To celebrate the last decade 2010-2019 we are counting down the best actresses and discussing some of their most notable and memorable performances of the last decade. With the help of Film Twitter, the ITOL team have selected 30 actresses. Entry No. 24 is Melissa McCarthy, and guest writer Billie Melissa discusses McCarthy's career over the last decade
We recently got the chance to watch Victoria Muldon's short film "My Neighbour Barbecued My Fence" which was the funniest short film we have come across in a while and had us laughing from start to finish. And, we are delighted to bring you our interview with Victoria regarding her film and how she developed the story and the film's production. We would like to offer our thanks to Victoria for taking the time to talk to us.
Self-care can be difficult, no matter what your age or gender. If you live in New York City and are in your late twenties to early thirties, you may have a few more handicaps to being healthy than the average person. If you’re a single woman in addition to all of the above, and overweight, you apparently have the makings of an Amazon original comedy. There is nothing funny in how women are subject to body shaming or how weight disorders are sometimes linked to psychological trauma. However, Jillian Bell as the title character of “Brittany Runs a Marathon” (2019) does her best to make her story of turning around an unhealthy lifestyle into a poignant and often hilarious triumph.
Netflix boasts its ability to release a number of comedy specials. If you have seen one special, you kind of get the gist of every other special. The material always differs but the presentation is the same. A comic stands alone, on stage, hoping their zingers land and their poignant messages get across. But when Jenny Slate’s “Stage Fright” landed on Netflix in October 2019, it redefined the comedy special. Slate’s comedy is a certain brand. Watch her in 2014’s “Obvious Child,” and you will understand what you are getting in for. In the film, Slate plays, Donna, an underemployed, struggling comedienne who learns that she is pregnant after a one night stand. The jokes, and delivery, are killer. Slate adds heart to her humor and humor to her heart. The moments read different but all of the same elements are in play.
Re-watching and reappraising "Obvious Child" in 2019 for the In Their Own League top 50 films directed by women since 2010 list, it’s hard to imagine the film finding distribution in the US in an era where stricter abortion laws are being imposed, and the government-backed film Unplanned was a box office hit. Not that the film wasn’t without its share of anti-abortion outrage on its initial 2014 release. This is a personal film, with a shot of the political. Gillian’s Robespierre’s debut feature isn’t as steeped in the abortion debate as something like Alexander Payne’s "Citizen Ruth", but it balances a heavy subject with a lightness of touch that shines through Jenny Slate’s leading performance as Donna.
It’s always a refreshing experience to see films with female protagonists; films which tell a woman’s story--the kind of story that is unique to the female lived experience. These female-focused stories are just as valid as the ones that men have, and we see male stories embodied in films constantly. Being a man is not the default state of what it means to be human.