats one of my favorite conversations in this movie where Mo and Willie talk about this exact thing of his “attraction” to Natalie Portman’s Marty as a way of showing that he didn’t want to grow old and Mo says its his way of not wanting to grow up.  See, Mo = enlightening 😉

The essence of the movie really is in this ramble from Michael Rapaport when he goes on about “beautiful girls”:

Supermodels are beautiful girls, Will. A beautiful girl can make you dizzy, like you’ve been drinking Jack and Coke all morning. She can make you feel high full of the single greatest commodity known to man – promise. Promise of a better day. Promise of a greater hope. Promise of a new tomorrow. This particular aura can be found in the gait of a beautiful girl. In her smile, in her soul, the way she makes every rotten little thing about life seem like it’s going to be okay. The supermodels, Willy? That’s all they are. Bottled promise. Scenes from a brand new day. Hope dancing in stiletto heels.-taken from IMDB

With that said, I have no idea how I’ve never heard of Beautiful Girls.  Its a pretty awesome movie.  Great soundtrack, thoughtful characters and packed with a nice pace and a few feel good moments.  Its fun and fantastic! I totally recommend you to watch this!

Thanks again to Rob for introducing this to me! He is as awesome as this movie and you have to check out his site.  I linked it on top with his blog name! 🙂

8 thoughts on “Beautiful Girls (1996)

  1. I’m really happy you liked it KIm. Always puts a smile on my face when I recommend a movie and someone not only likes it, but loves it!

    Excellent review! Thanks for the mention!

    Like

  2. Pingback: Recommendations Month Recap! | Tranquil Dreams

  3. Whats the song that plays at the end when Timothy Hutton is leaving with girlfriend, says goodbye to Natalie Portman?
    It sounds a lot like a Black Keys song.

    Like

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