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Concussion
★★★☆☆
First run Screening room

Concussion is the latest provocative indie film début by a female writer/director in a year that has been particularly strong for this type of picture. Movies by women that explore the sexual lives and desires of women--like Jill Soloway’s Afternoon Delight, