Moving story about an unusual woman
Heart Like a Wheel, This is one of those rare performances in which you fall in love with the actress. Bonnie Bedelia was apparently nominated for a Golden Globe as Best Actress for her performance as Shirley Muldowney – she should have won an Oscar.
Whether or not you care anything about drag racing – I don’t – this is just as much a movie about an unusual, sweet but driven, woman through two decades. It’s really tops.
The only criticism I have is that the movie lets the character off rather lightly for abandoning her husband and child after a fight over whether she should be gone from home throughout the year. The truth is that it must be terribly difficult for someone not in the industry to keep a marriage going – including parenthood of a 12 year old – with someone who wants to be gone throughout the year and throughout the country. At one point, Beau Bridges accuses her of abandoning her husband due to ambition – and I suspect there may be more in the accusation than the movie allows the viewer to believe (since Beau Bridges at that point is behaving pretty awfully).
Still, Bonnie Bedelia is so charming, sweet, pretty, winning in every way – that the viewer does nothing but cheer her success.
It’s not about the cars, it’s about the woman