THE MIDWIFE — Review by Jeanne Wolf

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“The Midwife” is worth watching just to see two great actresses share the screen as women with entirely different personalities and views on life. It is funny and touching to see Catherine Deneuve fighting aging and illness – nothing like you’ve ever seen her do on the screen before. I couldn’t stop staring at this beauty with too much and too smeary make-up — too many dress sizes up–too wobbly in her high heels. What kept me riveted was her spirit- the kind of “watch me be naughty and excessive” attitude that only a woman who has been adored by men her whole life can live out. Continue reading…

Her running-out-of luck Beatrice has her regrets but she doesn’t take her life lessons too seriously when they stand in the way of too much good wine, or cigarettes or fancy meals she can’t resist. Gorgeous actresses always get attention when they take off the perfect make up and dig down into emotions. Deneuve’s undeniable beauty peeks through the mess of her look and in some scenes she still makes you gasp at that great face.

I’m embarrassed to say that I know very little about the other extraordinary actress, Catherine Frot. She is Claire, the “good” woman in this plot. She is angry and frustrated with Deneuve’s Beatrice ( the audience feels that too) but she can’t resist getting pulled in by her preposterous plans and dreams. She “has to take care of her”, after all she’s a midwife and caring is her life. I couldn’t stop staring at her either. She plays quiet and devoted and loving and too proper and too worried about grand and little things very simply. Yet I’ve never seen the complexity of some one who is both caring and up-tight played with so many subtle colors. What a performance! If Deneuve is painted in blurred lipstick, Frot is created with expressive water color that gradually gets outlined with magic markers as she dares to let her desires show.

The story didn’t matter to me. I just adored watching the two female greats.

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Jeanne Wolf

Jeanne Wolf covers film and entertainment for the Saturday Evening Post and Jeanne Wolf's Hollywood. She has served as West Coast Editor for PARADE magazine and written ”Celebrity Parade,” a daily column on Parade.com. Her recent cover stories for PARADE include Charlize Theron and Whoopie Goldberg. She appears on radio and television, reporting on annual surveys including What America Eats, What America Earns and Pop Culture. Over the years, Wolf has covered every aspect of show business for television, radio, newspapers, magazines and the internet. She was awarded the coveted Publicists Guild Press Award for outstanding show business reporting, and is known for being first with inside scoops from the world of entertainment. On radio, she hosts the daily syndicated ’Jeanne Wolf’s Hollywood,’ and created the ”Inside Entertainment Report” for Entertainment Tonight. She has also reported for ABC's ’Nightline’ and ’Good Morning America,’ and has hosted ’Jeanne Wolf With’ on PBS. She has been contributor/editor for Ladies Home Journal, TV Guide, Town and Country, and Redbook, and writes regularly for Ocean Drive Magazine and Vegas Magazine.