Squeezing in even more independent awesomeness, Sundance Institute has added two new feature films, two special events and three archive films to the 2016 Sundance Film Festival, Jan. 21-31 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden and Sundance, Utah.
image via Slant Magazine
That springtime film festival somewhere in the south of France is now fully under way, and we’re sad to spread the word: there are no female-directed films in competition at Cannes this year. Not that things are much better here in the US. Only five percent of the past year’s big, studio films were helmed by ladies. What gives?
In PLEASE GIVE, director Nicole Holofcener returns to some of the same themes that plagued her 2006 film FRIENDS WITH MONEY, namely money and what to do when you have too much of it. The answer in that case was to donate lots of it to worthy causes unless that worthy cause involves someone you know, in which case it’s impertinent to give a monetarily un-endowed friend a bundle of cash. If that friend has any luck, however, her day wage job will lead her into a situation where she can meet a rich person who’s just bored and lonely enough to marry her, hence solving her money problems for good.
I’ve seen too many main stream romantic comedies that show its female lead literally slipping and falling on her face, to the point that this physical pratfall seems totally cliché. I’m all for women doing ridiculous things – but really there’s so much to draw on out there. Let’s try for more meaningful, complex and embarrassing stuff. The kinds of things we women do that on reflection make us cringe so deeply we’d like to just implode into ourselves. Nicole Holofcener is still making films her way thankfully and PLEASE GIVE satisfies all these needs. What a relief to see imperfect women on the screen whose actions are not defined by their male counterparts and who do not totally reform by the end of the film in simplistic two dimensional ways. They are complex characters. They are selfish, vulnerable, loving and misguided in subtle and not so subtle ways. They are often gloriously ridiculous…