Touchstone Pictures released Pretty Woman to theaters on March 23, 1990. Garry Marshall directed the film starring Richard Gere, Julia Roberts, and Jason Alexander.
Pretty Woman Movie Summary
When you get caught between the Moon and Studio City, the best thing you can do is buy your love. Pretty Woman, released in 1990, is the timeless tale of boy meets whore, but this strumpet for your trumpet isn’t just any hooker–she’s a Disney doxy, and like all the animated adulteresses that came before her: Cinderella, Snow White, Aerial, and that bitch, Lady; there is a strong streak of wholesome goodness in her that will inspire your young children for years to come.
Our vivacious vixen, played by Julia Roberts, is your typical 80s prostitute (ala Jamie Lee Curtis in Trading Places, Dolly Parton in Best Little Whorehouse In Texas, or even Patty Mullen in Frankenhooker). She has a mouth like a vice but a heart of gold. Roberts plays Vivian Ward, a traditional girl-next-door who decides to move to Los Angeles with a boyfriend that treats her like shit in the hopes of finding fame and fortune. When things don’t work out for the Southern Belle du Jour, she does what any red-blooded American girl does, she refuses to return home and straps on the thigh highs and turns to hooking to make ends meet.
Enter the brave knight, to swoop in and save our fare maiden. Edward Lewis, played by a true Officer and A Gentlemen, Richard Gere, is in Beverly Hills to acquire James Morse’s shipping company. Eddie makes his money by buying companies in trouble, breaking up it up into valuable little pieces, and selling them off for a billion dollar profit. You see, Eddie has Daddy issues, and one of the first companies that he dismantled and sold was his father’s, whom he had blamed for leaving his mother. Since that time, he has grown to love the Power acquisitions bring him and shows No Mercy to those in his way, but everything is about to change.
Eddie encounters Vivian on Hollywood Boulevard, the streetwalking equivalent to K-Mart. Eddie is having trouble driving his employee’s expensive car, and finding his hotel. Vivian offers to give him directions…for $5.00, then seeing his desperation, she ups it to a whopping $10. This girl is a wheeler and dealer for sure. It takes Eddie a few moments to figure out how to get it in Gere, but our sporting lady knows how to get things racing, and off they go.
Eddie is so dazzled by Vivian’s horsepower that he purchases her services for the night. Love is best when you can pay the Woman to leave the next morning, but once again, this is fairytale fornication. Our girl has values; she’s wholesome, she flosses, doesn’t use a pimp, wears thigh high boots so as to not scape her knees, and comes complete with a Rainbow Brite selection of condoms. She will do anything, except kiss on the mouth. Which is good for Vivian because I don’t think she would want to taste the last guy Richard, I mean Eddie was with.
After a Breathless night of hamster high jinx, Eddie decides to purchase Vivian’s services for the rest of the week for $3,000. She will be his literal beck and call girl, but before she can begin servicing Eddie, he has to turn this slattern slut into a pretty woman. Can anyone say 80s shopping montage? Here we go! Oh wait, this is Rodeo Drive and her Frederick’s of Hollywood ensemble isn’t going to get her any service until Eddie whips out his Knight-in-shining-armor credit card that he never leaves home without and uses it to save the day. Now Miss Family Values can return to get revenge on those bitches who wouldn’t serve her the day before.
Now that she is high class, Vivian does what high class people to do: go to dinner, watch polo matches, fly on private jets, cry at the opera, and screw the hell out of the man that makes it all possible. By this time, Eddie is more worried about entertaining Vivian than pursuing the Morse Company. I guess a condom will stop the sperm, but not the love. A kiss on the lips can’t be far behind. Eddie’s new found compassion for life urks his lawyer, the evil rapist George Costanza, who can’t believe that Eddie is being Unfaithful to his true nature and storms off to ask Jerry for advice at lunch.
As Vivian and Eddie continue to spend time together, we witness a blossoming love that can only be adequately expressed on Twitter through a 1980s brick cell phone. The lady of the night learns the true meaning of what it is to be a fairytale princess – the man who will sweep you off your feet will be the man who can buy you what ever you want when you want it, but Vivian doesn’t like the offer Eddie is making. It sounds so dirty – like she would be whoring her body or something – and this woman is now pretty, so she holds out for her fairly tale ending.
Eddie’s change is not just related to his recently contracted gonorrhea reaching his brain. He no longer wants to dismantle the Morse Company. Nope, he wants to build, not destroy. Eddie wants to help the Morse Company build ships. The Navy then buys the ships. The sailors then buy the prostitutes. The prostitutes then buy baby formula. Trickle Down Economics at is best – Reagan must have been proud. Eddie has saved the village, now it’s time to win the girl.
He overcomes the useless plot point of his Primal Fear of heights, and Vivian gives up the snatch patch so she can go back to school, which we all know is a bunch of shit, because we all know she is going to marry a millionaire and never have to work a day again for the rest of her life even if Eddie doesn’t come for her. The School of Life has already taught her that lesson.
The Final Analysis, Disney wants us to believe that prostitution can be a lucrative profession, as long you find the right John, and generations of people agree.
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