Actors try to stay away from being type cast in certain types of characters. Bette Midler has played many female character that are brash, bossy and outspoken. That is perfectly fine with me.
In The First Wives Club (1996), she was part of a trio of middle aged women that included Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton. They were best friends in college, but life, as it does, took them in different directions. Then a friend commits suicide when her husband left her for a younger woman. Brought together by the fact that all three of their husbands have dumped them for younger wives, they want one thing: revenge.
I am also including the video for the classic Lesley Gore song “You Don’t Own Me” because it is just so cool and is a perfect addition to this movie.
The story of the younger woman and the older man has been told time and again throughout history. But we rarely hear of the older woman who was with the man during their youth and has recently been shoved aside for a younger and prettier model. It is even rarer for that woman to become powerful in her own right and stand on her own two feet.
In Then She Found Me (2007) April Epner (Helen Hunt) is not having an easy life. Her husband (Matthew Broderick) has just left her as soon as she finds out that they are expecting. Her adopted mother Trudy (Lynn Cohen), is disappointed that April has not achieved more in life. Add in a flirtation with Frank (Colin Firth), who is the father of one of April’s students and Bernice (Bette Midler), the birth mother that suddenly returns to her life.
What I like about this movie that it feels real. The reality is that sometimes the floor falls down on us and everything comes down with the floor. April’s journey is inspiring and a case of art imitating life.
I recommend both.