Movie Review: ‘MISTRESS AMERICA’ – Greta Gerwig Comedy….. More of Drama (in a good way)

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Mistress America is a Comedy that i appreciate more for its dramatic qualities, it focuses on Tracy (Lola Kirke), a college student with a not so exciting life and Brooke (Greta Gerwig), her soon-to-be step sister who helps spark some excitement in her life, and it is their constantly evolving relationship that had me interested throughout. It was essentially a fun, and very energetic film with very witty comedy that wasn’t afraid to go to the emotional side when it needed to. But the real star of the show was the charming, light hearted relationship that is highlighted throughout the entire film. The chemistry between Tracy and Brooke was really fun to watch, these two opposites worked really well together and provided many great emotional moments, many charming moments, and some dashes of well timed comedy. The performances were also very good because the actresses really nailed their characters’ very distinct personalities, it threw me off at first how exuberant and dramatic some of their actions were but you soon realise that it really does fit the characters well and make them seem very authentic.

L-R: Tracy (Lola Kirke), Brooke (Greta Gerwig), Nicolette (Jasmine Cephas-Jones), and Tony (Matthew Shear) make a spontaneous visit in MISTRESS AMERICA.

The supporting cast was alright i guess, they were mostly there for some comedic qualities but they did at some moments add to the emotional weight of the film and at times did factor in to the plot. One of the characters, Tony, played by Matthew Shear i did really like, he was a well done and entertaining character for most of the film who added to developing Tracy’s character, just at some moments he became a little too quirky and seemed a little bit forced. Hell, talking about quirky, there is a whole sequence after the half way point of the film where they make it to someones house and for like the next 20 minutes the entire tone of the film becomes very weird and any seriousness the film had was overpowered by some of the silly stuff that happens. Theres this whole thing about weed and apple bongs, and theres this pregnant lady who just hangs around and a neighbour who was just really weird… I didn’t hate this sequence, it was kinda fun in a weird way, but it didn’t quite fit in with the rest of the film and probably could have been handled differently.

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So in the end, this was a very charming film that did have a witty comedic fell to it but what i really liked about the film was the character exploration and character relationships that drive the film forward. It was an interesting story that had me engaged for most of the film. The tone does tend to alter constantly throughout the film, many times it felt natural to the progression of the film but sometimes it felt like a different film all together. But it is a fun film that is light on comedy but what it misses there it does make up for in a great character story with great character development.

6.6/10

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