THE HELP (2011)

Tonight I crashed a book club party. Donna Reed attire required. So, I darkened the brows and dawned the hornrims, pumps, pearls and hairpiece. This was what I was going for:

Of course I hadn’t even read the book, but I heard they were going to the movie after the meeting. Only once did I feel a bit like Jim from The Office episode when he sits in on Pam’s book club, “Angela? …the Ashes? nope.” This party was amazing, though. The hostess, Meredith, played the movie soundtrack and served foods straight the book, including paprika-less deviled eggs and Chocolate Pie. She decorated, had questions mapped out, and she gave us parting gifts with lines from the book and personalized notes attached. She’s good.

And then, the unexpected: in what I had assumed would indeed be the “sleeper hit of the summer” I found a personal Shawshank. Some may slap my face in blasphemy for that comparison, but the truths of this film should wake us up. Hatred has a million faces, but we don’t expect it mingling with beauty.

Bryce Dallas Howard’s gorgeous Hilly Holbrook, proved the formidable opponent, though an almost comic book antagonist. Emma Stone plays her vital opposite as Skeeter, always wishing for beauty until she finds it within. As Skeeter presses in for the true stories of the ever-present under-appreciated “help” she learns to speak her story as well.

In this film we gain new eyes. Shame on you if you don’t cry. Go on. Let yourself. Life Lessons like these cannot be understood without new eyes.  So, wash out the old ones with tears of new beginnings. Become a human being who cares about the hearts of the hurting -whatever their stations, races, crimes, and conclusions. Love one another as God loves you.

For Aibileen’s motto applies to all: “You is kind. You is smart. You is important.” And don’t you forget it.


Add yours →

  1. Oh my word! This is brilliantly written! I’m just going to have to steal it 🙂 And give you the credit, of course! Can’t wait to see it.

  2. did you realize that the ‘white trash’ outcast neighbor was jessica chastain, aka the mother in ‘tree of life’?

  3. Wow – what a great review! To be honest, I wasn’t all that interested in seeing it, with such great hype. But comparing it to Shawshank – yeah, I’ll be seeing it. Thanks!

  4. I just finished the book; wouldn’t let myself go see the movie until then. I can’t wait!

  5. I have been SO excited to see this movie … now I can’t WAIT!

    Great review. I hear the flick already has Oscar buzz going…


  6. yourforgottodust August 23, 2011 — 2:29 pm

    listen I am from that era and I see the film as an attack on white women and a romanticizing of blacks. They have to go that far back in time to find a black woman who is admirable and beaten down by whites because black women are robbing and attacking whites in flash mobs.
    so this piece of drivel from Hollywood.
    but get this – I cleaned house for those same white women and I am a white woman from a formerly upscale background, not a walmart toughie with tattoos,. I worked with black maids at a hotel when I was 18-9- I rode the bus with them to the rich white homes, I helped them clean thier rooms at the hotel, I was on their plane. So maybe you should just look at this as servants vs masters and not get into the race. truth is its just really hard work really exhausting and it is just as humiliating for white women to serve white women as it is for blacks. if you are in someones house cleaning you are less then them and it is wierd but its not about blacks being oppressed, there have always been servants and slaves as far as I know and its always been hard and blacks haven’t been slaves or servants any more then whites have been.

    • “… blacks haven’t been slaves or servants any more than whites have been.” Really? So that’s why we fought the civil war? To free the white slaves? Now it all makes sense. I was on the fence about seeing this film. Now- with your review and this comment- I think I have to see it! Thank you for letting us know “where you’re coming from” with your brief bio.

      • Altho I believe this original comment is a bit negative, I do think she hit an accurate point, whether it applies to this book/movie or not. (and I read the book; loved it!) There has been slavery since practically the beginning of time, and it exists still today in places, and no, it’s not just those with dark skin…. so, that part is arguable if you look across the whole of history and not just our recent past. It’s wrong, no matter who is enslaved. Also, I understand a bit of what she’s saying – my husband used to work for a pest control company, and in one town in particular – where lots of super-rich have vacation homes, he was treated with disregard and contempt because he was “the help” in a way… people can act horribly, regardless of the era.

      • Just a quick history lesson for you the Civil War was fought over States Rights not over slavery.

      • Right Michae, the (southern) states wanted the right to own slaves. White wash that if you want, but I’m not interested in historical revisionism.

        BTW everyone, since it appears you all can’t see beyond your suburban homes, there are more slaves today (in number) then any other time in human history.

