Last night I watched the film Ethel by Rory Kennedy. It was standing room only in the theater. I had front row seats—not a fun place to sit in a theater but I really wanted to see this film.
Ethel Kennedy, who just turned 84 years old, is an amazing women who raised eleven children. As her daughter points out in the film, “Mummy, do you realize you have been pregnant ninety-nine months of your life?” This film made you laugh, made you cry and showed how special family bonds really are.
If you get the chance, make the time to see Ethel this evening at 7:30pm. Get there early so you can get a seat. You can also catch In Conversation with Rory Kennedy at 5:30pm at Sarasota High School Auditorium.
I asked a few people after the film what they thought of the film. Here are there thoughts.
“Having lived through that era with all those tragedies, that poor family, how they have turned it into positive energy and have never given up. You see the optimism. It’s a real inspiration. I never knew how silly and sassy Ethel was. That was really wonderful to have seen.” -Gerri Keen
“I thought this film was extremely artfully done. It was well-directed, well-edited and I enjoyed it thoroughly. I really hope that young people, especially high school students, get to see that point of view from Ethel and Rory and the Kennedy family.” – Susan Benjamin
“I learned what a strong women Ethel is and what an amazing family she raised. Also, how she transformed from being a conservative Republican to a very liberal progressive Democrat. I found it thrilling to see the transformation.” – Steve Keen
“So moving, it gave a whole different perspective, I think, on the Kennedy family dynamics.” – Ann Freis
“Very honest, the earnestness was inspiring in itself. I’m looking forward to younger people seeing this and holding something up in front of them that raises the bar because the bar of ethics and community service is lowering all the time. It’s a wonderful film.”– Abigail Scherer Robinson
My grandmother had nine children and then helped to raise four more; my brother and sisters. I related to the “big” family dynamic. The film made me miss my family and made me feel a bit guilty that I don’t spend more time with them. Ethel Kennedy reminded me of my grandmother; strong, witty and free-spirited. – Dayle Hoffmann