Divine Secrets Of The Ya-Ya Sisterhood

0
0
Subscribe to Sandra Bullock alerts

Facts and Figures

Run time: 116 mins

In Theaters: Friday 7th June 2002

Box Office USA: $69.5M

Distributed by: Warner Bros. Pictures

Production compaines: Warner Bros. Pictures, All Girl Productions, Gaylord Productions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 44%
Fresh: 63 Rotten: 81

IMDB: 5.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: Sandra Bullock as Siddalee 'Sidda' Walker, Ellen Burstyn as Viviane Joan 'Vivi' Abbott Walker, Fionnula Flanagan as 'Teensy' Melissa Whitman, James Garner as Shepard James 'Shep' Walker, Cherry Jones as Grandma 'Buggy' Abbott, Ashley Judd as Younger Vivi Abbott Walker, Maggie Smith as Caro Eliza Bennett, Shirley Knight as Necie Rose Kelleher, Angus Macfadyen as Connor McGill

Divine Secrets Of The Ya-Ya Sisterhood Movie Review


Are you disappointed that the Grumpy Old Men franchise died with stars Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon? Never fear. The familiar formula has been slightly doctored, recast, and relocated from Minnesota to Louisiana in Callie Khouri's Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, though Sassy Old Women certainly seems a more appropriate title.

Being neither a mother, daughter, nor woman at all, I acknowledge the fact that I'm not 100% qualified to comment on Sisterhood. I did trudge through it, though, which instantly earns me the type of respect normally bestowed on veterans of a vicious war. Just be warned. A self-proclaimed celebration of the feminine spirit, this story, this film... hell, the actual theater showing this film is no place for any transporter of testosterone.

Ya-Ya boasts a cult literary fan base that rivals that of the comic geeks and sci-fi sickos who slept out for Spider-Man and Episode II. Their armies aren't nearly as large, but their passion for Rebecca Wells' best-selling novel runs just as deep. Wells' story follows four female characters through three different decades, though it starts in the present day with Siddalee Walker (Sandra Bullock).

A N.Y.-based playwright, Sidda pulls the band-aid off of a simmering feud with her mother, Vivi Abbott Walker (Ellen Burstyn), when she throws open the door to the family's skeleton-ridden closet in an interview published in Time magazine. Sidda's "truth hurts" tirade sends self-centered Vivi into a tailspin that her circle of friends, known collectively as the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, seeks to terminate. The renegade Ya-Yas kidnap, drug, and drag Sidda back to Louisiana, hoping some rest and reminiscing will clear her aggressions and trigger the natural flow of affection for her lunatic mom.

Resistance, Sidda learns, is futile. Various flashbacks lead us to believe that when united, the Ya-Ya Sisterhood enjoys invincibility. As children on a trip to Atlanta for the premiere of Gone With the Wind, the young Ya-Yas encounter racism in the home, which they quickly douse with their sharp wit and sassy barbs. They're almost like a miniature Justice League of America. Form of ... a civil rights activist!

Three generations of actresses were recruited to play the Ya-Ya Sisterhood through the years, though the ladies in the Vivi role (Caitlin Wachs, Ashley Judd, and Burstyn) are written the juiciest dilemmas. As aged Ya-Yas, Dame Maggie Smith (a Brit) and Fionnula Flanagan (a Leprechaun) spout sharp one-liners, but they're so focused on delivering them with precision that they forget to maintain their already questionable Southern accents. As a result, the second half of the film - set entirely in Louisiana - loses its Southern ambiance and distinct local panache.

The charming Angus MacFayden actually tugs and tosses his role as Sidda's frustrated fiancée Connor in multiple directions until a character forms from scraps of frustration and anxiety. Poor James Garner is not as successful as Shep Walker, a kindred soul occupying a position underneath Vivi's ten-inch boot heel. The veteran actor, given extremely little to do, couldn't look more bored.

Sisterhood constantly hints at a tragedy in Vivi's past that has resulted in her inability to love. Had Sidda confronted her mother the minute she woke up in the Bayou, there's a chance we might've been saved the time and torture it takes to get to what's ultimately a disappointing conclusion. Instead, a conflict between two people gets resolved by a party of mediators, leaving the feuding family members few options but to kiss, make up, and sweep their past digressions underneath the rug. Therapy? Who needs it? Pour yourself another sloe gin fizz and let the Ya-Yas chase your blues away.

The Ya-Ya DVD includes a number of deleted scenes, notably the sequence where young Vivi is sent to a parochial school and is later rescured by the Ya-Yas. Two commentary tracks add the usual self-congratulatory hokum.

Ta-ta's.


Contactmusic

0
0
Subscribe to Sandra Bullock alerts

Comments

Divine Secrets Of The Ya-Ya Sisterhood Rating

" Grim "

Advertisement

More Sandra Bullock

Entourage Trailer

After making a name for themselves in Hollywood, Vincent Chase and his entourage of friends from Queens have finally made a movie. The only problem...

Bastille - Things We Lost In The Fire [Live] Video

Live on the Honda Stage at Music Midtown in Atlanta, Bastille perform 'Things We Lost In The Fire', the final single from their debut album...

Bastille - Oblivion [Live] Video

Bastille perform their single 'Oblivion' live on the Honda Stage at Music Midtown in Atlanta. The track followed Platinum hit 'Of The Night' and featured...

HAERTS - Interview Video

Brooklyn band Haerts released their self-titled debut album this year, and here they talk about how they first got into music, their lifelong friendship and...

Advertisement

Mark Ronson - Daffodils ft. Kevin Parker [Audio] Video

Mark Ronson will finally unveil his fourth album 'Uptown Special' on January 26th 2015 through his new label deal with Sony Music. He has teamed...

Meghan Trainor - Lips Are Movin [Live] Video

Meghan Trainor performs her latest single 'Lips Are Movin' at one of her favourite places in the world: an aquarium. The song features, alongside smash...

HAERTS - Be The One [Live] Video

Haerts perform an intimate live rendition of their song 'Be The One', taken from their self-titled debut album released in October 2014 through Columbia Records....

ScHoolboy Q - Hell Of A Night Video

ScHoolboy Q released his first number one with third album 'Oxymoron', and he now unveils the video to its latest single 'Hell Of A Night'...

Advertisement