Sunday, November 02, 2003

Ugh! My new nanny is a fashion victim!

Uptown Girls is one of those movies that bound to surprise you in ways you'd be totally unprepared for, this one was the movie we watched at the Rockwell Mall. The family outing was long overdue and we all deserved a rest from the stressful city life. We caught the first showing and at first we were torn between watching Identity, The Boss' Daughter, or this one. My Mom insisted we catch this one since it was the latest and we didn't have our luch yet at the time. Good thing she insisted that we see this one or else I would have missed a really great movie. The story starts like how fairy tales do: Once upon a time there was a rich orphan girl named Molly (Brittany Murphy) who lived like a spoiled princess off her parents' wealth. She's the only child of a rock and roll legend who died in a plane crash along with her mother when she was between 8 and 9 years old. She lived the way she wanted, waking up at nearly 10 in the evening just to attend parties along with her friends. She neither cared whether her house was in order nor does she worry what tomorrow might bring. She had everything she wanted in the whole wide world (powerful friends, established recording artists pandered to her left and right). On her twenty-second birthday God stepped into her life (ok, he wasn't mentioned anywhere in the movie). On her birthday celebration inside a posh club she crossed paths with Ray (brilliantly played by Dakota Fanning), a very serious 8 year old with the mind and disposition of a surly New Yorker adult. She's the daughter of an ultra-successful recording studio owner (think Tommy Mottola but looks a lot like Heather Locklear). Unfortunately for Molly, her trusted money manager ran off with her $10 million account to South America leaving her penniless. In the meantime she stays with her best friend and tries an assortment of jobs just to help her pay half of the rent. But since she didn't take her job seriously she was fired from it. Desperate for any kind of employment she went ahead and hired herself as a nanny to Ray. And that's where it all starts...

The movie is really, really fine and what we expected to be one ditzy movie turned out to be an instant classic in my book. Dakota Fanning has this knack for choosing roles in movies that is guaranteed to not only make you cry, but to impart some lessons as well. This time the movie imparts the important lesson of letting go. Molly had to go above each and every disappointment that came her way like the time she lost her money, then best friend, her loverboy betrayed her, she lost her apartment, and she had to let go of her Dad's guitars (her only link to the past) but for each disappointment she found the necessary strength to go and these same lessons she learned she imparted to her young ward. She was the first one that had to be broken in order for Rae to start the process of grieving. They found their redemption in the middle of their friendship and though the roads ahead where still bumpy and unpredictable they knew they could still count on each other to see them through. A guaranteed tear jerker, a great date and friends movie.

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