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Overall Rating

Awesome: 16.33%
Worth A Look73.47%
Just Average: 8.16%
Pretty Crappy: 2.04%
Sucks: 0%

5 reviews, 19 user ratings

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In Her Shoes
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by Peter Sobczynski

"Sole Sisters"
4 stars

Over the last decade or so, Curtis Hanson has developed into one of the most predictably unpredictable filmmakers to come along since Alan Rudolph. After the surprise success of his psycho-nanny thriller “The Hand That Rocks the Cradle” in 1992, he could have easily eked out a living by doing one mid-level suspense film after another. Instead, he followed it with a Meryl Streep action film (“The River Wild”), a neo-noir thriller (“L.A. Confidential”), an amiable shaggy-dog dramedy (“Wonder Boys”) and a rap-infused melodrama that transcended its seemingly exploitative roots (the Eminem vehicle “8 Mile.”) While some have questioned the wisdom of his latest choice of a project–an adaptation of Jennifer Weiner’s chick-lit bestseller “In Her Shoes”–it makes as much sense as any of those other titles. More importantly, it once again demonstrates that Hanson’s gifts as a filmmaker transcend genre limitations–this is one of those rare directors who seem as if they could take any project handed them and transform it into an interesting and entertaining final product.

Cameron Diaz and Toni Collette star as Maggie and Rose, a pair of mismatched sisters–the former a drunken trollop getting close to her shelf date and the latter a frumpy lawyer who constantly has to bail the other out of trouble. After Maggie betrays Rose in a particularly hurtful way, Rose gives her the boot for good. With nowhere else to go, Maggie makes her way to a retirement community in Florida to crash with Ella (Shirley MacLaine) her long-lost and presumed-dead grandmother. At first, Maggie’s only plan is to sponge off of Ella but she unexpectedly finds herself fitting in amongst people who don’t simply regard her as a sex object. As for Rose, she evolves as well–she leaves her dull job and snags both a gig as a dog walker (don’t ask) and a sweet fiancee (Mark Feurstein)–but her unresolved feelings about her sister threaten her happiness. The resourceful Ella brings Rose down to Florida for a conclusion in which everyone comes to terms with each other and gets the happy ending that they more or less deserve.<

Although Hanson will no doubt try to claim otherwise, “In Her Shoes” is a chick flick through and through. That said, it is actually a pretty good example of the genre. Diaz, Collette and MacLaine are all pretty appealing (this is the loosest, funniest work that MacLaine has come up with in a long time) and Hanson and screenwriter Susannah Grant do a pretty good job of mixing the comedy with the more sentimental material.(Regarding the latter, Norman Lloyd, a veteran actor whose career stretches back as far as Alfred Hitchcock’s “Saboteur” in 1942, is moving and effective in his brief scenes as a retired professor who takes Maggie under his wing.)

Although more than a little uneven (at 130 minutes, it runs a little long and things don’t really take off until Maggie gets to Florida), “In Her Shoes” is still a nice example of the genre and while I may not have required Kleenex at the end (unlike the people sitting in front of me), I wasn’t too embarrassed to have seen it either.

link directly to this review at https://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=12757&reviewer=389
originally posted: 10/06/05 23:50:13
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2005 Toronto Film Festival For more in the 2005 Toronto Film Festival series, click here.

User Comments

1/28/10 Luisa Touching yet funny movie, love it! 4 stars
1/14/09 Anonymous. a happy, heartwarming film. :D 4 stars
3/11/07 Riki Still not sure about Diaz, but loved the rest 4 stars
3/06/07 Stanley Thai Not a chick flick that is very good. 5 stars
8/31/06 Carol Baker another chick flick Shirly Macclaine is in 3 stars
8/27/06 anthonyuk a nice heart warming film 4 stars
5/07/06 Diane Perkins didn't care for this movie, long and boring. Cameran Diaz not very likeable 2 stars
5/02/06 Ashley Hinz Nice film, but rather forgettable. 4 stars
12/07/05 Cedric OMG, near-bare glimpse of Cameron's kaka-kissers almost made me fancy her pupu good to eat! 4 stars
11/23/05 noops a nice simple story of love b/w 2 sisters 4 stars
10/23/05 Maalstrom A fullfilling sisterhood drama with some decent laughs 4 stars
10/18/05 Kurt its so seldom we laugh..this is one make you laugh and you walk out smiling... 5 stars
10/14/05 Suzz good film; elevates the genre 4 stars
10/14/05 Julie Wenders many genuine moments here and some of them are lingering to promote an active tear duct! 4 stars
10/11/05 rebecca it ok but could be a bit more better 3 stars
10/11/05 Josh Swanson Good movie, worth seeing, but the director has made better movies, just in different genres 4 stars
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  07-Oct-2005 (PG-13)
  DVD: 31-Jan-2006



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