In Her Shoes (2005)


Once you know chronic problems faced by certain trades, you will notice how some projects reach to do some necessary thing. For instance, filming people around a dinner table is rarely done well, and almost never with great effect. So watch what the filmmaker does to change the geometry so that the shot can be other than ordinary.

There is a similar problem with the ordinary fold of “writer within”. This isn’t quite as ordinary a fold as the young person striving to give a good performance of some kind, but it is ordinary. In this fabulation, the story you are seeing has been written by one of the characters within. Often you are alerted to this fact by a voiceover at the beginning, telling you that this is remembered.

The problem is that in the story, you have to somehow introduce the fact that the character will become the writer. This fact is often shoehorned in using profound and uncomfortable stretches. This is a traditional redemption story, put in a woman’s context. The failed soul in question — and our candidate to be the writer — is a promiscuous drunk who selfishly destroys lives.

It is no surprise that she will be redeemed and that her relationship with her sister will be healed. The only suspense is in how they work in the writer angle. Here’s how: she is damaged because she is dyslexic, and is essentially unable to read. She ends up as a reader to a bedridden, blind, kindly professor of literature, who is patient as she reads and who teaches her the joys of the printed word. This mostly happens offscreen because the target audience is closer to the before than the after.

This experience, and the missing motherly love transform our lost girl into the writer of this affecting story. Diaz is typecast.

Posted in 2010

Ted’s Evaluation — 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.


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