With many intriguing films opening this weekend, I had to make the difficult choice of choosing between the limited release of Ingrid Goes West or the blockbuster DC team-up in Justice League. However, having made the mistake of missing smaller films in the past, I realised I would have to see Ingrid Goes West as this week is the only chance to see the film after 3pm! Cineworld continues to have a poor schedule for award-worthy films, it looks like I will have to miss big names like The Florida Project and Call Me By My Name. Although, having heard early reviews of Justice League, I might not have missed out on much from the final big superhero film of 2017.
I had seen early trailed for Ingrid Goes West and taken an interest as a fan of Aubrey Plaza. The film almost acts as a realistic episode of Black Mirror to warn of the effects of social media, in particular, Instagram and living a ‘perfect’ life. As a young person who probably spends too much time and shares too much information on social media, the film’s message did hit home, it gave a great example of the danger of social media. I think the film created a great juxtaposition between Ingrid and Taylor, played by the intriguing Elizabeth Olsen, showing that even though Ingrid blatantly created a fake life for herself, Taylor also exaggerated elements of her life.
Plaza has great comedic timing and manages to pull off a more dramatic role with ease. She carries the film well, her character is scary yet vulnerable, making it easy to get behind her as an audience despite her worrying behaviour. I really enjoyed the facial expression Plaza brings to the character, one of her funniest scenes was when she attempts to ‘bump into’ Taylor in the hipster store. She had great chemistry with O’Shea Jackson Jr, who I am glad to see is continuing his acting career after Straight Outta Compton. Jackson felt a natural fit for the comedic character, his many references to Batman were a great running joke throughout the film. I hope he decides to continue in the comedic genre, he would make a great addition to a bigger film’s ensemble.
Olsen is having a great year in my eyes, I really enjoyed her in this and thought it was a great change from her character in this year’s Wind River. Throughout the film, the screenplay manages to weave in elements of doubt of her character Taylor’s perfect life, but her final argument with Ingrid lies everything out on the table. I wish we would have got to have seen Taylor go through a little bit of a breakdown, show that her character wasn’t too far away from Ingrid. She rounded off a cast of actors who are detined to make it big, they all stand out in their roles and I’m sure we will be hearing more from the three of them in the years to come.
Ingrid Goes West takes the risk of telling a modern story in a modern way. It is one of the first films I know to wholely incorporate social media into a story, even though we have been using the plotforms for almost a decade. The sript delves into some elements fo mental health, but I don’t think it does the conditions that Ingrid is suffering from any benefit, it would have been good to see Ingrid actually be treated for her suicide at the end of the film. Instead the film decides to reward the character with a social media following, a worrying decision as this could encourage some viewers to do the same. But it manages to paint Ingrid in a warm way, not truely awful and not too far away from how we act in reality. A modern drama which shows of great things to come for its actors and its writer and director Matt Spicer.
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