        Oh, and about this film, absolute trite garbage.

    • The whole POINT of the movie (which I have not seen, but I have read the book) WAS to highlight the race issues in that era. It’s not about servants vs. masters. That’s just the means through which the issue of black vs. white was portrayed.

      • GUYS! slavery is just a part of manipulating humans for their greater good. it is always BAD weather black or white. Everyone has equal brain, why slave for someone else when you can make your own empire?

      • Charlotte-Marie August 25, 2011 — 5:56 am

        @ Michele Walter Shuman: An even “quicker history lesson for you the CIvil War was fought over states RIghts” to have slaves.

    • Praise you for your comment!

    • an attack….seriously?! what was happening (if anything even was) to white maids at that time period was not an issue. when someone writes a book about white maids in that time period, i hope you’ll be able to give the review.

    • Are there class issues in America? Yes. Do they compare to racial issues? Not even close. You should reread your comment because you are speaking from a place of white privilege and you yourself make some pretty racist comments – “They have to go that far back in time to find a black woman who is admirable…” Really?! Did you really just say that?

  7. i can’t wait to see it, thanks for your heartfelt review.

  8. The movie was as half as good compare to the book, it’s kind of left me empty. Book was a lot more powerful, but the acting was good. Thank you for sharing!

  9. I LOVED the book! I really want to see the movie. Hopefully I can make it to a movie theater before it is no longer showing!

  10. saw this movie a week ago – INCREDIBLE – so good –

  11. This was the first book I read on my Kindle when I purchased it several years ago. Brilliant, fantastic, and tragic because I grew up in Jackson on the dying end of such mania. But you made a statement: Hatred has a million faces, but we don’t expect it mingling with beauty. Love the observation.

  12. The cast for The Help is stellar, i am pretty sure they are in the run for an oscar.

    Loved the writing too!

    Arjun Kay

  13. its very true, inorder to learn we must first unlearn, I love your analogy with the tears…

  14. I read the book and I absolutely loved it. Movies usually ruin it for me (never as good) so I don’t think I’ll see it…but the book is fabulous!

  15. was thinking of seeing this movie! thanks for convincing me!

  16. I was a little iffy of whether or not I wanted to see The Help because I’ve heard different things from different people about it. After reading this post, I really want to see it now. Actually, I’ll probably read the book first because the books are always better than the movies… 🙂

    Congrats on being Freshly Pressed, by the way!

    • Try the audiobook, if you don’t mind those. It seriously is one of the most well-done, amazing audio books I have ever listened to. The book itself is amazing, but the audio takes it to a much higher level of awesome.

  17. I haven’t yet read the book, but I’m going with a friend to see it tomorrow night. I loved your comments on the movie.

  18. I heard a very confusing review of the movie on NPR yesterday. I haven’t watched it, but since it criticized the book which I’ve read I figured they couldn’t be too different. The review suggested that there is hardly any darkness in the movie, that the story is a cheery, rose-colored portrayal of the place and time. I, however, thought that the child being beaten to the point of near-death, the activist getting shot in front of his family, and the white women taking action to get “the help” out of their restrooms were pretty troubling yet accurate examples of the culture. We all know there were gruesome things happening then; I don’t think the movie needs a mangled body hanging from a tree to let people know that it was a disgusting, vile time in the history of the city.

  19. It’s great, i will find and watch it. That’s a good content for movie.

  20. I finished the book but remained in Jackson for a while. I hope the movie carries as much emotion and energy as the book. Beautiful review!

  21. i.m so curious about the movie..

  22. I’m sorry, but I beg to differ, I saw some MAJOR problems in the Help and my afterthoughts about it weren’t too positive.

  23. I would def. recommend reading the book as well to anyone who hasn’t! The movie is good, but the book is GREAT.

  24. I agree with those who say the book was better than the film… But the film was well done and hit most of the major points. The casting was fantastic & I absolutely loved who they chose to play Minnie – she was just as I had pictured!

  25. I have yet to see the movie, but I read the book at the suggestion of my English teacher. It was INCREDIBLE!! It was so inspiring and well written. I think Kathryn Stockett is the modern day Margaret Mitchell.

  26. My feelings were mixed when I left the theatre. I have not written my review, yet. Really can’t sum up my thoughts until I read the book for comparison. Thanks for your review. 🙂

  27. I hadn’t heard of the book before it became a movie, but I just bought it at BN about 30 hrs ago and I’m nearly through 🙂 what with work and sleep I’ve had to put it down a couple times… but it really is a masterpiece!

