She’s an artist in my book, full of as much spunk as glamor, and she’s as tough as she is sweet. A natural beauty, a survivor, but above all, she’s a star with a soft twinkle. I joke with my fiancé, “she’s one of the few women in Hollywood today that actually knows how to run well.” No offense to the rest of Hollywood (I’m its biggest fan), but how many times have you seen a glamourous actress/mother that runs as well as a high school soccer team’s MVP?
I just saw her last night in a film I had never heard of, Just Like a Woman, where she freely runs to save her friend, runs from her cheating husband, runs to give a big hug, runs to hurry, without looking awkward once. Her greatest running moment is when she played Super Star, Edie Sedgwick, in the film, Factory Girl (one of my all time favorites). Next to her running skills, she’s obviously a pure athlete, capable of doing cartwheels bralessly and flawlessly, as she did in the profound and literary romance, The Edge of Love, costarring Keira Knightly. And in Just Like a Woman, she belly dances like a true Egyptian princess.
Next to all that athleticism and spunk, rests the traits of an artist.
You will never see Miller in a cliché romantic comedy, nor will you see her out and about in an outfit you recently saw in a fashion magazine. She’s not as famous as many other Hollywood women, but she dresses better than all of them, carrying more intrigue and eclectic intricacy. She’s slightly boho, slightly Audrey Hepburn, slightly Crocodile Dundee, slightly pirate, slightly princess, slightly Jenny from Forest Gump, slightly runway model, slightly natural, slightly luxurious, but mostly just herself.
As an avid fan of Old Hollywood women, I’m surprised that I’m such a fan of the contemporary starlet, Sienna Miller. Then again, when you see her list of work, it’s not really that surprising.
She plays a beautiful, delicate Southern Belle in the magic realist film, Camille, across a James Deanish, but lazy good for nothing dreamboat, played by James Franco. Miller somehow makes a dead young woman, who is literally falling apart as she ventures her way to Niagara Falls for her dream honeymoon (not even being dead will stop her!), as sweet as Strawberry Shortcake and as wise as a Medicine Man.
Just Like a Woman, which I decided to watch after searching for Sienna Miller movies on Netflix, is like an allegory of the classic adventure, fugitive movie, Thelma and Louise. I’m a big fan of Thelma and Louise, so Just Like a Woman had large shoes to fill. Of course nothing could ever upstage or even reach the level of Thelma and Louise, but Just Like a Woman does successfully play the part of a good movie about women, friendship, cultural prejudice, sexism and belly dancing. Let’s face it; there really aren’t enough adventure movies about women, and that’s what I happen to be, an adventurous woman.
Finding Miller’s film last night was in itself an adventure, since I had never heard of the movie before. To watch a story of two women battling the world’s tough social impositions while actively working toward the feminine and dreamy life of becoming a professional belly dancer was as validating as it was a pleasure to see.
It’s not a perfect movie, and it must have had a low budget (after all, who wants to make a multicultural film about two women belly dancing right?), but it’s a movie that will remind you of how hard it is to be a woman, and it will remind you why you love being a woman anyway.
A List of Movies to see for the Novice Sienna Miller fan 🙂
1. Factory Girl
2. The Edge of Love
4. Just Like a Woman
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