CALENDAR GIRLS is a true story about a group of prim and proper middle-aged English ladies of a local women’s club who took off their clothes for charity and became instant celebrities. Filled with a renowned cast of British actresses, it is a fairly entertaining movie suffering from a thin story.
Julie Walters (the ballet teacher in BILLY ELIOT and Mrs. Weasley in the HARRY POTTER movies) plays Annie, who finds out that her beloved husband, John, has leukemia. Helen Mirren plays Annie’s close friend Chris, who spends time in the uncomfortable hospital waiting room with her friend while John gets treated.
Unhappily, John does not survive. To honor her friend’s husband, Chris suggests that the Women’s Institute use its annual calendar to raise money to buy new furniture for the hospital waiting room. To make sure that the calendar raises enough money, she suggests that the women appear nude in the calendar. This causes an uproar, but the women’s club eventually goes along with the idea. The women become instant celebrities, but their newfound fame puts a strain on Chris and Annie’s relationship.
CALENDAR GIRLS has its funny and poignant moments, so it may find a big audience. The story is a bit thin and ultimately forgettable, however, were it not for the satirical scenes of middle-aged women posing nude. Also, the message of the movie is that the end justifies the means. The women raise a lot of money for the fight against leukemia and are still raising a lot of money, but they have to violate God’s moral principles to do it. This is a very bad message to send to anyone, even adults.
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Michael Eisner, Chairman/CEO
Buena Vista Distribution Co.
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Dick Cook, Chairman
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SUMMARY: CALENDAR GIRLS is a true story about a group of prim and proper middle-aged English ladies of a local women’s club who took off their clothes for charity and became instant celebrities. CALENDAR GIRLS has its funny and poignant moments, but the story is a bit thin and the movie sends a bad message that the end justifies the means.
(Ro, B, Ab, C, LLL, S, NN, A, D, M) Light Romantic worldview with some moral elements about the trappings of fame, but movie strongly suggests that the ends justifies the means, with brief scenes set in Christian church, but church organist takes part in nude calendar for charity; 17 mostly light obscenities and nine light profanities; no violence; some light sexual content, including a couple smutty comments; scenes of upper female nudity as middle-aged women do nude calendar to raise money for charity; alcohol use; smoking and reference to marijuana; and, social norms are attacked.