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‘Party Girl’ review: fear of womanhood





Tender. Good balance between impressionism and plot-drivenness. Cabaret scenes are breathtaking. Well hand-picked soundtrack.


Absent in the most essential areas of making a successful womanhood conflict work.

Posted 18/09/2014 by

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The fear of womanhood, a theme that never gets old for me personally. Where it most of the times involves a female individual in her late 20’s or 30’s Party Girl’s protagonist is in her 60’s, making the weight of her situation more ponderous. Party Girl is a semi-biographic story about Angelique Litzenburger, played by Angelique Litzenburger. Also her kids are played by her real life kids and her real life son was one of the directors. So basically, it’s a sort of contemporary reality tv piece. There lies my problem with Party Girl, because of their bond with their subject. Connecting to your subject is a plus but not in a way like this. It results in a loving, tame, non-critical punch.


However, that gives Party Girl a certain tenderness and it results into some beautiful scenes. Not coincidentally, all my favorite scenes are with Angelique’s taken away daughter by social services Cynthia. The scenes mother and daughter share are very poignant. Besides those scenes the film has not much going for itself. Party Girl gets quite repetitive, because we follow Angelique slander from ordinary boring family gatherings back to her former home the nightclub. The handheld style of filming is a great fit and i loved how Julien Poupard added candy-crushed visuals in the cabaret scenes showing the glamour attraction of it and create a certain feel for the viewer why it’s kind of hard to let go of such a dreamworld.


The music choices are impeccable, great work of Nicolas Weil, Sylvain Ohrel and Alexandre Lier. The climax is pretty good and shows a bit of that punch i was missing in the other two acts of the film. This is where the doubts of Angelique surface, but were almost invisible before this moment. I would have like to have seen this exposed and subtly integrated through the entire duration of the movie. Even though i was not quite sold on the filmmaking i have to give praise for the Cassavetes-like registration. The ending is perfect for a themed movie like Party Girl and a wanderous lethargic individual like Angelique.


Party Girl is a film with a very solid premise and has some elements that are pretty valuable but slips in essential areas to work for me. But i like to remind you that most of my problems with Party Girl are personal preferations and the filmmaking-level is pretty decent. Party Girl just falls flat on the layered details and i’m just a high-maintenanced filmbuff.

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Breaking through cinema one movie at a time. Aesthetics above all, Antonioni, Malick & Godard are the G.O.A.T.s. I have a gargantuan soft spot for Vanessa Hudgens. Benoit Debie = THE cinematographer. Don't make war, make art.


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