Throwback Thursday: Drop Dead Gorgeous (1999)

In the world of beauty competitions, the ultimate goal is to win. For some contestants and their handlers, that means resorting to tactics that break a few rules.

In the 1999 movie, Drop Dead Gorgeous, a small town in Minnesota is preparing for their annual beauty pageant. Gladys Leeman (Kirstie Alley) is the matriarch of the wealthiest family in town. She will do anything (and I mean anything) to ensure that her daughter Becky (Denise Richards) comes out on top.

But Becky has a rival in Amber Atkins (Kirsten Dunst), whose mother Annette (Ellen Barkin), is equally as eager to see her daughter take the crown. Before the winner is announced there will be some roadblocks along the way. One of which maybe a dead body.

It’s not quite a satire, but it has elements of the genre. What I remember about the movie is that is both entertaining and a treatise of how we treat young women. If all they learn is that their looks are the most important thing in life, what will their expectations be for the rest of their lives?

I recommend it.


In Her Shoes Book Review

Having a sibling, especially a sister, is a tricky thing. She could either be your best friend or the person you can barely tolerate, but have to for the sake of your parents or your family.

In 2003, Jennifer Weiner published In Her Shoes. Maggie and Rose Feller are sisters, but are as different as night and day. Maggie is drop dead gorgeous, but has drifted in life. Her elder sister Rose is college educated and has a successful career as a lawyer, but her self esteem is in the dumps. The only thing they have in common is shoes. Rose’s career allows her to buy as many shoes as she likes, but she hides them in her closet. Maggie finds her sister’s shoes and happily wears them to Rose’s chagrin. Their relationship is nearly broken when Maggie sleeps with Rose’s boyfriend. Then they discover the maternal grandmother whom they have never met and the family secrets that have been buried for a very long time.

Last week, I wrote a Throwback Thursday post about the movie adaptation of this book. I got around to reading the book this week.  The book is quite hefty plot wise for what is essentially a light read. Maybe it’s because I saw the movie first, but I feel like the author could have trimmed the plot a little. It’s not uncommon that when a book is made into a movie, changes are made. But the book didn’t do it for me like the movie did.

Do I recommend it? Maybe.


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