Rating: Active Eruption
Best film of the fall 2005 season, hands down. This may be another Oscar-nominated performance for Charlize Theron, who plays a miner in northern Minnesota in the 1870s, when sexual harassment was rampant in most every industry in the country, but especially in nontraditional women's occupations such as mining. With a strong cast of other screen greats such as Frances McDormand, Sissy Spacek and Woody Harrelson, this is a true winner.
This is a fictional account of what was a landmark sexual harassment case in American history. Charlize plays Josey Aimes, whose father Sammy was a miner but who disapproves of Josey becoming one because he's ashamed of her for having a child out of wedlock, and women at the mine become a distraction for the men. Besides, it takes a job away from a more deserving man! Well, that sets the stage early on. We witness her struggle to fit in with and win over the other women miners and then starts to experience harassment and abuse at the hands of some men. Friend Glory (Frances McDormand) encourages her to a point, and then becomes quite ill, leaving Josey to fend for herself. Josey's family relationships are put to the test as she stands up to the mining company and then hires a lawyer (Woody Harrelson) to defend her.
Any woman who has been a victim of gender discrimination or harassment will find this especially interesting and can identify with the injustices and yet commonplace indifference toward these demoralizing acts on the part of the other gender and management.