Ridley Scott is one of my favorite directors to follow. His direction has remained flawless with the stories and characters he has offered us over the past 25 years. I will admit that this is the first time that I’ve ever seen Thelma and Louise and seeing it play on the big screen is a pleasure to celebrate it’s 25th anniversary. Prior to seeing the film I’ve always heard that it was a feminist film, and upon hearing that I really didn’t understand what that meant. Once the film was over at that moment I understood.
Thelma and Louise stars Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon who both give outstanding performances. Both are two women who are bored with life, they do the same thing day after day. Louise (Susan Sarandon) is a waitress who just wants to get away for a couple of days while Thelma (Geena Davis) is a housewife who is stuck at home all day with a husband who doesn’t seem to pay her any attention. The ladies decide to take a trip up to the mountains to rent a cabin and just have some fun. Louise packs lightly while Thelma brings enough bags for a vacation and take off in a gorgeous 1966 Ford Thunderbird.
Everything goes well until Thelma wants to stop at a roadhouse to have a couple of drinks and loosen up. Louise is surprised that Thelma is drinking, because before that she was just another bored housewife who hasn’t had any fun. Thelma ends up dancing with a nice sounding, good-looking man; Louise even gets asked to dance with someone. The ladies are happy until Harlan, the man Thelma has been dancing with takes her outside and begins to sexually assault her. It’s terrifying to say the least as the world turns completely upside down.
Now they are outlaws on the run from the police. Thelma and Louise are scared at first but then to decide to have some fun. Bring in Harvey Keitel as the Detective hot on their trail and actually trying to understand these ladies. Are they really hardened criminals or just in the wrong place at the wrong time? Christopher McDonald is Thelma’s good for nothing and clueless husband, he plays the part perfectly along with that typical 90s mustache.
Brad Pitt makes quite a unique appearance as a drifter trying to get by. He runs into Thelma and Louise and plays an important part later on. Michael Madsen is great as Jimmy, who is very close with Louise. He does this thing when he squints his eyes, almost like a trademark expression, it’s awesome. The real stars of this picture is really Thelma and Louise as two ladies who embark on an adventure that no one could’ve prepared for. In a sense, it is a film about discovering who we really are, what we are capable of, and I suppose growing up.
Watching this film really brings back some old memories from the classic tunes on the radio, cassette tapes, and that mustache. Thelma and Louise went on to be nominated for 5 Academy Awards only walking away with one; Callie Khouri won Best Original Screenplay and rightfully so. In my opinion, I don’t really consider this a feminist film because I see these ladies as just regular people who are caught in a situation and make the best with what they’ve got, but kudos to the writer and Ridley Scott for giving a story with characters we all can relate to.
Thelma and Louise is a film that is filled with powerful performances, beautiful photography, solid direction, and a fantastic soundtrack. I understand that road movies were dominated by men but with this film we are given a story through a different set of eyes, the eyes through a female. It unique, it’s funny, and at times can even want to make you cry, but one thing is for sure, it’s one hell of a ride!