This film should come with a warning, stating “if you feel slightly depressed then do not watch this film” or maybe? This film might cheer you up because it may make you realise that life isn’t that bad for you after all. This isn’t probably the best way to start off this review because despite the depressive and dark to this film it is probably the best film in terms of performances 2013 and 2014. I think this should be up there with 12 years a slave, Gravity and American hustle. This is coming from the converted as I had no real interest in seeing the film beforehand. The trailer really didn’t reach out to me and although I think Meryl Streep is an amazing actress, I have never really been into her films. I think she is definitely up there with the likes of Bette Davis and Catherine Hepburn, you don’t get 18 Oscar nominations for being an amateur.
The film is based around a very dysfunctional family in Osage County with Meryl Streeps character being the most dysfunctional and head. There is no doubt that she is in charge and everyone knows it. A funny incident came at dinner when she remarked that the men had taken their suit jackets off, they soon sheepishly followed orders and put them back on. The family are brought together by tragedy, which leads to an uncomfortable stay at mum’s house. Each member has their own issues, which all goes back to the way their mum behaves and how they were brought up. This leads to a lot of arguments, truth telling and uncomfortable/ shocking revelations.
The three daughters barely have a relationship and there is plenty of resentment, although deep down there is love for one another. Julia Roberts is the strong willed sister who takes charge, doesn’t mince her words and is struggling to keep her marriage together. This is the future head of the family and even more mum has to take note. This being shown in the hilarious “fish scene”. Julia Roberts shows real emotion in this film and I think this is one of her best ever performances. The anger really hits you and the sad realisation at the end really makes you sad.
All three daughters are different, Juliet Lewis plays the tarty sister with a flash boyfriend who is trying to find love, but never finds the right man.she is desperate to gain recognition and love from her mum, but always gets pushed aside. You can really feel the pain as each slight from her mum meets her every aspiration. Another great performance!
Jullianne Nicholson plays the daughter who stayed in Osage, the dependable one who will never find a man. The one that is always there when things go wrong, but is seen as the weak one. She does find love, but unfortunately the complications are beyond any realm we could imagine. She dreams of finally getting away and feels bitter at being left behind by her other sisters.
All the characters have their own woes and weaknesses which leads to a very interesting dinner table. You feel like you are sitting there yourself as you get drawn into the conversations, that can be vicious, funny, sad and brutal. You are the quiet one observing and taking in what is happening, having to control your laughter at times because it might be deemed to be inappropriate.
This is a must see film with so many great performances! It’s a real insight to human nature and the end is given to you to decide.