Pretty Woman (1990)

Garry Marshall directs Richard Gere, Julia Roberts and Jason Alexander in this fairytale romcom where a fat cat and a prostitute spend the week together.

Everywhere she walks heads turn. As if LA has a deficit of leggy stunners, as if 5 star hotel guests never pay for sex work. M-MERCY! A star is born. Roberts is vivacious here playing the cleanest, most wholesome, healthiest looking streetwalker of all time. That aspect of the con never ever convinces and it has taken repeated viewings for me to get over the unreality and iffy-ness of it all. Yet the gloss works, the sexiness works, the jokes land and the yacht rock soundtrack absolutely slaps. It is Cinderella, ain’t it? Cinderella with references to crack and condoms… but Cinderella all the same. Made three decades after Breakfast At Tiffany’s and now the same passage of time old, I’d say it is about as dated and honeyed and forgivable. As well made and perky as it all is I don’t know what I want from it. A hard hitting drama? No. Slightly less pristine sex? The piano scene is perfect. A more believable ending? Truth is abandoned the second the wonderful shopping / makeover montage begins. Every outfit from the start of the second act = chef’s kiss! Sometimes you just gotta let the confection be the confection. This time, for the first time, I valued the sweetness.


Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here

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