Fine, maybe I’m being a tad dramatic, but it seemed like just a little over a decade ago they dominated the box office! Now we’re lucky to get one. Until now. Reese Witherspoon has teamed up with Netflix to star in and produce TWO new rom-coms!
The first movie is called Your Place Or Mine and tells the story of “two long-distance best friends who change each other’s lives when she decides to pursue a lifelong dream and he volunteers to keep an eye on her teenage son." The same person who wrote the script for The Devil Wears Prada and for Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Aline Brosh McKenna, is directing it. So that’s a good sign, right?
The second movie is based on Sarah Haywood’s novel, The Cactus, which came out in 2019. It’s about a woman named Susan who is a single, type-A woman dealing with an unexpected pregnancy and navigating a difficult family inheritance debacle. A type-A woman definitely sounds like what Reese is best at!
While we wait, shall we take a trip down memory lane to appreciate the absolute upper-echelon of acting that is Laura Jeanne Reese Witherspoon?
Annette Hargrove in Cruel Intentions (1999)
It’s one of the most well-done teen dramas, and yet it seems to be consistently overlooked. Not only does it have one of the most iconic soundtracks (Bittersweet Symphony, anybody?), it was the first time we got to see Ryan Phillippe and Reese together in action!
The character Annette publishes an article saying that she plans to keep her virginity intact until she is in love. Two step-siblings see the article and have a sinister idea. Kathryn, who is Sebastian’s (Ryan Phillippe) new step-sister and played by Sarah Michelle Gellar, does not think Sebastian has a chance with Annette, so they make a wager on if he’ll convince Annette to lose her virginity to him.
I was starting what I guess became my bigger mission in life — of questioning why women were written certain ways on film.
Reese actually played a huge part in creating a better character for Annette, and she was only 22 at the time. She explained, "I remember finding Annette too demure and too much of a woman influenced by a guy's manipulations. I was starting what I guess became my bigger mission in life — of questioning why women were written certain ways on film."
Elle Woods in Legally Blonde (2001)
Full transparency, the first time I saw this movie in the 4th grade I didn’t really appreciate it. A girl with a dog goes to college. So what? I didn’t realize how empowering and inspiring this movie was beyond the surface until I was an adult and rewatched it.
Elle captivated and inspired young girls then and now because she’s a prime example that you can’t judge a woman by how she looks.
Elle captivated and inspired young girls then and now because she’s a prime example that you can’t judge a woman by how she looks. You can love pink and fashion, and still be smart and kick butt in school and your career. She’s outgoing, kind, and fiercely determined to prove the naysayers and her ex-boyfriend wrong by going to Harvard Law School, even though no one believed she could do it. It’s a glow up for the ages and probably the role Reese is most remembered for. By the way, in case you didn’t know, Mindy Kaling is currently writing Legally Blonde 3 which will star Reese reprising her role as Elle!
Madeline Martha McKenzie in Big Little Lies (2017-2019)
Reese nails all of the different layers to being a wife and a mother with this bold and unfiltered character. Madeline is a dominant personality in her group of mom friends where she stands out for being sassy and smart. As the series goes on you see that while Madeline is extremely brave and a leader, she’s also navigating some personal shame and insecurity. Witherspoon earned an Emmy and a Golden Globe nomination for this role, and it’s probably the one character she’s played that I’ve related to the most.
Reese nails all of the different layers to being a wife and a mother with this bold and unfiltered character.
I can’t wait to see if one or both of Reese’s new films will win a ranking on my “favorites list.” Even if they don’t, Reese is still the GOAT, and at least we’ll still have more seasons of The Morning Show to look forward to. Ooh, should I make a list of my favorite Jen Aniston roles next? Spoiler alert, it’s TMS, followed by The Break Up.