  28. Congrats on FP. I agree with the others that both the book AND the movie leave a lot to be desired. Here’s another point of view you may want to consider:

  29. Loved the book and I can’t wait to see the movie. I heard that the movie is a little watered down in comparison but still good.

  30. This is an awesome review!!!! 🙂 I loved the book and the movie! I think you pretty much captured the essence of the movie/story with this review. Also, that book party sounds like so much fun!

  31. The Help is simply choosing what is right or what is expected of you, when we can cross that line is when we will truly find our meant to be destiny.

  32. I’ve just started to read this book. It’s great. I love Skeeter and Minny, fab characters. Congrats on Freshly Pressed.

  33. I LOVED the book, and as you said, it really makes you open your eyes. Well, I think mine were fairly open to begin with; I’d like to think that, anyway! I haven’t seen the movie yet – part of me wants to, part of me feels I’ll just be disappointed. I don’t put much faith in reviews because they usually have nothing to do with whether I like a particular movie or not! I’ll probably see it, if only because I want to take my teen daughter (who probably won’t read the book) because I don’t think her generation understands how bad things were, not all that long ago. And they need to know.

  34. I also loved the book and the movie….there were parts that I felt were left out of the movie that were really important, but I still enjoyed it immensely, will definitely buy it when it comes out. This was extremely well-written and says a lot about the movie. Congrats on Freshly Pressed!

  35. liverunloveyoga August 23, 2011 — 6:57 pm

    Loved this book! You’ve now convinced me to spend my some time this weekend heading to the theater!

  36. I agree. Love one another. That is what this movie was about wasn’t it? I loved it too. Thanks for your inspiring review and your call to action.

  37. I loved the book, and I loved the movie. I have never gone from laughing my butt off to crying my eyes out so many times in the span of a couple of hours, and everyone else in the theater seemed to be on the same ride. I also thought it was brilliantly cast.

  38. I loved this movie! It makes you cry, then laugh, then cry again… Well worth the one-hour wait — the previous showing was sold-out. And no wonder!

  39. Not to be a stick in the mud, but the fact that so many white women are rushing to see The Help of itself proves that the movie doesn’t touch on the deeply ugly truth of life back then, because no woman would rush to see such harsh truth.

    It’s films like these that portray a false history, that’s washed clean of the ugly truth: that your grandmothers and great grandmoms, and great aunts didn’t have the moral fortitude to speak out against this oppression, euphemised as “The Help” for fear, for greed, for selfishness, etc. Just because The “Help” called the white women names behind their backs doesn’t equalize the situation, that white women are fully aware of, but pretend not to see. (Back then and today)

    Though “The Help” has stellar actresses with Oscar worthy performances, it still actually shows that there is still a deep seated white woman guilt at play, ripe for manipulation, even by other white women.

    And movies like these intend to manipulate that guilt by showing this parallel reality. So the author who manipulates by showing this whitewash version of truth will: 1. Be uplifted with accolades. 2. Placate for a time those nagging guilts that never really go away, but lie in dormant in your minds. 3. Become rich and famous (her goal no doubt), at the expense of white woman guilt.

    Here’s the antidote to White Woman Guilt: Jessica Jackley of Kiva Microloans

  40. great review! i’m looking forward to seeing it. thanks for sharing!

  41. I really want to see this movie; looks good.

  42. Great post. I can’t wait to see this movie.

  43. You just convinced me to see this movie. 🙂 Well written, and it sounds like you had a lot of fun!

    Kudos on getting freshly pressed.

  44. Gosh to describe this movie is just far beyond words. To me it was funny and sad to say the least. It really in truly was an eye open to those of us that wasn’t born during those times and only had the opportunity to read about those times by going to school and reading about it in our history books, or hearing about it from our Great-Grandparents or Grandparents that told us stories about their lives back then.

    I’m a huge crier when it comes to certain movies, but this movie just captured my heart and my soul. I became a cry baby at the end when Aibileen got fired and Mae Mobley was crying and asked her not to leave. Aibileen was the only mother that she knew.And When Aibileen asked Mae Mobley to recite what she had told her Mae began to say “You is kind,you is smart. You is important.” To see that child crying and banging on the window for Aibileen to come back was just heart breaking.

