Daily reviews and interviews
Reviewed by Nora Ankrum, Fri., March 16, 2012
StarletNarrative Feature Competition
D: Sean Baker; with Dree Hemingway, Besedka Johnson, Stella Maeve, James Ransone
What do porn, bingo, and a Chihuahua named Starlet have in common? They're somehow the humanizing elements in a movie about two vacuous, beautiful, skinny young things with perpetually mussed hair, Jane (Hemingway) and Melissa (Maeve), and a not-so-sweet lady on the wrong side of 80 years old named Sadie (Johnson). Between them, it's hard to say who is the most crotchety. The former live in a nondescript L.A. apartment where they spend most days smoking pot in short shirts and boy underwear. It's a testament to their acting or the directing or to some other movie magic in this beautifully shot film that their special brand of whiny-pouty comes across not as grating but as comedic crossed with sweet and sometimes sad. Sadie, meanwhile, is the kind of sassy lady whose lawn you'd better get off of, except that Jane – who found some serious cash stashed in a Thermos bought at Sadie's yard sale – can't seem to stay away from her. Watching their relationship unfold, it turns out, is a lovely thing.
Thursday, March 15, 6:30pm, Alamo Lamar