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Movie Reviews

Girl, Interrupted  

Cast
Susanna Kaysen (Winona Ryder)
Lisa (Angelina Jolie)
Georgina (Clea Duvall)
Nurse Valerie (Whoopi Goldberg)
Daisy (Brittany Murphy)
Polly (Elisabeth Moss)
Dr. Wick (Vanessa Redgrave)

Written for the screen and Directed by James Mangold
Rated R for strong language, drug content, sexuality and suicide
Running Time: 127 minutes Distributed by Columbia
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Girl, Interrupted is a moving and powerful film. In 1967, Susanna Kaysen (Ryder) is sent to Claymoore psychiatric hospital for attempting suicide. Susanna is a typical rebellious teenager during the time of revolution for the young. At Claymoore, Susanna loses herself into a world of seductive and disturbed young women. Among them is Lisa (Jolie), a charming sociopath, Daisy (Murphy), a pampered girl with a craving for rotisserie chicken and Polly (Moss), a kind burn victim. The girls are treated at Claymoore by the hospital's head psychiatrist, Dr. Wick (Redgrave) and a gentle and no-nonsense nurse, Valerie (Goldberg). As Susanna learns more and more about the people at Claymoore, she resolves to leave the world she is in to reclaim her life.

Girl, Interrupted is a mix of One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest and Now and Then. It is a strong story about a normalcy that many people are afraid to learn about. James Mangold directed and wrote Girl, Interrupted. Mangold's previous credits include Heavy and Copland. Mangold adapted the screenplay from Susanna Kaysen's real life novel of the same name. Mangold takes a different dramatic turn with the content of Girl, Interrupted. Mangold let's the characters loose to grow on you and to pull you more and more into the story.

Winona Ryder and Angelina Jolie are both incredible in this film. The two actresses bring forceful, but beautiful chemistry to their roles. After their dynamite work in this film, their names should go to the top of every director's cast list. Also, Whoopi Goldberg gives a great supporting performance as the gentle and pure ward nurse Valerie.

Girl Interrupted is a disturbing and somewhat frightening film. However, it is important and terrific storytelling by Susanna Kaysen. Audiences might click with this film, but if the film doesn't do well at the box office, still see it. It is a good movie with bold actresses performing at their best.

Report Card Grade: B+

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