Last Friday, Bobby's thoughts on The Help were featured on BBC Radio Five Live's flagship film programme: Mark Kermode and Simon Mayo's Film Review. Upon hearing it, we jumped around Bobbysix Towers like schoolgirls dancing to Bros (that's a contemporary pop reference, right?). Here's an elongated review:
The Help tells the story of an aspiring author (played by the ever-amazing Emma Stone) during the civil rights movement of the 1960's, who decides to write a book from the perspective of the many African-American maids that work for white families in the neighbourhood.
While this story of daily hardship, oppression, racism, friendship and morality is overt in its audience manipulation and certainly has both eyes focused firmly on The Oscars, the performances are fantastic, pretty much across the board. Stone especially continues to establish herself as a really fine actor and, to be honest, if she simply read from the phone book for a couple of hours, it would probably still be enrapturing. There are also fine, utterly believable turns from Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer.
A little long at 146 minutes, and clearly Oscar fodder, The Help may tug on the heart strings with mathematical precision, but tug on them it undoubtedly does.
Review by Bobby Townsend.