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The Elle Woods Leader as Depicted in Robert Luketic's Movie Legally Blonde

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In the movie Legally Blonde, the main character, Elle Woods, is an underestimated college student and president of her sorority, Delta Nu, who wants to make a new name for herself, rather than the stereotype of a “dumb blonde”. After her college boyfriend broke up with her, Woods wanted to demonstrate to him that she was not just the “dumb blonde” he believed her to be. Instead of backing down, Elle made the decision to pursue a career in law. After people laughed at her for applying to Harvard’s Law School, she was accepted and was on her way to make something more of herself. After many struggles and hardships, Elle Woods was able to prove everyone wrong when she defeated a case that no one believed she could win. In the Legally Blonde movie, Elle Woods showed a great amount of leadership through her level of confidence, her willingness to take risks and gamble in situations, and her ambition to never give up.

Having confidence and determination is a major key to being a great leader. If one does not attain this very skill, they will not be able to succeed as well in their position. Elle Woods’ confidence to attend Harvard Law School, with no other back-up universities to choose from, was tremendous and courageous. It took a lot of bravery to consult with her academic advisor who did not believe she would ever be accepted because of her looks, major, and personality. Elle Woods defied this belief and trusted her instincts when making the decision to attend law school even after her parents said she was not serious and did not have what it takes to prosper. She even affirmed in the film, “I am not afraid of a challenge.” Her determination led her to consistently study and practice for her upcoming LSAT exam, in order to make it into law school. This willpower led her to receive a passing grade and then get an acceptance letter into Harvard Law School. While Elle was attending Harvard, Woods used her knowledge of law to fight to get her friend, Paulette’s, dog back from Paulette’s ex-boyfriend. If Elle did not have the bravery to fight for her friend, Paulette would most likely not have gotten her dog back, due to the fact that she was very shy and uncourageous. Due to Elle’s immense amount of self-assurance and intelligence, she was able to help Paulette gain confidence and poise, in order to stand up for herself.

Elle took a grandiose chance by following her love for a man with whom she was unsure would return her love by attending Harvard Law School. While at Harvard, her confidence led her to win a spot on her professor’s intern team. She then seized this certainty and took the risk for fighting for the firm’s client, Brooke Taylor Windham. Elle was the only one, from the start, that believed that Brooke did not murder her husband. Woods fought and fought until she took the gamble of standing up for her client by not telling her boss or any of her peers about Brooke’s alibi. Elle knew that Brooke begged her not to say anything because it would have ruined her public reputation and Elle did not want to lose that trust with her client. Elle’s risk taking worked in her favor when she won Brooke’s alibi case. Woods also took a risk when she fought to be the lone lawyer on Brooke’s second trial case. She had the main lawyer kicked off the case and she fought for Brooke’s innocence. No one believed in her and thought their client was guilty. If Woods did not take the initiative to trust her intuition and value the uniqueness and specialty that she brought to the law firm, the case may have gone in a completely different direction than it did. In the end, Elle Woods’ risk taking worked out for the better because she was able to be the commencement speaker at her law school graduation and was hired for one of the most powerful law firms in the Boston area, immediately following graduation.

Elle showed the power to never give up so many times throughout the film. She was an individual who was unfalteringly set on her goals, no matter how challenging or straining the situation was. Elle Woods persevered with one goal in mind, the goal to exceed all expectations of not only her Harvard peers but also the former love of her life, as well as her family, both sorority family and biological family, with the help of mentor and dear friend, Emmett. Elle showed all of society that although women that attain her high level of beauty can also strive in the academic arena. When her ex-boyfriend said she was not smart and invaluable, she decided to prove him wrong and work extremely hard by constantly studying before class in order to understand what her professor’s were talking about, for the next day. After being called on by her professor’s, Elle answered all the questions correctly and confidently, shocking the professor’s and her ex-boyfriend. She also proved him wrong after solving a case that not even he or anyone else on the team could solve. She never let negative obstacles get in the way of her ultimate goal of being a lawyer one day. Elle Woods sure did prove this to be true after she landed a big job at a great firm in Boston.

The main theme and lesson showed throughout this film is to never judge a book by its cover. Other themes shown throughout the movie were to be yourself, be willing to take risks, and do not be focused on the obstacles, focus on the goal and you will succeed. Everyone, including Woods’ parents, doubted her abilities to be a strong, smart, and independent woman. They did not believe she could be accepted into Harvard, let alone exceed the extraordinary circumstances that were given to her. She was always optimistic about what her future had in store for her. Woods even stated, “You must always have faith in yourself”. Elle Woods demonstrated so many great qualities of being a pronounced and successful leader in today’s society.

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The Elle Woods Leader As Depicted In Robert Luketic’s Movie Legally Blonde. (2019, March 12). GradesFixer. Retrieved October 6, 2022, from
“The Elle Woods Leader As Depicted In Robert Luketic’s Movie Legally Blonde.” GradesFixer, 12 Mar. 2019,
The Elle Woods Leader As Depicted In Robert Luketic’s Movie Legally Blonde. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 6 Oct. 2022].
The Elle Woods Leader As Depicted In Robert Luketic’s Movie Legally Blonde [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2019 Mar 12 [cited 2022 Oct 6]. Available from:
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