The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio

I just watched this movie today, which stars Julianne Moore as a 1950’s housewife who raises 10 children with an alcoholic husband who has abusive tendencies. She manages to keep the family going by continually entering, and winning, many contests to write advertising slogans for various products. I really loved the movie, and I think it will touch a lot of people; I want to share it with my mom, and my aunt, and my grandma. From what I’ve heard, it sounds like there are a good amount of similarities between the lives of the family portrayed in this movie (which is based on the memoir of Terry Ryan, one of the 10 children) and the lives of my mom and her siblings and my grandma and grandpa. It portrays very realistically the pressures that the 1950s consumer society, where people had many pressures to fill specific gender roles, put on both women and men. Although for time and generation this movie is much closer to my mom and grandma, I also saw bits of myself in the character of Tuff, the daughter who wrote the memoir (The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio: How My Mother Raised 10 Kids on 25 Words or Less) that the movie was based on. I recommend checking out the movie, and I myself intend to read the book as soon as I can!

Does anyone know of any similarly themed movies or books, preferably memoirs or movies based on true stories, that they could recommend?


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