...because fiction is our greatest escape from reality...

Here’s to Sisters

Shirley MacLaine blows me away. I’m mesmerized by the characters she chooses to portray as well as her performance for each and every one. She has a way of making you forget you’re watching an act. There are movies of hers that break my heart, yet I will watch them just for her. Terms of Endearment, Steel Magnolias, Guarding Tess…

Just lately, I’ve been watching In Her Shoes. This movie in turn makes me smile and cry. I love it. I love movies that let you witness the transition of a character from emotionally cluttered to content. Or as content as one can be in this mad, mad world.

My husband and I came in right at the beginning black moment for the sisters. Cameron Diaz’s character came off as this selfish bitch without any redeemable characteristics. My husband scoffed and went to bed. I stayed up, already interested. Then I flipped to that priceless On Demand and watched it from the beginning to better understand the characters. Oh, she was definitely redeemable and because we hadn’t seen the beginning, hadn’t witnessed her struggles due to poor education or possibly dyslexia; we didn’t see her very aloneness. This doesn’t excuse her behavior, but as the movie flows, so does our understanding and yes, our hope that she’ll find something for herself.

She isn’t the only character with lessons to learn. I loved them all down to the small role played by the older sister’s best friend. And I’m also a fan of Toni Collette and have been since Muriel’s Wedding. Also, a good flick.

I may have to go back to Shirley MacLaine’s beginning acting days and see what I missed. I saw a couple, but I’ve been a fan since I first absorbed Terms of Endearment in 1983. I say absorbed because this is a movie that seeps deep into you and kind of clings. I remember the first time vividly because I was 13 and I cried all night. I might have cried the next, too. I did the same with the other two movies of hers I mentioned above.

During In Her Shoes, there is this one small section of the movie where she gets an unexpected kiss and I rewound it three times just to replay the expression of shock, displeasure and yes, pleasure. She managed to cancel her emotions out and did it brilliantly.

In Her Shoes is a chick flick – a term I used to find silly, but have since learned to just accept. While my husband might watch it and like it, he won’t watch it more than once as I will. Won’t cry when with the renewel of the sisters’ love. I have sisters and know how very precious they are to me, so I get it.

Here’s to sisters—those you’re born with and those you make. 🙂

Note: Remember, you can write for the last Scene from a Pic for up to ten days, so make sure to click on the picture to bring it up large and look at it once in a while. Something is bound to spark. I do love reading Reader sparks.


  1. Jen Jen
    August 29, 2006    

    Have you read the book In Her Shoes? Yeah, the movie is good, but — as usual, in my opinion *s* — the book is better. And I think Jennifer Weiner is just great. 🙂

    The current scene from a pic reminds me of a character in a stagnating WIP. I may have to dust it off and write out a scene for her for that pic. 🙂

  2. August 29, 2006    

    Terms of Endearment still makes me tear up every time I see it.

  3. August 30, 2006    

    To me, Terms of Endearment is one of the most powerful movies ever made. I have several vivid images of Shirley from that film: calling her daughter while sitting with a gorgeous breakfast tray and her daughter is near poverty and harrassment; being pretentious about her hair until Jack Nicholson drives her in his convertible and cops a feel at the beach; the scene near the end where she suddenly has no make up on and is consumed with grief…Maybe this film is so important to me because I don’t have a sister; only a mother very much like Shirley.

  4. August 30, 2006    

    It is funny that you have just watched In Her Shoes. I have been wanting to see it since it came out but what with life getting in the way, didn’t see it until a week or so ago. My hasband and I sat down together and watched it, and both felt it had one of the best scripts we’ve seen for ages. Yes, it is a chick flick but it can still touch guys too. We both had tears when the old professor died that was teaching Cameron’s character to read.

    And I love Shirley Maclaine. Some of her humorous roles too – Two Mules for Sister Sara, Irma La Douce, and her first film The Trouble With Harry is a lot of fun.

  5. August 30, 2006    

    Jen, if I’ve seen a movie, I’ll never read the book. I’m weird that way. If I get to the book first, then I’m cool. I was burned once when I read The Running Man by Stephen King and was just blown away by how fantastic it was. The movie isn’t worth a mention– it was so freaking bad and had nothing to do with that wonderful story.

    Elaine, I told my husband that the ten minutes he caught near the beginning didn’t begin to cover the script. He watched a little more of it last night and now wants to see the whole thing.

    Bellezza, my husband doesn’t understand my obsession with watching that movie when it’s on. And I’m sure you have sisters that you’ve made. (g)

    I consider half of OKRWA and all of my group Romance Ink to be my sisters.

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