    P.S. Great Post and Congrats on being Freshly Pressed 🙂

  45. Great review – congrats on being Freshly Pressed! I hope your friend didn’t get TOO authentic with the pie….

    I loved the film, though I did hear the book was better. Good acting, great script, many moving scenes. The only issue I had was that, if the casting directors wanted it to be believable that Emma Stone’s character had never had a date (through 4 years of college? Come on!), they should have cast a much less attractive actor. Other than that, great film.

  46. I loved the book. And thanks for reminding me about Aibileen’s motto that applies to all: “You is kind. You is smart. You is important.” And don’t you forget it. I’m going to use that with my students. Great review. Can’t wait to see the move. I grew up with Effie, our Abileen, and this movie really hit home for me. I loved Effie.

  47. And I bet that some of your best friends are African-Americans. I’m sure it makes all you Yankee-Americans feel-good. I feel like throwing up!

  48. Marytheirishservant August 23, 2011 — 10:57 pm

    The last ancestor that came over was an english maid who worked at Hyde park, In the US, blacks were brought over because the whites in servitude ran away, it wasn’t as easy for blacks. I wrote earlier about being a white maid during the same time period. I pointed out that blacks and black women dont have the market cornered on being servants or slaves.
    I assumed you knew more about history, because servitude and slavery have been colorblind throughout history- look at all the irish maids , the Romans with their slaves, people of all races caught in battle or born into slavery. servants and slaves/ Being a maid is always very close to slavery, because until perhaps the last few decades , maids had no power or options.

    I distrust Hollywood and figure it’s just another kick at whites as the bad guys.
    But as I said I was a maid, a white woman, who worked alongside black women in the late 60s and until the 90s.
    I can tell you that anyone who has power over another can be very cruel. But mostly maid work kills your back and joints.
    It is also shaming because no one respects maids or cleaning ladies. I even used to clean the house of a middle class black woman named Aquline and she was afraid I wouldnt work fo rher because I am white.when i was a very young hotel maid, and very fast, I was given the rooms of the older black women to clean to help them out. I never filed a discrimination lawsuit or complained about evil black maids. I waited for the bus on Council Crest in Portland oregon with a black maid who was very beautiful, she barely disdained to talk to me and when she got on the bus, the driver was black and with me sitting there started to rant about ” white people”
    I distrust hollywood for sending out this garbage, it’s driiving miss daisy.

    • Oh, please. Were you ever denied the right to go to a school or college because of your skin color? Were you ever denied access to the best hospital because of your skin color? Were you ever ran out of town because of your skin color? And don’t go and tell me that some point in the past white people were slaves too because that’s nothing you or your family have experienced. You have never experienced racism before and to say that your being poor and having a crappy job is anything like racism is completely ludicrous and downright offensive. Being a maid is nothing like slavery, because, guess what?! You can change your status – you can get an education, you can get a better job, you’re paid, you’re not forcibly separated from your family, you’re not beaten, you can inherit property and money, you can quit your job, the law doesn’t turn a blind eye if you’re killed… I could go on and on.

      And guess what, you may not want to admit it, but “white guys” are the “bad guys” in American history, and, quite frankly, your attitude of being a white “victim” is part of the ongoing problem. The fact is, white people have always had the power and position in America, which means they can’t experience racism because white people aren’t disempowered as a group, which is how racism works. Any effort to redress racism as a crime against white people is itself racist.

  49. “Hatred has a million faces, but we don’t expect it mingling with beauty.”

    I actually finds lots of hatred mingling with beauty and a classic example is narcissi with falling in love with oneself — self egoistic and egotistic attitudes are at times coming from those who find themselves to be beautiful.

    In fact this book was called the side of gone with the wind that wasn’t explored.

  50. I started reading the book and it was great! Can’t wait to see the movie! The book club sounds like a great idea the way your friend put it together, thinking of holding something similar.

  51. Great book! I posted a little about it the other day. I saw the movie 2 weeks ago. I thought it left out some great parts of the book (the naked man in the yard, and they changed the break-up between Skeeter and what’s-his name, also Celia did not cook for Minnie in the book), but nothing that really bothered me. Books like that always make me wonder how I would have felt about black people, had I lived back then. Would I have been like Skeeter or Hilly? It’s scary to think I’d be like the latter. Great review, by the way!

  52. I just saw the movie this past weekend with my 12 and 19 year old daughters…we cried through the entire film…read the book a cple of years ago and thought it was pretty true to the book. There were a couple of things I noticed that were different but still loved it. Some of those white “ladies” were downright scary!

