An Old Story-A New Telling
The Help is a movie based on the best-selling book of the same name by Kathryn Stockett. Those of us who grew up in the 1960's, especially in the south, know the basis of this story very well. Although it does not take place during slavery times, it does take place during the early civil rights movement. A time of racial tension in America, and also a time of social awakening.
The story centers around Skeeter, played by Emma Stone, who although is not racist, is naive and unknowingly plays into the racism around her. It is a time in our society when the maids, and cooks, and nannies are ill-treated by their employers because of their skin color. Skeeter sees the abuse and it causes her to form an unlikely friendship with two of the help, and gives birth to a risky writing project.
The women form a sisterhood that enable them to break through the barriers that threatened to define them. They knew that things needed to change, and that they needed the courage to face the people around them who needed the change most.
They break all the rules and put themselves at great risk because it is during the time of the murders of Medgar Evers and Martin Luther King, Jr. Emotions are high. Yet Stockett imbues the characters with compassion and just the right touch of humor to keep it from being too heavy. Viola Davis as Aibileen, and Octavia Spencer as Minny are unforgettable.
This picture is a must-see. View the trailer and order the book while you wait for the movie's release in August.