Cinema Consults: Million Dollar Baby

Physician's Money Digest, September 2005, Volume 12, Issue 13

Million DollarBaby (2004)Some movies aregreat films, but youknow you will onlybe able to watchthem once. Such isthe case with MillionDollar Baby, an excellent collaborationof thoughtful directing, fineacting, and intelligent writing. ClintEastwood certainly deserves hisOscar® for directing this movie; hecrafts this piece with such tendernessand unflinching grief. He alsodelivers an endearing performanceas Frank Dunn an aging boxingtrainer who reluctantly takes onMaggie Fitzgerald (Hilary Swank) ashis latest pupil. Swank develops herrole with subtle gestures and truegrit to create an endearing characterthat haunts you long after the filmreel has ended. She is a very giftedactress. And it would be a disservicenot to mention the film's narratorand backbone, Morgan Freeman;sometimes I think all movies shouldbe narrated by him. (It certainly didnot hurt The Shawshank Redemptionor March of the Penguins.) Thismay sound a bit over-dramatic, butyou become a better person bywatching the struggles of this film'scharacters and by confronting theirmoral battles. However, if you giveyourself over to it, the film will leaveyou emotionally exhausted. That'swhy one viewing is all I'll ever needfor this film.

Rating: 3.5

, managing editor of

Physician's Money Digest, is currently working

on her PhD in literature at Drew University in

New Jersey. She is an avid fan of film and has

taught a summer film course at Fairleigh

Dickinson University. She welcomes questions,

comments, or suggestions for future film reviews

at 732-656-1140 ext 195 or ltomaszewski@ascendmedia.com.

Lisa A. Tomaszewski