  53. Thanks for sharing such mazing views! Now i’m tempted to watch this movie!!!! 😀

  54. It’s pretty funny the above commenter thought Kathryn Stockett is a modern day Margaret Mitchell, I just finished reading this book and did a bunch of online digging into the author and the research she did for the book. What I found were some interesting articles and interviews about whether or not Stockett had the right to speak on behalf of these black maids. Some articles questioned whether Aibileen was just another “Mammy” like in Gone with the Wind, too kind to be believable. I personally loved the book, but I still get excited digging into author’s research and I learned Stockett is currently facing a lawsuit by her brother’s maid! She says the book is largely based on her asking questions about her own childhood maid’s experience and that she interviewed one woman and her maid who were together during the time period she set the book. If you want to check out the articles, I linked to a lot of them in my book review: Enjoy and thanks for posting this! That hostess is too cute; love her party ideas and the theme hairdos-I would so do that!

  55. Very well written post. I loved your line “Hatred has a million faces, but we don’t expect it mingling with beauty.” I have read the book and am waiting impatiently for it to show here in Bangkok! congrats on the fp

  56. I need to read the book! And I will be seeing the move for sure!! I loved the last line “love one another as God loves you”. Great!

  57. I was born in 1964 in SC. We had “help” in our home but not like in this book/movie. Annie Bell helped raise so many in my family including not only myself and several cousins but my cousin’s 5 children. Oh, how we all loved her. And what a privilege it was for my aunt to care for her in her old age. (Annie Bell told everyone “she’s my white momma.”) I visited her in the hospital right before she died a few years ago. She was so proud to tell everyone that I had “married a preacher.” I have tears in my eyes as I remember kissing her papery cheek smelling of clean linen for the last time. She was truly a member of our family.
    I just finished the book so that, as others have said, I could see the movie. I can’t wait. Thank you for a beautiful review.

  58. My boyfriend and I saw this movie yesterday and I cried. It was SO good!!

  59. The book is fantastic and so worth the read, sounds like the movie doesn’t disappoint. Can’t wait to see it. Great post.

  60. I cried my eyes out in that theatre!

  61. Can’t wait to see this, it looks so interesting!
    Stop by sometime

  62. A party celebrating The Help, costumed and all…love it. I cried but also laughed out loud. The movie was as good an interpretation of a book as I’ve seen. I thoroughly enjoyed your post. I did one on The Help this week also. There’s a lot below the surface there.

  63. Your “own personal Shawshank”? Yeesh, if that means what I think it means I am definitely NOT going to see this movie.

  64. I really enjoyed this post, especially after just having seen the movie. I read the book with other ladies from my church in our book club and I can honestly say, It is now one of my all time favorite books. Loved, loved, loved the movie!! I think the actress who played Aibileen should get nominated for an academy award. She blew me away. You have a definite way with words. Thanks for posting!

  65. Beautiful and well-written review. I would definitely recommend reading the book in addition to watching the movie. Personally, I was curious about a change made in the movie. I don’t want to spoil it for anyone. (Hint: Constantine)

  66. Just saw this movie Friday night!! I cried throughout the whole movie…

  67. I would crash that book club too. What fun it must have been!
    I usually don’t cry during movies, but I did with this one.
    I also agree with the commenters before me… the book is definitely worth reading. I loved it!


  69. I really admire you. Helping your friend achieve full potential is truly wonderful. I will check this out myself as I have one or two friends who may be interested in doing this. Have a great day.

  70. My husband and I just saw it tonight after having read the book, and while we do think the book was better, the movie was great. I have been trying to understand why some of the biggest detractors I meet (none of whom have read the book or seen the movie) are white people who had full-time African-American “help” in the 1960s through 1990s. The subtext with these people seems to be “how dare someone speak about this” or that somehow this story is not gritty enough.

