Mining for a Class Action Lawsuit
Release Date: October 21, 2005
Starring: Charlize Theron, Frances
McDormand, Woody Harrelson,
Sean Bean, Sissy Spacek,
Richard Jenkins, and Thomas
Runtime: 126 minutes
Distributor: Warner Bros.
Director: Niki Caro
Executive Producer: Helen Bartlett, Nana
Greenwald, Doug Claybourne,
and Jeff Skoll
Producer: Nick Wechsler
Writer: Michael Seitzman
THE BOOK: CLASS ACTION: The
Landmark Case that Changes
Sexual Harassment Law by Clara
Bingham and Laura Leedy
Address Comments To:Barry M. Meyer, Chairman/CEO
Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
4000 Warner Blvd.
Burbank, CA 91522-0001
Phone: (818) 954-6000
Inspired by a true story, the movie stars Charlize Theron as Josey Aimes, a single mother of two separated from her wife-beating husband, the father of Child Number Two. Josey returns home to her parents in Northern Minnesota mining country, but she and her father don't get along because her first child was born out of wedlock during high school. Her father's hurt and disappointment are still palpable, even when the two are not talking to one another.
Encouraged by her old friend, Glory, one of the few female miners in town, Josey gets a well-paying job at the local mine where her father also works. This puts even more emotional distance between Josey and her father.
Josey doesn't mind the hard work at the mine, but the nasty harassment from the male miners proves to be too much. When Josey tries to speak out against them, the harassment increases, especially from Bobby Sharpe, a former high school boyfriend who shares a secret about the true father of Josey's first child, her son Sammy.
Things at work go from bad to worse. Josey finally enlists a handsome former attorney in town to sue the company and the union. The attorney sees the opportunity of producing a landmark class action lawsuit on sexual harassment in the workplace. They need two other female miners, however, to join the class action lawsuit, or the judge will throw out the case. This proves to be very difficult, because the other female miners are afraid of losing their own jobs.
NORTH COUNTRY sports a liberal, humanist and feminist view of the subject of sexual harassment. It even makes a point several times of giving support to Anita Hill's unproven charges of sexual harassment against Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
Ironically, however, the movie also contains a scene that delivers a subtle, but powerful, message against abortion. In the scene, Theron's character Josey tells her son Sammy that, although he was the product of a vicious rape, she decided to keep him and love him because the baby in her womb was not responsible for the rape.
This pro-life message is slightly muted by an indication that the issue of keeping the baby or not was a choice that Theron's character made for herself, but the message should encourage women who see it not to abort their babies, even if they have been raped.
MOVIEGUIDE® wonders, however, if this pro-life message will get lost in the movie's obvious pandering to the radical feminists supporting Anita Hill's bizarre, unconfirmed charges against Thomas.
Hypocritically, most of those same feminists and liberals who were so vocal when it came to supporting Anita Hill's testimony about sexual harassment against a Supreme Copurt nominee appointed by a Republican president suddenly went AWOL when women made charges of sexual harassment and even rape against President Bill Clinton, a liberal Democrat. What was good for the goose wasn’t good for the gander.
Despite the pro-life message in one scene, NORTH COUNTRY’s support of Anita Hill’s testimony dominates the story. The movie also contains strong sexual language and many gratuitous vulgarities that are often incidental to the telling of this story. The movie's worldview not only is feminist, it is also humanist. For example, instead of turning to God and His biblical principles, or to the Church, to fight the evil men harassing her, the heroine turns to an increasingly secular, politically correct legal system. Because of lawsuits like the one shown in this movie, the legal system has become so politically correct and onerous that it is now inimical to decent relationships among all people, not just relationships between men and women.
No one needs a pro-feminist movie about the plight of women from Hollywood any more. What people really need is a movie protecting us from the radical feminism running rampant all around us. It would be nice, for instance (and morally awesome), if Hollywood made a really strong pro-life movie against abortion. Now, that would be really pushing the envelope, but in a positive direction!
All in all, therefore, the content in NORTH COUNTRY is excessively gratuitous and problematic.
Moviegoers must be media wise about all movies or television programs, including a political movie like NORTH COUNTRY. Be careful what you watch. You can do this by consulting MOVIEGUIDE® regularly.
Despite a pro-life message in one scene, NORTH COUNTRY sports a liberal, humanist, feminist view of sexual harassment. The movie also contains strong sexual content and many gratuitous vulgarities that are often incidental to the telling of the story. Furthermore, instead of turning to God and His biblical principles, or to the Church, to fight the evil men harassing her, the heroine turns to a secular, runaway legal system. All things considered, the content in NORTH COUNTRY is excessive and problematic.