If only she could cash in her golden heart, Julia Roberts wouldn't need to have sex for money.
Twenty years ago, Pretty Woman, Julia Roberts' movie about a barely besmirched hooker who finds love with a rich trick (Richard Gere), came out and completely fucked the world up. It's obviously ludicrous that a wealthy businessman would wife up a streetwalker, or that she wouldn't be a sexually diseased disaster of a human being (word to the stepfather who no doubt molested her). And yet women ran with this story and suddenly they all thought they deserved the finer things in life. Sorry, ladies, but a skank is still a skank, and all she gets is bus fare. Regardless of how misleading the flick was, it did give us the definitive "hooker with a heart of gold," so in its honor we bring you our 10 favorite good-hearted movie prostitutes who convinced us that we could pick up a working girl without getting robbed at gunpoint, gonorrhea, or both...
HEATHER GRAHAM AS JADE
Movie: The Hangover
Why we love her: After a drugged-out dentist accidentally gives her his grandmother's Holocaust ring at their Vegas chapel marriage, this stripper/hooker returns it to him. Do you realize how many knee pads she could have purchased by pawning that?
JAMIE LEE CURTIS AS OPHELIA
Movie: Trading Places
Why we love her: When a broker's reputation is ruined and his bank account is emptied out, the hooker who was hired to break off his wedding engagement gives him a place to stay and helps him make his money back. You don't have to work on your feet to help a man get back on his!
FREIDA PINTO AS LATIKA
Movie: Slumdog Millionaire
Why we love her: This slumdog sex slave not only saves her true love's life by willingly allowing his gun-wielding brother to take her virginity, she also risks her life running from gangsters to be with him. And she didn't even know he was about to win 20,000,000 rupees!
MARIA BELLO AS ROSIE
Why we love her: Given the choice of helping her former driver and jumpoff take on her mob employers to recover a paltry $70,000 or turning him over to get ahead, this call girl uses her fine ass to lure the boss' son into a limo so he can kidnap him. Now that is how you turn a trick!
TARAJI P. HENSON AS SHUG
Movie: Hustle and Flow
Why we love her: This pregnant hooker doesn't just stand by her man when it's hard out there for a pimp, she also overcomes her shyness to wail on one of his rap tracks. She got pipes—and we don't mean the kind that knocked her up!
LUENELL AS LUENELL
Movie: Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
Why we love her: After misogynistic Borat travels thousands of miles to "marry" Pamela Anderson by putting her in a burlap sack, memories of this hooker he met along the way help him find the true meaning of love. We think it was hidden somewhere underneath the fat rolls.
PATRICIA ARQUETTE AS ALABAMA WHITMAN
Movie: True Romance
Why we love her: She may be paid to sleep with a comic book store clerk on his birthday, but seriously, she gets out of the p-trade because she falls in love with a comic book store clerk and weds him. Technically that constitutes marrying down.
KIM BASINGER AS LYNN BRACKEN
Movie: L.A. Confidential
Why we love her: Given all the femme fatale double-dealings, the gold is more likely found in her hair or the p than her heart, but we got the sense that this call girl made to look like movie star Veronica Lake only did what she was forced to so she wouldn't be made to look like Amy Winehouse.
ELIZABETH SHUE AS SERA
Movie: Leaving Las Vegas
Why we love her: She accepts a suicidal alcoholic who wants to drink himself to death for who he is and even accommodates his thirst by pouring liquor down her naked body so he can achieve sexual excitement. With a woman like that, our boozy 3 a.m. booty calls would cause a helluva lot less friction in the relationship.
REBECCA DE MORNAY AS LANA
Movie: Risky Business
Why we love her: Sure, she's the reason valuables disappear from her teenage trick's house, and yeah, she ruins his dad's Porsche 928, but she helps him recover all his shit before his parents return home and even has her hooker homegirls service a Princeton University interviewer to help him get admitted. That is a ride (dick) or die chick!