  71. great, I feel moved to tears as I stood in the theater that

  72. This was extremely well-written and says a lot about the movie. Congrats on Freshly Pressed!

  73. “…blacks haven’t been slaves or servants any more then whites have been.”
    The commenter who made that response above misses the point and confuses two issues. Whether The Help is well-written or “Hollywoodized” is one issue and should not overshadow the point of the story which is the dehumanization of the Jim Crow Era based on skin color and skin color alone. This “demon of contempt” was the sister of slavery and the cousin of apartheid, and its definition was that skin color gave one the DIVINE RIGHT to treat someone of another color as sub-human. Because of 1/6 drop of Negro blood (that was the law), it didn’t matter whether you had the intelligence to become a scientist or the talent to become an opera singer, you would be “denied the ability” to even dream of becoming what you were created to be. This was a curse on the indiviuals and on our country’s future because so many, many of our American citizens were destoryed creatively and intellectually.
    My mother (and my aunt) were domestics, educated, and gifted as an opera singer and dancer. That era broke both their minds and her hearts (my sister, my cousins, and I became orphans), and there wasn’t a place our mothers could go to escape being what the Jim Crow laws demanded of them because of their “color” (my aunt was so light-skinned she could have passed for white, but that 1/6th drop of blood was an invisible prison). As movie goers we can humbly appreciate The Help for what it is: an imperfect window into a portion of history we don’t ever want to repeat. Doing so doesn’t deny the pain others have gone through; we have an obligation to embrace each other’s sorrows and try to become better people because of that compassionate understanding. Who said: “A nation that forgets its past is doomed to repeat it”? (Just the thoughts of a storyteller:

  74. sounds brilliant. I’m going to see it now!

  75. I totally agree! I watched a part of the movie and I thought to myself “wow, for once I am seeing a true movie, that opens the eyes and crosses color lines!”
    Can’t wait to see the rest after this!

  76. Just saw the movie this week, and although I loved it, the book was FAR better by comparison. The movie lost a lot in the translation; there was little emphasis put on the danger in what these women were doing, in that place, and in that time. I thought that the movie did an injustice to the historical details in that regard. However, it’s definitely worth the watch – just be sure to read the book first!

  77. I loved this book! I have not seen the movie yet because I was afraid it would stray too far from the actual book. I’m glad to read that it didn’t. I will definitely have to go see the movie now.

    The book touched me so much. I was sad when it ended because I just wanted it to continue on…

  78. I just finished the book at midnight this morning. I couldn’t put it down. It made me cry like I never have cried before.
    This was an amazing read!

    • I totally agree, I read the book in 32 hours non stop. I could not sleep, but I also could not stop…I had to know what the terrible awful was, if Mrs. Celia was a lush really, if Minny would stand up for herself inside the walls of her home and if Skeeter would ever learn the truth from her mother.

  79. Good stuff. Looking forward to seeing this movie!

  80. I saw “The Help” last night……different from the original… songs…..and the Beatles were played by black women.

  81. Uhhmmm…you’re a genius! Great Work! & Congrats on the FrEsHlY PrEsSEd!

  82. loved the book and can’t wait to see the movie. wonderful, well-written review/post.

  83. Dad hires someone to clean our floors. I never saw them as being any
    different then anyone else – just another person with a job that just so happens
    to bring them into your home. Might as well be a cashier or a teacher. As for that book – I haven’t read it yet but I think people should stop talking about J.K. rolling getting rejected thirteen times by her publishers. The Auther of the help is my new
    champion – count them – SIXTY TIMES! thats how many it took to convince people her work was worth something – more white guilt? call it what you will. She
    deserves a metal just for persistence!

  84. …fantastic review that I, as a black MALE, was on the fence about seeing… your word choices for this review have left me stunned and…anxious to see this movie now!

    a million thanks… and then one more to make it last!

  85. originalpieceapparel August 24, 2011 — 5:08 pm

    LOVE THE MOVIE & Aibileen’s motto “You is kind. You is smart. You is important.” And don’t you forget it.”


  86. I loved the book so much that I’ve read it twice. I usually don’t see the movie after reading the book, but I am going this weekend to see it.

  87. Great article! I can’t wait to see this movie. I saw the previews and thought it looked different and good! Haven’t seen a tear-jerker in years! Thanks for the post.

  88. I absolutely loved the book, and now I can’t wait to see the movie!

  89. Ah I thought this looked really bad but seeing as you make it sound so good I think I just might see it!

    Congrats on getting into freshly pressed!

  90. My blog today was inclusive of The Help. This doesn’t mean much unless you know I’m a Gestalt Practitioner and NOT a film critique! Point of interest is that the author of The Help was reportedly turned down 60 times before it was finally picked up! The message of being on one’s authentic target and having great tenacity is the core of my blog. Funny how things are always connected….
    Would love to post a link on my page to your blog article.
    ~From Paris with love.

