menopausebarbees
... the tales of two sisters

Dana lives in Seattle, and Tracie lives in Germany. We are businesswomen, writers and humorists. We write about life, dating, and today's modern women.

Simply the Best- Spotlight on Viola Davis

One of my favorite ice breakers at dinner parties is to ask a series of questions, including what is your favorite movie of all time? I am a huge movie buff, and I am drawn to actors who can bring characters to life, often times based on their own life’s experiences.

Perhaps that is why I watched with great anticipation last night’s Academy Awards with Viola Davis being nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role. Often times, life mirrors the big screen. Viola Davis gave a tremendous performance in The Help, where she acted as a maid in Jackson, Mississippi who exposed her boss. Viola’s mother was a maid, her father, a horse trainer and she was raised as she called it, in abject poverty and dysfunction.

As a menopausebarbee, Ms. Davis was born August, 11, 1965 and her talent was discovered early. She was previously nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her performance in Doubt.

The competition as usual was tough this year, so along with Viola Davis for The Help, nominees included:
Glenn Close- Albert Nobbs
Rooney Mara- The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo
Meryl Streep- The Iron Lady
Michelle Williams- My Week with Marilyn

The Help was a controversial book and later movie as the story was told from the point of view and voice of black maids, written by a white woman from the South. I have had numerous African American friends in Book Clubs who were not comfortable in discussions of The Help. In fact, the dialect, subject matter and again revisiting awful memories in our history of the turbulent 1960’s, where we were separated based on the color of our skin led to feelings of rage and ambivalence by people of all ethnicity.

The mixed emotions didn’t keep folks from the box office. The Help brought in 25.5 Million opening weekend. I can’t think of a better actor to portray Aibileen than the talented Viola Davis.

In the Academy’s 84 year history, 9 African American women have been nominated for Best Actress. The talent of Dorothy Dandridge, Dianna Ross, Cicely Tyson, Diahann Carrol, Whoppie Goldberg, Angela Basset, Gabourey Sidibe, and the 2001 winner Halle Berry for Monster’s Ball.

Viola lost last night to the amazingly gifted Meryl Streep for her outstanding performance in the Iron Lady. Meryl Streep has had 18 nominations and now 3 wins. So, Viola Davis couldn’t Help but realize she was in excellent company, and she is still one of the best! Her performance maid me proud!