Friday, December 4, 2015

Mistress America (2015)

Director: Noah Baumbach
Writers:  Noah Baumbach, Greta Gerwig
Cast:       Greta Gerwig, Lola Kirke, Seth Barrish

A lonely college freshman's (Lola Kirke) life is turned upside down by her impetuous, adventurous soon-to-be stepsister (Greta Gerwig). 

I still consider Noah Baumbach to be an up and coming director, even though he is 46 now, and it might be to do with the age of characters that are in his films off late. I don't need to read a synopsis to decide whether to watch his film or not and did the same for Mistress America. Its his second film this year after the excellent 'While We're Young' and you can see traces of its hipster commentary on this one as well even though it is much more on 'Social Media Influencer' types. Film got plenty of laughs and the nature of its humor is not as dark as it is usually in his other films. It also do kind of a twist without making you feel that it is a twist at all. We are shown initially that the freshman character is enamored by much older Greta Gerwig character even though it turns out at the end that the former was using/manipulating the latter as a subject matter for her story. Since it doesn't do it with bells and whistles, some may be put off by the director not explicitly stating things. The frequency of laughs kind of make you almost feel like you are watching a slap-stick comedy and I am sure that I have missed some of them on first watch. Greta Gerwig is very much Baumbach's muse and she also co-wrote the film like she did for 'Frances Ha'. 

It is a great watch and you won't probably see a better comedy film than it this year. I do think it will be liked by even those who are not particularly a fan of Baumbach. It is another one of his films that is set in New-York with the typical Woody Allensque color scheme and that is always a good thing. Performances are excellent but it does kind of get farcical towards the end when that confrontation scene happens between the two main characters. Got to say, on the whole, I enjoyed Mistress America more than While We're Young but both of them are great.

Rating: 4.5/5

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