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WOMEN IS LOSERS (United States, dir. Lissette Feliciano) (*** out of ****)
Set over a few years in San Fransisco, we first meet Celina (Lorenze Izzo) as a student in high school in 1967. She becomes pregnant which sets off a series of unfortunate events as she also wishes to make a name for herself at the bank she winds up working at and supporting her child, even with a complicated father who returned from the Vietnam war.
I loved how the movie is self aware and pokes fun at not only the dated stereotypes of the time, but even notes they are a low-budget movie and you’ll have to forgive a few of the shortcomings (going even so far as to note the small crew filming around them in an early scene, which gave me a big laugh). We’ll have a few moments where characters break the fourth wall and talk directly to the screen, or even a low-budget black-and-white segment that is clearly tongue-in-cheek but also makes great points about how our culture has changed over decades.
Leading the charge in WOMEN IS LOSERS is a fearless performance by Lorenze Izzo (you may remember her as Francesca Capucci in ONCE UPON A TIME…IN HOLLYWOOD) as our hero Celina, who is a small fish in a big pond and will stop at nothing to chase her dreams. It’s a pretty complicated performance with many emotions throughout, and Izzo is incredible throughout. She’s backed by a group of talented performers, many of whom new to these eyes, but there is also a welcome small role by Liza Weil (who will life in infamy as Paris Geller from GILMORE GILRS) as a bank manager who is definitely sick of the way things are run at her branch.
Even at just a quick 84 minutes, Feliciano gets a strong female perspective across with WOMEN IS LOSERS, and I also greatly admired its lively and fun presentation of the era along with a good message about finding yourself in a difficult world even when you think everyone is against you.
WOMEN IS LOSERS is now streaming on SxSW Online. Direct Link: Women is Losers
This film and many others like it will be showing at the virtual South By Southwest taking place March 16-20th. For more information and to register for the festival, point your browser to www.sxsw.com!