Anne Hathaway is either really on point or really not. There is no in between. Starting with her star-making performance as “Mia Thermopolis” in Disney’s THE PRINCESS DIARIES, Hathaway ranges from not her-best-work like her leading role in THE INTERN or quite literally Academy Award winning gold like her turn as “Fantine” in LES MISERABLES. Like I said, there is no in between.
So when I read that Colossal was a film that finally put Hathaway back on the map after her post-Oscar-win downfall, I knew that I had to go see it.
Hathaway plays “Gloria,” a woman in her early thirties that has been
unable to find stable employment, is a bonafide alcoholic, and was thrown out of her boyfriend’s apartment. She decides to return to her hometown and take up residence in her childhood home, one that her parents still own but do not currently reside in. She reconnects with an old friend named “Oscar,” played by Saturday Night Live alum Jason Sudeikis, and he gives her a job bartending at his bar. One morning, Gloria wakes up at the school playground. Simultaneously, a giant lizard monster appears to terrify Seoul, South Korea. Soon, Gloria realizes that this monster does everything that she does. In a sense, the monster and Gloria are one.
Gloria is an amalgamation of “Mia Thermpolis” and “Kym” from RACHEL GETTING MARRIED. She is a hot mess who just cannot seem to get her alcoholism under control. As she strives to be better for her ex-boyfriend, played by the oh-so-beautiful Dan Stevens, Gloria gets dangerously close to Oscar. If you asked my mother, who I senselessly drug to this film knowing that she would hate it, she would say, “Anne Hathaway was sad from start to finish. I hated that character because she was just sad.” That is just it. Gloria is sad. But, you know what, by the end of it, Gloria learns how to fend for herself and stand up her demons. This transformation is why everyone has been raving about Hathaway’s performance, and why I am joining the choir.
To me, however, Hathaway’s performance was not the best part of the film. The ending shows a woman who triumphs over domestic violence and addiction. This character can be seen in almost every woman who dares to walk the Earth. An unsettling observation, almost everyone has dealt with abuse, trauma, depression, addiction, or some other personal issue in their life time. Seeing a character on screen triumph over that is rare and appreciated. Instead of leaving the theater with sadness like my mother, I left with hope. This might be a monster film, but it is also one about picking yourself up when the world feels like it is against you, staring that evil in the face, and saying, “Not today. I am in control.”
While the first half of the film was a slow, it picked up by the end. Thanks to a powerful message and a stellar performance by Hathaway, there is no question why people have been raving about COLOSSAL. Go see the film, and find the courage to face your own monsters.
Woman-O-Meter: 6 Pumps
How did we rate this? http://www.suzeebehindthescenes.com/2017/03/rating-womens-films-woman-o-meter-seeks.htmlPhotos Courtesy IMDB