Just Like A Woman (2013)
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Critic Reviews for Just Like A Woman
Like belly-dancing itself, this drama is meant for the soul, not the mind - or as Marilyn's instructor commands, "Brains! Stop using them!"
The problem with the film, directed by France's Rachid Bouchareb from a script by Joelle Touma and Marion Doussot, is that the men are mostly one-dimensional louts.
This well-intentioned buddy-road-trip flick lacks the danger, the drama and the sex appeal that most moviegoers will be looking for.
Just like its meaningless title, Rachid Bouchareb's disappointing drama evokes better works without developing any distinct identity of its own.
Bouchareb fails to turn his outsider's point of view into new insights, and instead takes the easy route, falling back on familiar stereotypes in his tour of US misogyny and xenophobia.
Audience Reviews for Just Like A Woman
At first glance you'd think this was about 2 very sexy women belly dancing but there's more to it than that. Sienna Miller plays a woman named Marilyn who's interested in belly dancing. After being fired from her job and discovering that her husband is cheating on her, she leaves with her friend Mona to go to Santa Fe to audition for a dance company. Mona is a North African immigrant who leaves her family after accidentally poisoning her mother-in-law. Marilyn is unaware of this at first. Together they drive from Chicago to Santa Fe and have a series of adventures. It reminded me a little bit like the movie Thelma and Louise but with a happy ending.
Twenty-three years ago (gulp!) two new names were engraved upon the minds/psyches of American theater audiences across the country that would never be forgotten. Those two names: Thelma and Louise. The only real similarity between T&L and Just Like a Woman is that the story features two women driving cross country in a convertible as they try to outrun a mistake they do not know how to rectify. T&L is a modern classic ... and should be seen. Just Like a Woman is not a classic nor will it ever be one ... and it isn't one I would be overly keen to recommend either as I doubt either woman will be nominated for an Oscar like both Thelma and Louise were! Sienna Miller (Factory Girl, Layer Cake) stars as Marilyn, a woman who decides to finally give in to temptation and enter a belly dance contest ... after she is let go from her job in Chicago and has to no longer be responsible-yet-unhappy. Before even leaving the city, Marilyn finds herself in the company of Mona -- a meek North African immigrant she is acquainted with - who needs to get out of the city. The two ladies come from different backgrounds but their common bonds and womanhood bring them closer together. As Mona's past begins to catch up with them, can their new friendship endure and will Marilyn's dream remain unattainable? The film is hokey and melodramatic but I didn't hate it when I watched it even though it was quite predictable ... although I will spoil the ending: there is no cliff!!
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