I’m so excited that Kelly Reichardt is taking time out of her very busy schedule to visit Indiana University Cinema this Friday. That’s tomorrow! Cinephiles who follow the American independent film scene recognize Kelly Reichardt as one of the great filmmakers working today. She’s an inspiration to all independent directors looking to bring their own unique visions forward and, perhaps most of all, for women directors working in a film industry not in the habit of fully acknowledging and embracing their creative work. I’ve been sharing about Reichardt’s visit online with the #DirectedbyWomen community and asked women directors to share a sentence or two about “what Kelly Reichardt’s films mean to you.” I was moved by the responses I received. I share a few below. I hope they offer you insight into why Reichardt’s work is so powerful. I appreciate these filmmakers taking time to share their insights. I hope you’ll reciprocate by exploring and spreading the word about their work as well. And if you’re in driving distance of Bloomington I hope to see you at the Cinema on Friday. Bring friends.
“Ms. Reichardt represents the true American independent filmmaker. Her films shine a light on gritty, authentic characters and places that are usually ignored by mainstream films. ‘Wendy and Lucy’ is one of my favorite films. It’s heartbreaking, full of truth and inspires me every time I watch it.” Aimee Morgan (Shelter)
“Kelly’s films mean to me: where film and poetry meet—I have never seen a filmmaker use the opening of a barn door (three times) in Certain Women and tell us everything we needed to know about what that character was feeling – Bravo Kelly!” Deborah Attoinese (On Directing)
“I am extremely grateful that Kelly Reichardt’s films exist. From the very first time I saw ‘Old Joy’ I sunk into my seat, transfixed, and felt strangely at home. There is an unmistakeable truth in her films, a feeling like, ‘I know this person. I know this situation. Even if this hasn’t happened to me, it is TRUE.’ And every film since then has been awaited with baited breath. And then there is the watching, the sinking into my seat, into the truth of the characters and their connections and their inner lives. Her films raise the bar for me as to where I want my films to go. Human, vulnerable, searching, interconnected. Very grateful that she and her work exist.” Emilie Blythe McDonald (Queen Anne’s Lace)
“Kelly Reichardt: She’s an example of the American independent filmmaker which lives today although in shorter supply than decades ago. She pushes the limits on each detail. That’s her vision. A primary component of an independent film.” Jennifer Hall Lee (Feminist: Stories from Women’s Liberation)
“Kelly is a brave storyteller because she understands that the most defining moments in someone’s life aren’t always the ones you’d expect. They are quiet moments of deep and precise details that stick with you for decades and decades, like a dream on repeat.” Victoria Negri (Gold Star)
There’s so much exciting film work happening. We can’t each keep up with everything that’s unfolding, but this week at IU Cinema film lovers have an opportunity to hear directly from one of America’s most accomplished filmmakers. This is an opportunity not to be missed. I can’t wait to share the experience with you. See you at the Cinema!
IU Cinema’s Kelly Reichardt: A Keen & Subtle Eye Film Series began with a screening of Old Joy on November 20 and continues with a screening of Reichardt’s latest film Certain Women tonight at 7:00 p.m. Certain Women screens one more time Saturday December 3 at 7:00 p.m. Kelly Reichardt is scheduled to be at IU Cinema in person on Friday December 2nd for a number of events: a Jorgensen Guest Filmmaker Lecture at 3:00 p.m. followed by 6:30 p.m. screening of her first feature film River of Grass and a 9:30 p.m. screening of Night Moves, starring Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning, and Peter Sarsgaard. The series concludes with a 6:30 p.m. screening of Wendy and Lucy on Sunday December 4.
Barbara Ann O’Leary, Indiana University Cinema’s Social Media and Web Specialist, is delighted to serve as editor of A Place for Film Blog. Barbara’s love of film—particularly the work of women filmmakers—inspired her to launch the #DirectedbyWomen Worldwide Film Viewing Party initiative.