Amber Tamblyn's audacious directorial debut, inspired by Janet Fitch's novel, is a fever dream of a movie featuring two strong women on a grief-stricken collision course. We meet Josie (Alia Shawkat) first, who's sleeping off a night of hard partying at a punk club when she gets a phone call telling her that her boyfriend Michael has been found in a desert motel, dead of a self-inflicted gunshot. Then we meet Michael's patrician mother Meredith (Janet McTeer), an imperious concert pianist who shockingly attacks Josie at the funeral, blaming her for her beloved son's death.
This is the beginning of a ferocious battle between these two strong and damaged women, antagonists thrown together by loss, who develop a strange and dangerous co-dependency as their war of wills escalates. Tamblyn films this struggle with ferocious concentration and flamboyant visual flair, using deeply saturated colors that at times pitch her film on the edge of hallucination. Shawkat is a revelation, more than holding her own against the always formidable McTeer, whose pitiable monster brings to mind Norma Desmond in her gothic lair.
|Producers:||Wren Arthur, Amy Hobby, Anne Hubbell, Amber Tamblyn|
|Screenwriter:||Ed Dougherty, Amber Tamblyn|
|Cinematographers:||Brian Rigney Hubbard|
|Cast:||Alia Shawkat, Janet McTeer, Alfred Molina, Rhys Wakefield, Emily Rios|
|Running Time:||96 minutes|
|Awards:||James Lyons Award for Best Editing of a Feature Narrative, Woodstock Film Festival|
guests in attendance
Amber Tamblyn – Director (January 6 & 7 only)