Reversed gender stereotypes in “Notting Hill”


As you’ve probably noticed #rinsebeforeuse is not discriminatory in its reviews. We write about new movies but also about old classics. Today you can read about a surprisingly unconventional love story “Notting Hill”.

The movie was made in times when Julia Roberts was still the American sweetheart who appeared in every second romantic comedy. Most of them had nothing revolutionary to add to the genre but were pleasant enough to watch. Then a refreshing British romcom “Notting Hill” hit the screens and quickly became a modern classic. Roberts’s partner in the movie is no one else than another veteran of the genre, Hugh Grant.

Let me quickly introduce the plot for those of you who hasn’t seen the movie yet. Anna is an American film star who comes to a bookshop run by Will. The innocent kiss starts an unbelievable romance between a man known only to his closest ones and a woman who is famous around the world. We can definitely see the typical romcom themes here – difficult love found in unexpected places, feelings that should not be and yet are and of course the Prince and the Pauper. What is different, however, is that this time it’s the man who is the Cinderella.

From the very start of the movie it’s clear that it’s Anna, who wears the pants. She’s the desirable one, a smart, successful and confident woman. Will likes his job but isn’t a mogul. He shares a flat with an eccentric flatmate and is quite an awkward character himself. He’s undeniably good looking but his lack of confidence makes him less remarkable. Anna is the one who kisses Will, she’s also the one who makes the decision to see more of him or not. “Notting Hill” may be a variation of the Cinderella story but it reverses the gender roles. To learn whether the commoner gets the Princess you’ll have to watch the movie and I’m sure you won’t regret it.

Apart from the interesting plot, the film’s undeniable advantage is British humor. Not always PC jokes make the audience laugh wholeheartedly. Julia Roberts is a good actress and her sweet smile makes the movie more pleasant too watch. Hugh Grant is convincing as a clumsy shop attendant and remains a charming presence on the screen. Apart from the leads there’s a whole bunch of interesting characters to keep the audience entertained during the movie.

As a proper romcom it has a few heart grasping scenes and most people will shed a tear or two while watching it. Humor is tactfully mixed with slightly cheesy, yet moving scenes. The tear-jerking music with a never forgotten song by Rowan Keating is the cherry on top.

If you’re looking for a heartwarming, light movie to watch with your girlfriends or partner, “Notting Hill” won’t disappoint you. We all need a break after all from spending evening in trying to answer important life questions such as “What’s the purpose of life?”, “Who am I?” and “What to make for dinner?”.


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