“Certain Women” Review ✦✦✧✧✧

4 March, 2017

Director: Kelly Reichardt
Screenwriter: Kelly Reichardt
Director of Photography: Christopher Blauvelt
Michelle Williams, Kristen Stewart, Laura Dern

Synopsis: A group of women whose lives are subconsciously intersected struggle to find fulfilment in the modern world while dealing with a variety of professional and personal issues.

Certain Women Review:

On par with Pablo Larraín’s “Jackie” for most tedious and unnecessary female-focused film of the year, “Certain Women” sees intersecting lives slithering together at a snail’s pace as Kelly Reichardt overthinks the human condition to the point of insanity in yet another unrelatable think piece. Set around a series of exceedingly uncontrived yet mostly awkward encounters, the movie emerges from the most self-indulgent regions of cinema with very little to say outside of its artsy interpretations of female living.

Relying heavily on the meaning that viewers will so desperately assign to it in their enthusiastic moments of madness, the movie caters to a niche audience but fails to earn any genuine merits outside of its vapid content. Told with the same overblown rhetoric as the films of Carlos Reygadas and Ruben Östlund, “Certain Women” presents a handful of themes and talking points in such an excessively dull manner that it becomes a complete slog of a movie before it has even established the main bulk of its ideas. There’s no real underpinning to its inflections, pauses, or meanderings as Reichardt’s obsession with overlapping the quotidian with the unusual creates a self-indulgent and downbeat film without any flavour to its wishy-washy social commentary.

While Reichardt briefly grazes past something raw and tangible in her final segment, mostly thanks to the wonderful Kristen Stewart, these final fleeting moments are barely enough to make up for the snoozefest that steals the predominant tone of the narrative, particularly when the respective actresses struggle to make their scenes feel short of miserable in all their cooperative laboriousness. “Certain Women” is a movie where significance lies in inference, rendering its lacklustre scenes about as interesting as a midweek book club run by a group of irritable pensioners.


Review Date
Certain Women