Tag: Juno Temple

Afternoon Delight

August 27th, 2013 — 5:56pm

Afternoon Delight***

Afternoon Delight-sp-  First time movie Writer/Director Jill Soloway (known for writing and directing TV’s Six Feet Under and other shows) pulls no punches as she takes on the young modern 3rd generation post feminist  woman represented by Rachel (Kathryn  Hahn ). This character is living in a beautiful home in  Silver Lake, California with the tall Los Angeles skyline in the background. She has one small child and is married to Jeff ( Josh Radnor) , a successful app designer. Their sex life has gone stale and they try to stimulate things by going to a local strip club where Rachel has a lap dance by McKenna (Juno Temple), a 20 year old beautiful stripper, (we understand that this is not an unheard of pastime in this generation). By coincidence a few days later  Rachel meets this young woman  (self defined as a sex worker) who has lost her place to stay and being the “do-gooder” that she is, Rachel  tries to help her out by giving her a temporary room in her house. It is through the study of these two women that Soloway (who won a Best Director Award at Sundance for this film) attempts to explore what contemporary female sexuality is all about . She does this not only by examining Rachel’s marital situation but through the attitude of McKenna who seemingly is very comfortable being paid to satisfy men’s sexual needs . Rachel’s friends reveal their inner feelings while loosened up by some alcohol at a girl’s gathering. There is discussion about connection between men and women and looking into your partner’s eyes during orgasm etc. There is a hint of the ability of women to want love and sensuality from men and women. Rachel even accompanies McKenna on a visit to a client. In seems that we are supposed to conclude that people should be happy with what they have.  But how do you really come to appreciate that? The film certainly makes a valiant effort to do this by stripping away all the airs and defensiveness that people frequently show to each other. There also is  great acting by Kathryn Hahn who conveys her pain, struggle and arousal in a very real and yet at times comedic manner. Jane Lynch plays a psychiatrist who initially was providing insight to Rachel but then deteriorates into a ridiculous character that has a need to talk about her own problems which don’t seem to be related to the themes of the movie. While perhaps we are sensitive to such satire but it seemed to detract from the movie. Whether there be enough left in this film to satisfy the 30 something woman and those who want to understand her, remains to be seen.


Comment » | 3 Stars, Comedy, Drama, Romance

Little Birds

June 28th, 2011 — 6:23am


This movie is by first time filmmaker Elgin James who, developed it  in a Sundance Workshop and it was accepted into the Sundance Film Festival which isn’t a  slam dunk for films that come up this way. James who wrote and directed movie comes from the streets of Boston and he chose to convey his gritty experiences through the characters of two teenage girls who come from the poverty stricken coastal town of Salton Sea in California and end up with some older boys on the streets of a grimy section of  Los Angeles. The strength of the film is the insight and development of  these two young girls Allison Huffman (Kay Panabaker) and Lily Hobart (Juno Temple) who are portrayed magnificently. Their attachment, dependency on each other and yet their differences unfold before us as they try to escape their environment. The storyline creates tension and anxiety. The three older boys with whom these girls connect David (Chris Coy), Louis (Carlos Pena) and John (Kyle Gallner) are as real as they can be and sadly operate just as you would expect them to. Compared to these five young people, the peripheral characters  are somewhat an enigma to us as their back stories are thin and vague. They do seem authentic and there are excellent performances by Leslie Mann, Kate Bosworth, Neil McDonough and particularly by JR Bourne who does a captivating dramatic role at the conclusion of the movie.  Although the little birds of this story had more reason to fly the coop than the daughters of many who are reading this now, we all know that when any teenager spreads her wings, anything can happen. This movie will be released in September and we will be rooting for it to fly. (2011)

1 comment » | 4 Stars, Drama


March 17th, 2011 — 7:43pm


Cracks sp- The title of this movie according Juno Temple, one of the stars of it who was at our screening, comes from South African slang meaning “crushes” such as being enamored with someone. The movie is set in the 1930s on a small island, which is part of Great Britain where there is a girl’s boarding school. The girls who seem to be of high school age are formed in teams and one of the teacher leaders is beautiful Miss G ( Eva Green who was a James Bond girl in previous movie ). The girls seem to idolize Miss G who tells them stories of her travels and encourages them they can do anything they set their mind to do. Di ( Juno Temple) is one of the more accomplished young girls and is a leader of the group, is a great swimmer and diver  and prime follower of Miss G. Along comes a new girl sent to the island by her Spanish aristocrat family  to join the school and their group. Fiamma (Maria Valverde) is beautiful, intelligent and an  even better diver (symbolic of her great skills). She is worldly and has traveled in ways that Miss G has only imagined. The dynamics of the relationship between teacher and the girls is dramatically changed and the meaning of “cracks” comes to a boiling point. On this magnificent island that gives you the feeling of everything being the same for so many years, we have a contrast of confusion and turmoil in these young women. The question that we have is will this interesting and powerful story grab and hold the audience. We found ourselves pondering that question, rather than empathizing and being taken up by the movie. Juno Temple who spoke with our audience after the film, related how first time Director Jordon Scott (daughter of Ridley Scott) had the actresses playing the students write an essay of what they imagined was their own back story which they read to each other so they would understand their characters. Perhaps one of the problems was that we as the audience were not in on this background. This may be why we found the  characters to be  somewhat “cardboard like”  and stereotypical. While they were quite different, we didn’t know them as individuals. In the end, nothing will ever be the same but we are not really sure why. (2011)

Comment » | 3 Stars, Drama

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