Takeaways From The Movie ‘The Intern’ And Its Zany Lady Boss

Posted: October 19, 2015

Did you see Nancy Meyers’s much-hyped movie, The Intern? We discuss some key takeaways from the travails and triumphs of the ‘new age woman.’

While Nancy Meyers has succeeded in churning out another feel-good flick, most critics have dismissed Anne Hathaway and Robert de Niro-starrer The Intern as more froth and much less substance. And perhaps with good reason.

Jules Ostin (Hathaway), despite the head-spinning success of her e-commerce startup, often cuts a sorry figure, barely able to juggle work and home, or even work and food/sleep. In walks Senior Intern Robert de Niro, armed with a handkerchief and everything, subtly setting Ostin’s perspective straight, with a knowing glance here and a comforting word there. A vestige of the “dying breed” of chivalrous and sensitive men, he acts as the voice of reason (and often emotion) for Ostin, the quintessential “new woman.

The script is weak in places, the narrative lacks novel execution, the portraiture of characters is faulty and the denouement is not entirely surprising. Even so, there is much in this lighthearted comedy that will strike a chord with many a working woman. I would even go as far as to say, go watch it FOR SURE and definitely with your partner in tow. Here are some key takeaways from the travails and triumphs of the “new age woman”

The concept of “work/life balance” needs some revision

It is time to look much more closely at the issue. For a married couple, this balance can probably be achieved if there is a certain flexibility in and re-interrogation of traditional gender roles within the marital framework. Ostin’s husband Matt (Anders Holm) is an adoring stay-at-home dad, though not the perfect husband. He bows out of a fledgling career to enable his enterprising wife to start up, while he dons the kitchen apron and plays mommy to their cute child. “He literally saved our asses”, quips Ostin at one point.

Women need not feel guilty for being ambitious

Women have always been considered as the primary nurturers of home and hearth after marriage, and even a minor slip here and there leads to massive amounts of guilt. As Matt’s apology in the end amply testifies, workaholic, over-achieving career women deserve better than to be punished with their husbands turning adulterous. For a woman to be able to stretch out as the perfect professional and also the perfect mum, the menfolk also need to stretch out and be stronger pillars of support.

Women need to be more supportive and appreciative of each other’s ambitions

Ostin has a hard time keeping up with the other moms in her kid’s school, who clearly place huge premium on preparing “guacamole”, and have decided among themselves that she is a “total bad ass”. Hell, one of them even sleeps with her husband. It is true, peer pressure exists even at that stage- the pressure to be the perfect mom, and visibly “performing” your presence in your child’s life. Women, for their own sakes, have got to much more appreciative of each other’s choices. Just like choosing to be a home-maker doesn’t make you worthless, choosing to have a demanding career doesn’t make you a less worthy mother.

Watch this breezy, albeit flawed, flick with your partner, for the inevitable discussions later, about passion and perception, fulfilling and foregoing, loving and living.

Image via YouTube

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