I Spent The Morning Revisiting The Film Stepmom Starring Susan Sarandon And Julia Roberts

I Spent The Morning Revisiting The Film Stepmom Starring Susan Sarandon And Julia Roberts

Length: 1129 words (3.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

I spent the afternoon revisiting the movie Stepmom starring Susan Sarandon and Julia Roberts. When the movie first was released, it was Christmas 1998. I was the stepmother to 2 stepdaughters and one stepson. In addition, I had added to our brood by becoming a biological mom to a daughter (3 years) and a baby boy (4 months). I had the crazy notion that maybe this would be a perfect movie for me to see with my two stepdaughters, Danielle and Nicole over the Christmas break from school. Both resisted, and I recall that I never did see the movie in the theaters. I ended up renting it and watching it alone on VHS several months later.

Stepmom is the story about the rocky relationship between Jackie (biological mom) and Isabel (soon-to-be stepmother). In the opening scene, Jackie, played by Sarandon, walks in on Isabel, played by Roberts, in a struggle with Jackie’s two children while attempting to get them ready for school. Jackie aloofly takes control of the situation and whisks the kids away while insulting Isabel’s lack of abilities. Thus sets the tone for the next hour and a half of the movie: mother insulting soon-to-be stepmom at every open opportunity.

When I first watched this movie nearly 17 years ago, I was watching through the lens of a stepmother. I was very defensive of the character of Isabel, becoming, at times irate with Jackie for insulting Isabel constantly. This was so commonplace that at one point her son, Ben (played by Liam Aiken), tells her that if she really wants him to hate Isabel, he will. At this point in the movie, I really expected the mother to realize the position she was putting her children in and try to mend her ways. But, alas, this does not happen and mom continues to insult poor Isabel to no ...


... middle of paper ...


...m is sick. Stepmom picks up the slack of mom during her illness. Mom and stepmom develop a mutual respect for each other, with the ending being a total tearjerker.

The movie has won several awards including Susan Sarandon’s performance nomination for a Golden Globe in 1999 for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture Drama. However, upon my second viewing, I found it to be lacking something. There was no closure, no setting up the stepmom as being heroic in anyway, which I guess is what I was hoping for when I wanted to view it with my stepdaughters. I was hoping that Hollywood had finally found a way to portray a stepmother as something other than evil and wicked. Instead, they never even had Isabel actually assume the role of stepmother since she never did get married during the course of the film. So, I guess the title is a little misleading, isn’t it?

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Film Noir: The Maltese falcon Essay

- Film Noir was extremely trendy during the 1940’s. People were captivated by the way it expresses a mood of disillusionment and indistinctness between good and evil. Film Noir have key elements; crime, mystery, an anti-hero, femme fatale, and chiaroscuro lighting and camera angles. The Maltese Falcon is an example of film noir because of the usage of camera angles, lighting and ominous settings, as well as sinister characters as Samuel Spade, the anti-hero on a quest for meaning, who encounters the death of his partner but does not show any signs of remorse but instead for his greed for riches....   [tags: Film]

Better Essays
973 words (2.8 pages)

Essay about Film Analysis : Film And Film

- Looking back on film’s past many argue that its roots lie in photography, however, the cinema of today has roots deeply entwined around montage. “The meaning is not in the image, it is in the shadow of the image projected by montage onto the field of consciousness of the spectator” (Bazin 26). This mentality is vital to the modern filmmaker. Montage taught the world that while the image is important it is the image’s effect on the audience, which holds the power of cinema. Film centers on visual communication with the audience....   [tags: Film, Film director, Orson Welles, Citizen Kane]

Better Essays
1268 words (3.6 pages)

Essay about Revisiting the Account of Sodom and Gomorrah

- Revisiting the Account of Sodom and Gomorrah Whatever the men of Sodom were up to, there is no question that it drew God’s wrath. According to pro-homosexual theologians, their sin had little or nothing to do with homosexuality, but with their inhospitality; their “callous indifference toward the weak and vulnerable – the poor, orphans, widows, and strangers in their midst” (Jeff Miner and John Tyler Conoley, The Children are Free, p. 6). There is some validity to this. For it is written, "Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had arrogance, abundant food and careless ease, but she did not help the poor and needy” (Ezekiel 16:49)....   [tags: Scripture Analysis]

