A twice-divorced mother of three who sees an injustice, takes on the bad guy and wins -- with a little help from her push-up bra. Erin goes to work for an attorney and comes across medical records describing illnesses clustered in one nearby town. She starts investigating and soon exposes a monumental cover-up.
For the first time in my life, I got people respecting me. Please, don't ask me to give it up.
The film is based on a real case and is about real people so to that ends it is obviously simple in structure, and nagging away as you watch it is the fact that the ending is never in doubt, it "is" all too predictable. However, what made Erin Brockovich the success it was is that the title character is not only interesting but also, importantly, intriguing. A foul mouthed hard bitten, twice divorced mother of three has to fight her corner just to get an honest days pay. It's a fabulous story backed up by a simply incredible performance from Julia Roberts. Here Roberts has let her hair down, puts on a push up bra and a short skirt, she is clearly enjoying the freedom of the role, and the results are real effective.
I have no doubt that working alongside Albert Finney helped Roberts no ends, but it is her show all the way, and she alone masks over what really is an ordinary film, there is nothing we haven't seen before here, it's just a more modern take on the good versus evil corporate company scenario. It's steadily directed by Steven Soderbergh, emotional scenes are not overstretched to treacle point, and all in all it's good solid story telling. Repeat viewings prove to dilute the uplift factor of the finale, but Roberts' performance certainly holds firm for evermore.
8/10 for the film, 10/10 for Roberts' ballsy show. If only we could have had more of these performances from her.
Jersey Films by Steven Soderbergh, Susannah Grant.
Stars: Julia Roberts, Albert Finney, David Brisbin.
Genres: Biography, Drama
Keywords: biography based on a true story single mother water pollution environmental law legal drama corporate negligence
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