My Sister's Keeper: Movie Review

Saturday, June 27, 2009 Posted by Dina N

I am a big fan of Jodi Picoult's books. I have read several - including about half of My Sister's Keeper - but had not seen any of the movies based on her novels. I had been looking forward to the release of My Sister's Keeper, and went to see it yesterday.

The reason I like Picoult's work is that her stories are very well written, her characters are complicated and multi-dimensional, and their dilemmas are never simple. She makes you really think about whose side you would be on, and it is never easy to decide. My Sister's Keeper is the story of Anna, an 11-year old girl who has donated blood and bone marrow her whole life to help fight her older sister's leukemia. At the point when Anna is expected to donate a kidney to her sister, she decides to sue her parents for medical emancipation and regain control over her body and her life.

I found reading the book was emotionally wrenching, and I had to take a break about halfway through. The movie was just as thought-provoking and emotionally charged. It is very sad but also celebrates life and family in an unusual, realistic way. None of the characters are picture-perfect, and their choices are beyond the everyday right or wrong. The movie and the book raise complex moral and ethical issues, as well. I have to admit I cried quite a bit. It is impossible not to be moved by the plight of Anna, her sick sister, their mother who would do anything to save her older daughter - unwittingly even harming the rest of the family in the process.

The movie has an excellent cast - including Cameron Diaz as the mom, Abigail Breslin as Anna, Jason Patric as the dad, and Alec Baldwin as the lawyer Anna hires. Joan Cusack is great as the judge presiding over Anna's case and a woman who has suffered her own personal tragedy. I was impressed by Sofia Vassilieva whom I had not seen before - she has the role of Kate, the sick sister. The remaining cast is also excellent. It is all put together by talented director Nick Cassavetes who previously directed The Notebook and John Q, among others.

In short, I recommend that you watch My Sister's Keeper, and you also read the book.


  1. janetfaye said...

    Thanks for the review.

    I have the book but I haven't read it yet.

  2. A Reader said...

    I enjoyed the movie, but was disappointed in the huge ending change. It really threw me for a loop.

  3. Anonymous said...

    i loved the book sooo much. but the movie i was looking so forward to watching it, i was soo disappointed with the ending and leaving out Julie she was a big character in the book...

  4. Flying Giggles and Lollipops said...

    I love her books! They are awesome reads, I only made it half way through My Sister's Keeper. I was reading it while I was pregnant with my youngest daughter Chloe and I just could not finish it. What I read of it, it was fantastic, just bad timing in my life to finish. I am dying to see the movie. Thanks for the review!

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