My first thought about Thelma & Louise was this: Ridley Scott directed this? A light-hearted road trip buddy romp of a film is not the first thing to come to mind when one thinks of the director of Alien and Blade Runner. Nevertheless, as anyone who knows of the film is aware of, the story quickly takes a darker turn, albeit one with a honker of an ever-present silver lining. This is really a positive, uplifting film, despite its overall story and plot turns.
The script and the acting are the core selling points of the film, and both are in a league of their own. The film is very unassuming, content to let pass what happens on the screen without glorifying it or adding any shiny baubles or glitzy glamor to it. The strength of the script and the acting along is what carries the film. The script is very simple, but very dense, and the characters each have their own voices and characterizations; the characters aren’t all the same, written in the same way with the same speech, they all have their ways about them. The story kind of meanders a bit, and it sags in the middle from the lack of direction, but the film’s opening and ending segments are just about perfect.
Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis were both nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress, a rare double-nom feat, and both deserved the accolades they got; both women are so fully into their characters that they don’t ever once seem like they’re acting, which as I’ve said before is the hallmark of great acting for me. Still, I can’t imagine how a film with an ending like this can be so damn feel-good right down to the closing shot, but this film manages it with ease. I’d say to watch this for the acting and the script, and to add a bit of a negative point, that’d be all I could say to watch the film for, but the film is still very well done and the finished product is well put together. Just be prepared for a film that isn’t as attention-grabbing as most of today’s movies, and you should be all right with this one.
Arbitrary Rating: 8/10