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Movie Review of "Friends with Money"

Updated on February 22, 2022
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Nyamweya is a Kenyan scholar who has done many years of research on a diversity of topics.

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"Friends with Money" is a film produced by Nicole Holofcener in 2006. The film which is largely female-centric inquires what happens when a person falls out of his or her own social circle. The film specifically paints a convincing and witty portrait of how longtime bonds can be broken by a disparity in personal spending power. Twelve years later, at a period when the wealth gap between the upper class, middle class, and the lower class in the United States is widening, the film Friends with Money still remains to be relevant in the social and economic environment.

Holofcener’s drama-comedy centers around four women in Los Angeles who are in their middle-age years. The four women are depicted as being close to one another for some moment before this relationship is broken up. Franny is a housewife but lives lavishly by a good family trust fund. Jane makes a living by designing floaty women’s clothing which she sells at exorbitant prices. On the other hand, Christine is a TV screenwriter which enables her to leave a comfortable life. The fourth woman, Olivia is a single woman who pays her bill by cleaning for other people within the neighborhood. This is after abandoning her job as a teacher because it was “intolerable”

Notably, the film’s core message is the inability of money to buy happiness. For instance, among the four women, Fanny seems to be a content woman considering that the family has more than enough and she does not need to work. However, despite having much money which they spend lavishly, there is no intimacy between her and her husband. They are also seen arguing a lot about overuse and misuse of money and other petty issues. In the meantime, Jane and Christine are going through problems that cannot be solved by cash. In particular, Christine’s husband is overly critical and cold. On the other hand, Jane’s husband appears to be affectionate, but possibly gay. Olivia is struggling to get money because she has less of it. However, she seems to be having low self-esteem because of her financial situation. Due to this low self –esteem she hooks up with a married man with who she goes on to have an affair. She is also confused about what she wants to do with her life or what her particular calling in life is. She eventually involves herself with Franny’s douchey in sexual endeavors and starts asking him for financial handouts. However, these requests and financial demands lead to fallout.

Similar to the scene depicted above, there are many single women who can be compared with Olivia as it pertains to the kind of life they are living. Indeed, there are some in society who do not know what to do with their lives. In other words, they do not understand what their calling actually is. These women having been frustrated in life can do anything including having affairs with married men. However, they end up regretting the decisions they make.

The story in the film Friends with Money is more interesting in the changing dynamics among women in real-life contexts. In this case, money or wealth for this matter becomes the obstacle and a subject of rift between and among the women. Despite the four women having been friends for a long time, they eventually separate one of them Olivia because she is doing a lowly job that pays her less money. Apart from the money issue, Olivia is also unmarried while all her friends are married. Therefore, these makes the women consider her as not being one of them owing to her status.

Conclusively, Holofcener’s movie identifies money as the new center of things. Many people in the present society are interested in nothing else except money. Moreover, people are classifying themselves together based on their wealth. Even in the current society, people with money cannot associate themselves with those who do not have. It is the new sex in the sense that people adore it even more than sex. In the current perspective, people are striving to accumulating wealth as much as they can. Despite this ecstasy for money, it is ironical that money cannot buy everything nor can it solve all issues. For instance, it cannot buy love portrayed by those women who are in the married issues. Despite being well off, these women have marital and personal issues they are dealing with. The film essentially provides a great lesson to readers that although the current society is focused on wealth and money at the expense of relationships, money cannot solve everything in life. Therefore, it may be futile to concentrate on money endeavors alone.


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