Yikes - Helen Mirren, my front runner for best actress at this years Oscar's, has her work cut out for her. Me and my boyfriend ventured out on a gray January Sunday afternoon to see Notes on a Scandal and LOVED it. Judi Denchgives one of the most riveting performances that I have seen on screen. It's absolutely no wonder why she was nominated for Best Actress. She is SO good. She, along with Cate Blanchett, play highly intense and complicated women. Both women find themselves in lives that are far from what they would have expected. They both long for love, a feeling of completion, elation, joy, a life that is more what they dreamed and less what they actually live. It is their own realization and internal struggle that leads to a highly explosive pair after their subsequent meeting. Both women need each other for very different reasons which takes their friendship in frighteningly different paths. The result is what makes this film so truly and emotionally beautiful and complex - much like real life - which is what we hope movies capture. Obviously that isn't always the case. Hollywood has a way of glamorizing "real life" instead of putting a mirror up to it. Aesthetically, "beautiful” is not what you would call this film. It's raw and dirty and exposed. Dame Judi Dench has not an ounce of make up on in this film. She is shot in unflattering light and every wrinkle is there for the eye to see. I will not delve any deeper in to the plot than I already have. I'd hate to ruin it for anyone reading this that is planning on seeing this film. It's worth every penny - 1100 hundred pennies if you are in NYC. This is another reason to see the Oscar awards live February 25th @ 8pm Eastern on ABC. This will be quite the race. Be sure to check out all the movie stills at the Notes on A scandal photo page found on Flickr. oh and did i mention? SEE THE FILM! It's BRILLIANT!