  91. My wife wants me to go see this with her. Maybe I will now.

  92. Inciting conversation is a kudo to the author of The Help. When people talk, especially with such fervor as is displayed here, it is a sure sign that things needed to be said. Although many humans would love to believe that all the ‘isms’ are a thing of the past, the uglier brutal truth says just look at the comments made here by either the sheep, the ignorant, or the average attitude. Rac”ism”, sex”ism”, age”ism”, class”ism”, and an endless line of biases are still very much alive in our “enlightened” society. We may not have black servants, and we may even embrace our gay nephew, and this may make us believe we are above the ‘isms’ when if fact, the popularity of the movie and book are only little microcosms of the bigger-badder picture of our humanness. We are still, all of us, still growing. And all one need do to verify this remark is to turn on FOX news and listen to the racist hate mongers dissing the President or slamming the new Martin Luther King monument (that took almost 3 decades to come to fruition).
    This post is astonishing and valuable in the ability it has to provoke, and to promote conversation. To that, I say nicely done.

  93. I want to see this soo bad still! But everyone has either seen it already or has no interest in watching it! i am about to go by myself if no one will watch it with me by friday…

    -Bianca at

  94. GREAT post, beautiful description! I loved the book, and was impressed that the movie didn’t stray far from the story line. Superior acting, especially in staying in concordance with the characters in the novel.
    There is so much more to learn from this novel/movie than racism. And for goodness sakes can people just accept that it’s fiction? Based on events that scarily resemble the truth, but fiction non the less.

  95. I have not seen it yet neither have I read the book. Your comments do not discourage me from seeing the movie though. I think they might have sparked my interest some more. 🙂 As a matter of fact some of my girlfriends are going to see the movie tomorrow and I just might join them. I do have a question for you. Do you believe one should read the book first- when a movie is based on it? I, personally enjoy even more comparing /discussing different movies based on the same book or events than comparing a book to a movie based on it. Now that you have seen the movie, will you go back to read the book?

    • Thanks for asking! You may not believe it, but I teach books – Freshmen English baby. I use tons of film clips in my classes, but I rarely show the whole film because it’s impossible to put the true depth of an author’s meaning into a 2 hour interpretation. Film is visual storytelling. It’s usually a different story. I do love the conversation and comparison. I do usually like to read before I see, but too often I’m disappointed. Lately I think, if I like the movie, I’ll probably love the book. You?

  96. Nice post, very true to the movie and book’s moral. I watched the movie, and like any book-worm, I immediately bought the book no more than 24hours later. I’m only half-way, but it’s moral is definitely more complex, no, diverse than many assume. It would be cool if the book Skeeter writes was a real, but Kathryn’s is still an amazing read, and the interpretation is an amazing movie. Props to “The Help” and props to splatter on film for posting a very true-to-the-story, post.

  97. Usually I read every book before seeing the movie. I’ve found that when I watch movies before reading, I’m turned off of the book forever. This one, however, I broke my own rule, went to the theater, and then went out a couple of days later and bought the book. I’m reading it right now, and it’s fabulous, just like the film is!

  98. i am really looking forward to seeing this. thanks for the review, and extra super kudos for including an “office” reference.

    Hey, check out this just breaking news about racism. If it were not still an undertow there would be no reason for the President to add this historical piece of art to the walls of the White House.
    Just sayin’….
    ~From Paris with love and light.

  100. thebigbookofdating August 24, 2011 — 10:33 pm

    Great review!

  101. I watched this today and bawled lots! I really think Viola Davis (who played Abilene) is a stellar actress and I hope she gets nominated for an award!

    – Nise en Scène

  102. I saw the movie an loved it some of the post i read talked about slavery its not about slavery its about race an the contempt that some people had for blacks these people were raised to hate blacks lets just hope that their not teaching it to their kids

  103. Thanks for the info, I really like your post.
    By the way, I am originally from Rio de Janeiro – Brazil.
    Many thanks again.

  104. I loved the opening of your blog post about The Help and the book club (made me smile). Having read the book (twice), seen the movie (twice) and a part of a sisterhood that has had some very opinionated and heated conversations about the book, the movie and the actresses and their characters I am inclined to agree with Jan D, that both you and the author have definitely incited conversation.

    Humilation is not a skin tone, it is an act and can and may be experienced by any living individual.

    Thank you for your closing line “You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”

  105. Wonderful review! Let’s hope it comes out on the British side of the Atlantic before too long, lest I’m forced to watch trailers on YouTube and imagine an undoubtedly inferior version in my undoubtedly inferior mind.

  106. I reviewed this movie as well on my blog, however, I compared the book to the film and talked about different aspects of it. There is no denying it’s a great story, however, the book was magnificent, especially for a first-time author. Hollywood left out a few key factors, which I thought would have made the film even stronger. The acting was amazing and it is worth seeing, whether you’ve read the book or not.

