What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that there is a smattering of strong language and some implied sex (but no nudity). The film also deals with the parent of a young child dying, a theme that might be upsetting for some kids. This movie is a tearjerker, so know your kid before you watch.
What's the story?
BEACHES is the story of the long friendship between WASPy rich girl Hillary (Barbara Hershey) and Bronx-born performer CC (Bette Midler), who first meet on the boardwalk in Atlantic City when they're 11. Sassy CC comes from the other side of the tracks compared to well-heeled Hillary, but the girls become loyal friends despite their differences. Each learns and benefits from the other – CC draws Hillary out of her shell, and Hillary keeps flighty CC grounded. The women ride out the highs and lows of life, fight and make up, marry, and divorce. And 20 years after they first met, they come together in a California beach house to face their biggest challenge.
Is it any good?
When you start listing chick flicks, you won't get far without someone mentioning Beaches, a true tearjerker. It's rather formulaic, but the strength and solidity of Hillary and CC's connection will touch anyone who's ever had a friend, and no matter how absurd the movie becomes –- no neophyte Broadway star could ever afford to lease an apartment like the one CC gets –- viewers will be caught up in the emotion of their story.
The performances are somewhat pedestrian, with the exception of Mayim Bialik, who plays the young CC. Her energy outshines almost everything that follows –- she was born to play the young Bette Midler. This isn't a great film, but it's fun in a weepy way, and would make great viewing for mothers and daughters on a girls' night in, assuming that the daughters could handle the emotional intensity. Dads and brothers will probably find that, like the men in the film, they are more or less left on the sidelines.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the value of friendship, and how Hillary and CC's relationship changes over the years. How do their career and relationship choices affect their friendship? Is the movie a realistic portrayal of friendship? How do the women's relationships with men change their connection to each other?