indulge in some quiet time




a home + living guide for the post-college, pre-parenthood, quasi-adult generation


editor's note 

o lounge 
o nourish 
o host

o send an ECARD

submit your ideas
support digs

rented any good movies lately? jump to the boards and recommend it. 
other new + recent LAZE features:
o Flick: The Corporation
o Flick
: I Heart Huckabees
o Flick: Coffee and Cigarettes
o Flick
: Before Sunrise
o Flick
: Before Sunset
: Deadwood, Carnevale
o Flick
: Code 46
o Flick
: Minority Report
o Flick
: The Motorcycle Diaries
o Flick
: The Adventures of Priscilla
o Bookshelf: Persepolis and Persepolis 2
o TV
: Veronica Mars
o Flick
: The Safety of Objects
o Flick
: Owning Mahowny
o Flick
: The Magdalene Sisters
o Flick
: City of God
o Flick
: Noi the Albino
o Flick
: Los Amantes del Circulo Polar
o Flick
: Dark Days
o Flick
: Super Size Me
: Dead Like Me, Wonderfalls

copyright ©1999-2005

buy the DVD

flick pick | Million Dollar Baby 2004
Directed by: Clint Eastwood
Written by: F. X. Toole [stories], Paul Haggis [screenplay]
Starring: Clint Eastwood, Hilary Swank, Morgan Freeman
Language: English
Look for it at the video store under: drama
Watch it when you’re in the mood for something:  serious
The critic says: / 5 the rating system explained
Fun factor: /5 

Plot synopsis Frankie Dunn's trained a lot of boxing champions in his long career, but when eager new boxer Maggie Fitzgerald approaches him to ask for help, he turns her down. He doesn't train girls, he tells her, letting her know in no uncertain terms that though he realizes female boxing has become popular, he doesn't think women have any place in such a brutal sport and that anyway, Maggie's far too old. But thirty-one-year-old Maggie's spent her whole life thus far used to the fact that world doesn't expect much of her; boxing's the only thing she's ever done that's made her feel like she's worth something, and she's not about to give up so easily. She becomes a member of the gym Frankie runs with his friend (and former star boxer) Eddie, putting in hour after hour alone at the punching bag, occasionally getting tips from Eddie, who sees both her determination and her potential. Frankie does his best to ignore her, but in the end, he can't stand watching her go about it all wrong. He reluctantly takes her on, though he makes her promise that as soon as he's taught her what she needs to know, she'll find someone else to be her manager. This is Frankie's way of insuring he doesn't get too attached; he's had boxers ditch him in the past, and is no stranger to abandonment in his private life either, having tried and failed for years to get in contact with his estranged daughter. But as Frankie helps Maggie gain the skills and hone the instincts to become a world-class boxer, attachment happens anyway. Both the old man and the young woman begin to discover that in each other, they've found family. It's a relationship that will cause them pain and bring them comfort, as they find themselves facing a very difficult battle.

Review I swear I'm like the one person in America who's never seen Rocky. Frankly, this has never seemed like a major loss in my life; boxing, on the whole, doesn't really do a whole lot for me. So when I first saw the previews for Million Dollar Baby, I wasn't particularly interested. I like movies about complex people and complicated emotions and hard-to-wrestle-with ideas; feel-good flicks of the underdog-becomes-a-champion genre? Eh, not my thing, even if the underdog is an appealingly feisty girl fighting annoying gender stereotypes. But then Million Dollar Baby went on to garner awards galore, and so I added it to my DVD rental list even though it still didn't sound like it would be my cup o' tea. As it turns out, Million Dollar Baby kind of is my sort of a movie -- the boxing ring might be the setting for a good chunk of the movie's scenes, but this is very definitely a relationship movie. The main point of the movie isn't about how Maggie rises to become a boxing success; the movie's far more interested in exploring what makes its two lonely protagonists tick, and how their makeshift father-daughter relationship develops. As such, it's the excellent and completely non-melodramatic performances of the two stars that really make the movie work. Both Swank and Eastwood give their characters just the right balance of toughness and vulnerability to feel real -- we can't help but like them and feel for them and root for them. There's something that feels kind of old-fashioned about this simple story -- no hip camera angles, no trendy convoluted story structures, heck, even the look of the movie kind of makes you feel like it's set in some earlier era. This is a quiet movie, a contemplative movie, a poignant movie; there's nothing flashy about it and yes, some folks might think it makes the movie a tad obvious, a bit boring. But in the end, Million Dollar Baby does what good movies ought to: it makes us think, it makes us feel, it touches our hearts and our minds both. —reviewed by Yee-Fan Sun

looking for a recommendation? 
find a flick to suit your mood

or browse the 
complete list of flick picks

---------------------------> lounge . nourish . host . laze . home .