Mona Lisa Smile

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Mona Lisa Smile ★★½ 2003 (PG-13)

Julia Roberts is Katherine Watson, an art history professor from California who takes a position at Wellesley College, an all girl college of impeccable standing. Watson, of course, wants to enlighten her students to the possibilities that lay outside of their safe, WASPish upbringing and expectations. You've seen the “Maverick-teacher-tries-to-inspire-the-complacent” plot before (think “Dead Poet's Society” on estrogen), and really there's nothing new here but the gender. Strong ensemble cast doesn't have much to work with. 117m/C DVD . US Julia Roberts, Kirsten Dunst, Julia Stiles, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ginnifer Goodwin, Juliet Stevenson, Dominic West, Topher Grace, John Slattery, Marcia Gay Harden, Jordan Bridges, Marian Seldes, Donna Mitchell, Terence Rigby; D: Mike Newell; W: Larry Konner, Mark Rosenthal; C: Anastas Michos; M: Rachel Portman.