Monday, June 17, 2002

There's nothing like a late movie review. Thursday, I went to the preview of Kissing Jessica Stein at the Screen on the Hill with J, E and D. Now that really is starting to sound like some kind of biblical criticism.

It was a press night, and the audience was half preening fashionistas and half pushy Jewish people (and of course, some people fell into both categories). In fact, for the first tweny minutes the audience was slightly more interesting than the movie: luckily D was sitting between me and The Most Annoying Woman I've Ever Met - some journo had brought her Mother, ferchrissakes - so I could not strangle her when she commented in loud stage whispers, asked me if I'd lost my jacket three fucking times and practically force-fed me chicken soup. But I digress.

It's a low budget - $1m - movie, and it ocassionally shows. But the script is oh-so-sweet and really very funny. A certain sense of zeitgeist, as the opening act does a quick compilation of dates-from-hell, which I felt I might have been able to write better, but was, essentially, hackneyed.

After the movie, Mel & Sue interviewed Jennifer Westfeldt and Heather Juergensen. They co-wrote, co-star and co-produced the whole thing independently, and Jennifer even talked about her parents liquidating their pensions to help finance the film. Luckily, all the investors have made their money back, so you can sleep nights.

Originally an off-Broadway play entitled Lipstick, the pair spent almost five years making the movie, are totally dedicated to it, and can discuss it indefinitely. Heather says it's about "the disconnect that can happen between men and women" but I don't speak West-Coast-ese. Jennifer says it explores the complexity of sexuality, and I guess it does, in a lipstick-not-butch-lesbian way. And of course, the nice straight guy is there all along, and you never quite know what happens at the end.

All in all, a great mates-movie. A great date-movie. It won't change your life, but you'll have a giggle, and there is some fantastic dialogue. Just don't sit next to anyone who brings their Mother.

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