Who Needs “The Help?” Movie Review

The Help: Lessons to learn from.

 “Courage is not just about being brave it is about overcoming fear and daring to do what is right for your fellow man.” There were many lines in this film which are going to be quotable but this one stands out as epic to me.

The previews of “The Help” were spot on with delivering a message that is 5 stars and inspires the viewer to stand up for doing the right thing.

Wednesday, August 10th, DreamWorks Studios released the 2hour and 17 minute Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture directed and written by Tate Taylor entitled “The Help.”  This is a story based on the #1 New York Times Best Seller by Kathryn Stockett.  The heartwarming message depicts the travesty of social injustice in America during the 1960’s in the authors home town of Jacksonville, Mississippi.  The film will touch most viewers in numerous ways with it’s poignant characters who represent a cross section of personal situations alive and well in today’s world.  The powerful storyline is a portrait of a fragmenting world including romance, parental neglect, society position, unjust beating resulting in death, racial prejudice, ignorance, theft, Alzheimer’s, survival, domestic abuse and cancer.

Humor and honest depiction of human nature are the award winning elements running through this film.“Hate and fear are two horns on the same goat.”  another memorable quote from the movie which is destined to be an academy award winning work.

The power of Love overcomes fear in many instances throughout the story line.

Everyone can appreciate the tender message Aibileen, the black maid instilled in all the white children she cared for. She knew she could make them feel good about themselves even when their own mothers did not have the time of day for them or their feelings.  She would ask them:

1.  Is you kind

2.  Is you smart

3.  Is you important

Ciccly Tyson plays Skeeter’s beloved nanny who she loves lke a mother.  She teaches Skeeter to quit feeling sorry for her self… She says “that is what is ugly.” She continues “Everyday when you wake up in the morning ask, Am I going to believe all the bad things fools are going to say about me today?”

Emma Stone (Skeeter), Viola, Davis (Aibileen), and Octavia Spencer (Minny) form an improbable alliance where a relationship evolves which gives them the courage to rise above the lot in life they are living to create change. The help in the 1960’s in Jackson, Mississippi did not have many rights, had to eat and drink from separate dinnerware, ride separate buses and eat separately.  The entire audience cringes as segregationist housewife, Bryce Dallas Howard (Hilly) describes the “Home Health Sanitation Initiative” requiring each white home to have a separate bathroom for the help.

The historic depiction of the shooting of Medgar Evers, the civil rights activist who was gunned down in Jackson, Mississippi on June 12, 1963 in front of his home, the shooting of John F. Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s speech make the viewer feel like they are right in the middle of the conflicts.  The journey from fear of society norms to courage in sharing the  story of “The Help” is a movie for all ages.

“The Help” celebrates with grace and humility the courage it takes to inspire change.

Dig deep in your thought after watching this film and think about you and your courage.  Do you have the courage to do what is right for your fellow man? Is part of the message of an epic film to encourage behavior modification?

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