Beautiful (2000)

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German title Beautiful
Original title Beautiful
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 2000
length 108 minutes
Age rating FSK 6
Director Sally Field
script Jon Bernstein
production John Bertolli ,
BJ Rack
music John Frizzell
camera Robert D. Yeoman
cut Debra Neil-Fisher

Beautiful is an American comedy film of Sally Field from the year 2000 .


Mona Hibbard grew up in a small town in Illinois . She dreams of one day being elected Miss American Miss. Since her stepfather harasses her at night and she doesn't feel protected by her mother, she looks for a foster family with Ruby. This is an inconspicuous schoolmate who joins her because Mona supports her against rowdy classmates and praises Ruby's sewing skills. Ruby the Mona goes on to tailor missing clothes for her regional beauty pageants.

Hibbard becomes pregnant by her boyfriend, but a "Miss American Miss" has to be childless. She hands the baby over to her friend Ruby and continues to devote herself to her career. With Ruby's help, she studies the demands that the American public places on a beauty queen. With hypocrisy and intrigue, they succeed in making Mona progress in the regional preliminary decisions. She doesn't even shy away from physical attacks on her competitors, which gives her a certain reputation in the media in this regard. Eventually she becomes "Miss Illinois".

Ruby, who is a nurse by profession, takes care of Vanessa (Mona's daughter). Through the loving upbringing, she develops into an intelligent, independent seven-year-old child whose goal is to become a professional footballer. She doesn't like her "aunt" Mona, but she supports her with her miss election plans by taking pictures of her everyday life, as Ruby told her that Mona would be gone for a long time.

One day, one of Ruby's patients is found dead in the hospital: she died from an overdose of pills she had accumulated herself. The police believe that Ruby intentionally killed the woman. She is imprisoned and from there Mona has to look after her child.

She tries hard to be a good "surrogate mother" for Vanessa, who longs for Ruby very much. When Mona's attempts to get her stepsister Ruby out of prison fail, she has to put up with living alone with Vanessa, making her meal and picking her up from soccer practice.

Mona ("Miss Illinois") succeeds in taking part in the competition for the election of the "Miss American Miss", which means that she has to move to a hotel with all the other defects. She tries to get her mother to come with her to vote, but she refuses on the grounds that Mona has never looked after anyone other than herself and now she should spoon her soup on her own.

Mona moves into the hotel with Vanessa and manages to keep her secret until shortly before the finale, or to disguise her origins. She develops a growing affection for her daughter, and when Vanessa asks her to tell her who she belongs to, Mona confesses and asks her to sit in the family seats for the finale. She complies with this request.

Meanwhile, a particularly pushy reporter pulls out all the stops to find out Mona's true relationship with Vanessa, which she ultimately manages. She is waiting in front of the ballot room and wants to reveal the secret of Miss Illinois in front of the cameras.

Meanwhile, the question and answer session begins in the hall, and it goes without a hitch - until Mona's appearance. When asked "Which of your qualities do you value most in yourself?", Mona would like to answer with 'honesty' at first, but when she looks into Vanessa's face the truth breaks out of her. She stands by her daughter and says that mothers are beautiful too, picks up Vanessa and wants to leave the hall with her. The doors remain locked, however, and Mona is asked to return to the stage. The audience voting begins. Many mothers who watch the Miss pageant are enthusiastic about Mona's speech and call for her. Mona wins the election and is voted "Miss American Miss". Ruby and the other inmates cheer.

At the end of the film, Mona and Vanessa pull up in a new car and get Ruby out of jail after the suspicion of euthanasia was found to be unfounded.


James Berardinelli wrote on ReelViews that the film was "wretchedly insipid" and looked like a mockery of its own title. Berardinelli scoffed in a play on words that the film was not only "ugly" ("ugly"), but so "ugly" that one thinks of the film Coyote Ugly . The action is "uninspired" and "not inspiring". Compared to this film, the most sentimental “crap” produced for television seems subtle. The film has no "grace" and no "charm"; he was pure manipulation.

“A very entertaining story, but one that lacks the courage to make the decisive comedy and whose conflicts all dissolve in favor. The multitude of problems mentioned is also reduced to a footnote. "

“Minnie Driver (...) instigates an amusing goat terror. But overall there is a lack of bite and malice, especially since the story slips into a shallow mother-child drama at the end. It's a shame, because you will quickly forget the directorial debut of Hollywood actress Sally Field. Conclusion: Betulich, well-behaved Miss election satire. "


Hallie Kate Eisenberg was nominated for the Young Artist Award in 2001.


The film was in Los Angeles with a budget of an estimated 9 million US dollars rotated. It had its world premiere on September 11, 2000 at the Toronto Film Festival . The film grossed approximately $ 3.06 million in US cinemas.

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Review by James Berardinelli
  2. Beautiful. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed April 26, 2017 .Template: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used 
  3. Beautiful on
  4. Filming locations for Beautiful
  5. Premiere dates for Beautiful
  6. Box office / business for Beautiful

Web links