Sleepovers and movie nights in the twenties were a whole lot of fun. Remember those night-long conversations about crushes, boys, bossy colleagues, annoying exes, and notes on favorite songs, books, nail colors, and shoes? The thirties are a lot like twenties, but only better. Men still occupy some of our conversations, but not all. Between loud guffaws, fashion updates, commenting on each other's pictures, deeper conversations about life begin to slip.
Conversations about what we really want to do with our lives, about choosing between what we love and what we ought to do, understanding that nothing is black or white and that a palette full of different greys in between, and nothing that seems right is really right and nothing that seems wrong is all that bad.
Well, here's our pick of movies that will make you nod along in wisdom and trigger some of those endless conversations as 30 something women.
1. Under the Tuscan Sun
This story's covers a little bit of everything that thirties is about. A heartbreak that sets the lead (played by Diane Lane) onto a journey of exploration, beautiful countrysides in Italy, charming locals, freshly made gourmet meals, self-reflection, weird moments with strangers, and finding oneself in a place far away from home. It's visually delightful to watch gorgeous Italian farms, cottages, friendly faces of strangers and tugs you to trust that the world is indeed a good place to place your trust on.
Save this one for a day or night you are ready to be charged up to talk about gender and social norms. The story revolves around a woman whose beauty is her curse. The hormone-ridden fantasies of teenagers, the lust of older married men, the jealousy of other women, the loneliness caused by war, everything envelopes this gorgeous lady every single day. Seen through the eyes of a young boy, the film explores questions about the subtleties of being a woman in a male-dominated world, with barely any words uttered by the leading lady.
3. It's Complicated
A middle-aged, ex-couple end up having an affair, while the woman finds herself attracted to another man. Well, the plot isn't all that unpredictable, but the cast makes up for it. Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin, and Steve Martin share through their characters snippets of how relationships work in a decade that we are heading toward.
4. Vicky Christina Barcelona
This is worth a second watch with your girlfriends, even if you have watched it already. Apart from the fact that it is directed by a veteran and has absolutely delectable looking people (Scarlett Johansson, Penelope Cruz, Rebecca Hall, and Javier Bardem) playing the lead roles, the movie is shot in the quaint city of Barcelona. The film explores the questions that haunt every 30-year-old: figuring out what you really want, choosing between what's new, exciting and possibly self-exploratory VS what we take comfort in and want to fall back on. The story of desire, love (well, maybe summer love), and being honest with oneself is depicted through intriguing artists and the odd poetry their lives are.
5. Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont
When an elderly widower (played by Joan Plowright) moves to a hotel in London to live an independent life and find her estranged grandson, she comes across a young writer (played by Rupert Friend). The two develop an unlikely friendship giving the audience to observe the subtleties involved in the idea of love as one ages. Universal themes like the phases of love, the human need for validation, and the respect that can grow between complete strangers are depicted by two powerful characters.
6. Calendar Girls
Again, it's unlikely that you and your friends may not have watched this classic British comedy. However, watching a bunch of earnest middle-aged women go nude for a cause they believe in makes it a perfect movie to watch with your girlfriends. The story explores friendships that have lasted for decades and survived through losses, deaths, sickness, and quarrels.
7. Working Girl
Made in the 80s, the movie tackles themes that exist very much in today's corporate world. A mean boss steals a secretary's idea without giving due credit, which causes a trusting young girl to exact revenge. While you might not agree with the ways of the two women, watching it now gives us a glimpse of what it was to have been working woman three decades ago.
8. In the Times of the Butterflies
This movie, based on the novel of the same name, depicts the real story of Mirabal sisters, known as the Butterflies, who stood brave and strong against the dictator Rafael Trujillo. Set in 20th century Dominican Republic, the movie is sure to inspire and intrigue you as you move along the tale of the sisters who embraced their softer side without compromising their fierce strength. Although the movie has a political framework, the story carries the warmth of a personal and intimate journey.
9. Steel Magnolias
Here's a story of girlfriends who share styling tips, food, gossip and more as they sail through life's comforting certainties and unpredicted tragedies. The plot revolves around a mother (Sally Field) of a bride-to-be (Julia Roberts), a salon-owning friend(Dolly Parton), and an aspiring beautician (Daryl Hannah). Set in a little town, the movie celebrates the friendship between women who've seen many storms but refuse to lose their zest for life.
Based on the real-life story of the renowned artist, Frida Kahlo, the movie explores the psyche and heart of a beautiful, restless, courageous woman who used her art to express her deepest angst and grandest dreams. The plot on the surface revolves around Frida's (played by Salma Hayek) journey through her injuries, her complex and unstable relationship with her husband, Diego Rivera (played by Alfred Molin) her discovery of America. But the underlying story dwells on a restless artists self-exploration and expression through art, sexuality, love, fashion, and search for meaning.
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