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Film Critics: Today, December 13, winners from Dallas ForthWorthFCA, ChicagoFCA and Film Comment Magazine. Nominations from HoustonFCS, PhoenixCC. PhoenixFCS.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

My Normal


Here we have two points of view about the same movie, so it's perfect for the series Chaos Says/Storyteller Says.

CHAOS SAYS

I just read Storyteller’s “Enjoy!!” at the end of the review concerning this movie and skipped the rest of the review because, well, I couldn’t believe there was a good review about this movie; so here goes what I think:

"My Normal" is the story of a young lesbian who works as a dominatrix, wants to be a film maker and, apparently, thinks she can do all that and still have a normal relationship with a girlfriend. Now, here we have what could have been a really interesting story told in such way that it actually makes it ordinary and uninteresting, which I didn’t think would be possible to do. I mean, how can you fail with this kind of starting point?



Poorly directed, acted (is that acting at all?) and scripted, the movie is almost borderline porn at times and seems to waste its best asset: the actresses’ good looks. I have nothing against porn, but again, even if this movie was porn, it would be the kind I consider crappy porn. Even the soundtrack contributes to make it sound…well, cheap.

There is nothing surprising or thought-provoking (who would think?) about this movie that you will forget 5 minutes after watching it. Where it should have been daring, it wasn’t and at times became almost a caricature; where it should have been self-restrained it also wasn’t and became sleazy. I can’t even define the genre…is it a failed comedy? A bad drama? Both? None? Is it a draft of a movie? I would love to see a good director with a good crew do it all over again...I would accept the same actresses after someone proves to me they can actually act.

That said, I have to admit I watched the all thing; I feel kind of voyeuristic about it. Not my finest hour, watching something that I felt at every second was not worth spending my time on.

You are all warned to proceed with caution.

Yellow light!

...and now I can go back to read Storyteller's review :)

STORYTELLER SAYS

Believe me when I tell you that this is a VERY different film in the lesbian interest genre as film style plus story are not usually seen in the genre. The style looks and feels as porn or XXX but if you overcome the shock that you surely will have with the opening scene plus other scenes within the movie, then you’ll notice that deep inside story is not so bad as –according to me- is all about tolerance. Tolerance in its many forms.

Before writing was checking the trailer and found my comment that reads: “this is a little bit strange for me…” Gosh if I found strange the trailer have to share that I also found strange the movie; but thanks to main actress fabulous screen presence kept watching with my eyes wide open as you already know I don’t like porn and for moments film looked exactly like that, especially because actresses performances which were of the very bad kind. But at the same time I wondered if the “bad acting” was not done on purpose like an exaggeration that could make film look like a satiric farce, at least at many scenes. Who knows, but truth is that when film was over I got the most amazing (and surprising) sensation as I liked this so strange movie more than what I’m willing to accept publicly. Odd, very odd but yes, I like this movie!

Story is about Natalie, played by French born Nicole LaLiberte (suggest to check her video at Vogue), a very assertive young woman that’s struggling to find balance between her dreams of becoming a filmmaker and finding a partner who accepts her as she is, especially after partner learns that she works as a dominatrix. As predictable as it comes Natalie will find a cute girlfriend who will struggle with accepting or tolerating her and her friends work/ lifestyle but story ends on a positive note for Natalie, the filmmaker. Obviously there are many –maybe too many- scenes with Natalie at work and unfortunately even if there is nothing shown absolutely everything looks and feels like sadomasochist porn. Still LaLiberte screen presence plus her looks (she was a model first) and incredible character transformations will help you (a lot) to keep on watching.

Film as a film is… what? Not worth saying much as everything except LaLiberte is on the very bad side of the filmmaking spectrum. Well, maybe the best the film has are some amazing costumes and great makeup.

Very unsure if I should recommend or not this film as surely movie is not for all genre audiences but if you dare to watch a very different film in the genre then maybe, maybe you will have a similar experience to the one I had. Still, I believe that everybody should “meet” Nicole LaLiberte and now I’m very curious about her previous film that I been delaying watching: 2010 Cannes Queer Palm winner Gregg Araki’s Kaboom.

Enjoy!!

Watch trailer @MOC

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