When I originally looked at this movie all the reviews I saw said it was a feminist movie. I finally broke down and ordered it from Netflix because I really like the actresses in the film, I was pleasantly surprised. We all really enjoyed the movie for several reasons.
First, having it set in the early 50's was interesting. I was fascinated by the clothes and such.
Second, the views of the time were almost the complete opposite of what we see now in society. The movie focuses on a woman's place, whether it's in the home or not. Those that chose something other than getting married and being a full-time homemaker are the misfits.
Last, the message wasn't what I expected. The message seemed to be to think for yourself. The idea of being a homemaker wasn't condemned and in fact one of the main characters struggles with whether she wants to further her studies to become a lawyer or get married. Although the character played by Julia Roberts tells her she doesn't have to make a choice this character explains that she does if she's not wiling to sacrifice her (possible) family.
The special features on the disk were also really good. It gave us some interesting topics for discussion.