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  108. Hatred has a million faces, but we don’t expect it mingling with beauty. This is a stellar statement!

  109. True to life the movie was. The bridge clubs my mother attended were just like these. Hilly ran the show and everyone, no matter their own inclinations, followed suit. It is difficult to buck the trend, no matter how you may think or feel. One strong personality can shape the whole situation. The movie is not just about the suppression of The Help, but also about how that suppression came to be entrenched in white society. God help us all.

  110. I simply loved the movie…cried a little though

  111. I also review films, mostly documentaries, on “Thea’s Flicks.” This movie is on my “must see” list.

  112. Wow! Your review is beautiful.
    I read “The Help” and loved it. It has the honour of being the first book I read on my Kindle. The movie is about to be released here in Australia and I had decided not to see it. The trailers look too “Stepford Wives” clean compared to the book.
    But your review has changed my mind. I will pack my tissues and go view the screen version of a treasured book.

  113. It was an amazing book, and a wonderful movie! You laugh, you cry, you marvel at the hate that exists in this world. You cheer when good people prevail…and you leave the theater feeling full of hope and happiness. Excellent post!

  114. I have seen the movie and I read the book at the suggestion of my English teacher. It was INCREDIBLE!! It was so inspiring and well written. I think Kathryn Stockett is the modern day Margaret Mitchell.
    MBT Scarpe

  115. What a pity! I have no time to watch these !!

  116. I listened to the book rather than reading it and want to see the movie. I hope that the accents and the flavor of the south come through in the movie too. I didn’t like the ending of the book, felt it was rushed. Congrats on being FP.

  117. I’m that person that needs to read the book first so I best be getting to it!! Can’t wait to see the movie now, thanks for the review! And seriously cute idea with the “role-playing” down to the food! Love it!!!

  118. Whoa!!!,Wow….jaw still dropped,definitely the next movie on my list.

  119. me SO excited to see this movie because here many people have been put great review thanks for sharing post

  120. I think this kind of posts Are really Favorable And useful For the People who are Writing Or searching on about this kinds of matters…i also have got a lot of information from your post it is a great Source of information,I really like the way you expressed your thoughts.Keep Writing And keep update us with Such a useful Ideas.Thanks for posting This article!

  121. woaah. nicely done. very well.

  122. These kind of post are always inspiring and I prefer to read quality content so I happy to find many good point here in the post

  123. Excellent post! Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed too! I saw this this weekend and LOVED it. It horrified me, but I loved it. I learned some new and awful truths that I thought I already knew all about… but I know now that I had no idea. Thank you for posting this about what was an amazing story about one of America’s darkest hours.

  124. well i saw the movie and read the book and let me say, it was amazing!!!
    so many realistic facts about life back then with an amazing storyline. visit my site i need comments

  125. thanks for the review! i’m looking forward to seeing this one.

  126. peas and cougars- about 30 replies before)
    thank you for your black reverse racist post. You obviously have never been a maid, nor do you read history. If you did you would see that the short period that Blacks were slaves was not representative of what races were slaves before or after .. even blacks keep slaves in Africa in some areas today!!!!! what made you so angry was that I didnt react with the appropriate white guilt or up the black people as victims. Just can’t give up your special status now can you??

  127. I’m not sure I just read a review. Much more a marketing piece. Ah, who cares? The movie had some flaws, but it was pretty wonderful. Well paced, good story. I tell friends who have kids to see it with them, then off to the pizza joint for pie and talk about the flick.

  128. Thanks for the info, I really like your post..

  129. That girl with the “cat’s eyes” glasses is pretty in a strange way.

  130. Wow this is inspiring!Your post just made me hungry. I really enjoyed your post .Love the photographs and your story!Thank you for sharing that. I was waiting for someone with the correct perspective and background to post something.

  131. The movie was as half as good compare to the book, it’s kind of left me empty. Book was a lot more powerful, but the acting was good. Thank you for sharing..

  132. I want to watch this movie! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  133. Pretty awesome post. I just stopped by by your site and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed exploring your content. Any way, I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!

  134. realanonymousgirl2011 September 10, 2011 — 6:38 am

    I can’t wait to see this movie. Thanks!

  135. Nice review! This is exactly the type of information that should be shared around the internet. Shame on the Google for not ranking this blog post higher!

  136. Best movie, ever.

  137. Great stuff here! I really enjoy your style.

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