Better Essays
1846 words (5.3 pages)

Essay on Roles And Roles Of The Film Industry

- In this realm of interviewing all sorts of people within the film industry. the stories and people never cease to amaze me. There is never one "right" path to becoming an actor and/or filmmaker, and that is absolutely true with Alexander Cooper. Labeling him as merely an actor does not begin to describe his passion for film, and recently he answered some questions concerning his career in the film industry as well as some of his current projects. elliot.jpg RH: Why did you decide to become an actor....   [tags: Film, Independent film, Sundance Film Festival]

Better Essays
1436 words (4.1 pages)

Historical Events in the Film Industry Essay

- The most frustrating thing about doing Viking age living history re-enactment is the questions that people ask: “why is your sword so light?” and of course, “where are your horns?” Repeatedly, these questions must be answered, but why do people have these images of past times anyway. Apart from Wagner’s fat lady singing opera with horns and a pointed bra, it is todays period films and television shows that lead people to believe these inaccuracies and ultimately provide a false lesson in history....   [tags: History, Film, Film Analysis, Historical Events]

Better Essays
1083 words (3.1 pages)

American Dream in the Film, The Pursuit of Happyness Essay examples

- Today, The American dream is not fully represented in the same way as the ideas were initially raised. The ideas were primarily fabricated in the very beginning of our country. The propagandist role of any medium has changed just as much as the times have since the signing of the Declaration of Independence. In contemporary America, film is the leading component of the propagation and detraction of the American dream. The film The Pursuit of Happyness (2005) supports the idea of the American dream our founding fathers set out....   [tags: Film Analysis ]

Better Essays
1275 words (3.6 pages)

Film Stereotyping In Film Essay

- “If you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all.” This is an audacious statement, especially with all the diversity life has to offer, within what context could a person persuasively use this statement. Stereotyping has been a problem in history. However, the consequences of stereotyping the repetitious nature of life has resulted in many original and useful transformations. While stereotyping is well known for its roots tied to ethnic background, race, sex, and even social class, we must not forget that stereotyping pays its ties apart from people....   [tags: Film, Sound film, Silent film, Sound stage]

Better Essays
1032 words (2.9 pages)

Sexism in Film Essay example

- In society, women are often perceived as the weaker sex, both physically and mentally. In modern times women have leveled the playing field between men and women, and feminism is a highly discussed topic, but for years, women faced discrimination and prejudice both in life and in the workplace, due to their sex. This way of thinking flooded into the world of film. In their works, the authors of each of the various sources address the limitations and liberations of women both on and off the screen in nineteenth century Film and Cinema....   [tags: Film]

Better Essays
1069 words (3.1 pages)

Mike Nichols' Film, Wit Essay

- Mike Nichols' Film, Wit In the film Wit, directed by Mike Nichols, Emma Thompson (Vivian Bearing) is portrayed as a woman professor who had dedicated her life to teaching and studying John Donne and his sonnets. She was about 48 years old and was diagnosed with stage IV ovarian cancer. This film showed us some of the hard decisions that Vivian had to make such as when she agrees to the radical and painful chemotherapy. The film showed us the changes she went through like in her body and mind (hair, weakness, weight, color etc.)....   [tags: Film Movies]

Better Essays
560 words (1.6 pages)

Stereotypes in the Film The Matrix Essay

- Stereotypes in the Film The Matrix The purpose of this paper is to expose some of the stereotypes present in the film The Matrix, directed by Andy and Larry Wachowski. In order to accomplish this we shall see that although The Matrix is considered to be a film about rebellion, it contains several stereotypical portrayals, which actually make it a film that supports the status quo. We shall also see that the African American characters in The Matrix (the Oracle, Tank, Dozer, and Morpheus) are all depicted in the stereotypical servant roles....   [tags: Movies Film Feminist Papers]

Better Essays
2401 words (6.9 pages)