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Madeline’s Madeline

The third feature from acclaimed director Josephine Decker is a jazz-infused fever dream that tackles head-first the thorny themes of cultural production and appropriation.

Dir-Scr Josephine Decker
Prod Krista Parris, Elizabeth Rao
With Helena Howard, Miranda July, Molly Parker
USA
2018
94min
Sales Visit Films

‘The emotions you are having are not your own. They are someone else’s. You are not the cat – you are inside the cat.’ So begins the woozy rollercoaster that is Madeline’s Madeline, where nothing is what it seems. Madeline (an extraordinary Helena Howard) is a biracial 16-year-old with unspecified mental health problems, the persistence of which have driven a wedge between daughter and mother (Miranda July). Having become an active member of an experimental theatre troupe, Madeline finds a surrogate mother in the ambitious director Evangeline, who begins to mine Madeline’s delicate mental state and stormy maternal relationship for the purposes of ‘collaboration’. But what does Evangeline really want? Infusing febrile life into the mother-daughter drama, Decker’s film will leave your pulse racing and your mind reeling.

Jemma Desai

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