Tuesday, September 13, 2011

On Higher Ground

Ok, I admit it. Whenever I hear that there's a film by a female director coming out, I cringe. It scares me. Terrifies me, even.

Maybe it's because I've been overexposed to the Nancy Meyers and the Nora Ephrons of the world. Perhaps their need to have women constantly fall over, dance around (alone, mind you) to 70s classics, and ultimately find the frumpy-or-arrogant-(but-she'll-change-him) man of their dreams is what has me running for the nearest vomitorium when the words "woman" and "director" are paired.

And, yes. That makes me sad. It makes me as sad as it should make you. Because, first of all, there shouldn't need to be a differentiation. Shouldn't a director be just...a director? We don't say a "British Male Director" when discussing Daldry's work. Nor do we say French-Polish Male Director Roman Polanski. All the modifiers get to be too much. And I long for the day when "woman director" seems to be too much, as well.

And yet, I still fear these films. Because I'm afraid that they'll be too much an "emotional journey" with no plot (vomit) or about what color dress she should wear to the ball (vomit vomit) or how to find the perfect man. Any of which are just awful, and we've seen them all.

So I sit down with myself, when I hear those two words, and I say "Ok, Miranda. It's all right. Remember Bend It Like Beckham? A woman directed that. And Big? Also a woman. What about Hurt Locker? Little Man Tate? And who could forget American Psycho? So...films directed by women don't all have to be cheesy romantic journeys. They can be about sports (A League of Their Own), and identity (Boys Don't Cry), and high school (Fast Times At Ridgemont High), and boxing (Girlfight), and poverty (Ratcatcher), and a couple of stoner dudes (Wayne's World). And you're sitting there saying, "women directed all of those?" Yeah. They did.

And I present to you Higher Ground, a film that should fall somewhere between those I fear (27 Dresses) and those I love (After the Wedding, Winter's Bone). Because, yes, Higher Ground is about an emotional journey. And I take issue with the structure, in some ways, as it doesn't always work.

But, oh - the direction. What a breath of fresh air. A real film, maybe the first, that struggles with issues of religion in an honest way without judging, and without preaching. From IMDB - "Higher Ground [explores] the landscape of a tight-knit spiritual community thrown off-kilter when one of their own begins to question her faith. Inspired by screenwriter Carolyn S. Briggs' memoir This Dark World, the film tells the story of a thoughtful woman's struggles with belief, love, and trust - in human relationships as well as in God" (IMDB).

The film doesn't tell me that I must be Christian to understand it, nor that I should be mocking it as an atheist. I saw the film with two very differently-religious folks (an atheist, and one raised in faith, while I've identified as agnostic, pagan, and now fall closest to atheism), and we all left loving it. It's a film that asks questions without giving definitive answers. Most importantly, however, here we have a female protagonist who isn't a hooker, isn't a maid or a writer or some other "women-friendly" job. She also isn't a typical love interest. She's the lead, and she's searching for answers, and it's not always clear (even to her) if she's right, or wrong. She's real.

So I encourage you to go see this film if you have the chance. It's honest. And you won't leave caring whether or not the film was directed by a woman, because, in the end, it doesn't matter. What matters is that it was directed well. And it's wonderful. Trailer below:

Disclaimer: Yes, we've strayed from our usual letter format on this post; because we think it's important to put it out there, and because we're eager to encourage the Universe, if it's listening, to pay attention - and get more of these wonderfully-directed films out there! :)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Pendulum > Brandon Flowers

Dear Live Nation,

Thank you for informing me about Pendulum's concert in Las Vegas (even though I am already seeing them in LA).  However, you give your corporate henchmen away and you are quite mistaken when you suggest that if I like Pendulum, I may also like (and want tickets for) a Brandon Flowers concert.  WRONG!

Love always,

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Dear everyone on Twitter/Facebook/The Internetz who keeps posting this,

Who's playing bonnaroo festival this year? WHO CARES?!?! I'm so sick of seeing this post everywhere. 
And dear eminem, go back to 1999 where you belong.


When It Rains, You're Gonna Get Crap Coffee

Dear people in the Hollywood coffee bean, 
You guys can all suck it! Yer a bunch of bloody basterds! 

p.s. Other experiences/issues include:

It's been a bad morning for coffee shops... I asked for a strawberry Italian soda 3 times, and the girl wandered around randomly touching things and tried to give me a coffee with a strawberry shot in it (ewwww) before finally admitting they no longer make them, they're just still in the menu for funsies I guess. WTF - J lady

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Hey Hey! You You! Stay outta my fridge!

Dear People I Have To Work With,

Please stop stealing and using things in the fridge that do not belong to you.

the end,

Friday, August 6, 2010

Mi Vida Loca

Dear Life,
I swear you had a pause button, somewhere.

Monday, June 7, 2010

WTF Facebook Relationship Status

Dear Facebook Friends,

Why am I getting so many congratulations from you, now that I'm in a relationship?  Shouldn't I have been getting congratulated for being my awesome (previously) single self too?  I kick ass dammit!  With or without a man! If I had known I would receive so much attention I would've listed my entire relationship history on facebook just so that I could get kudos each time. 

Love Always, Single or Not,