Last night I had the pleasure of prescreening #MistressAmerica a indy comedy by writer, director Noah Baumbach. It’s the second film this year for the busy Baumbach, While We’re Young being the first starring Ben Stiller. It’s on my list to check out. If it’s as funny, honest and real as Mistress America I’ll be pretty happy to watch it.
The prescreen was plenty full, many women, moms and parents. It was showing in the older stuffier and humid Landmark Theatre in Hill Crest. It was an somewhat rowdy crowd with people arguing about shutting off phones and other shenanigans.
I find it hard to explain exactly how I felt about this film. On one hand I really really liked it, it’s humor, dialogue and creativity. On the other hand the I’m on the fence as to the takeaway of the film and what it means to the younger audience and women today, more on that later. The dialogue captures the millennial generation perfectly with it’s short attention span and somewhat careless knowledge and witty use of the english language. It was at first hard to follow then you understand and feel it. You feel what it’s like as a young person in todays society knowing everything but nothing. In someways Baumbach writing is a style all his own and a kin to Wes Anderson and something that I’m really liking.
Tracy is the smart, college student, friendless and rejected from the group she wants to be apart of and the man she takes a liking to. Her parents have divorced and she is new to her college and New York City. Brooke, played by Greta Gerwig, does what Brooke does, she’s flighty, creative, knows everyone and she in essence is New York. Greta Gerwig is a co-writer on this and has written herself an amazing part and played it so well. She is worth watching alone but when these two characters get put together magic happens. Each seem to look up and admires one another as each seems to feed off the energy and attention of the other.
The relationship of the two intertwine and drama ensues with some really funny scenes.
I’m not sure if Michael Chernus is in every movie recently or started dating someone in Hollywood to get in every show and film I watch, but he’s in everything! Don’t get me wrong I think he’s funny
In the end each girl learns to grow up, live life and create a future. Honestly I liked this film probably for the writing and characters but I can’t put my finger on it. It just feels real and there’s a lot packed into this short film. However that being said I did over hear a few mothers with daughters away at college just like Tracy talking after the film. While they liked it seemed to scare them or not want to recommend it to their daughters. This is probably what left me thinking that something about the ending, theme and plot were off. I try not to overthink it but I think these strong women characters end up just living life as they want and because of that it might make some uncomfortable.
Highly recommend this for the dialogue and Brooke character: 4.5 stars!
In theaters now.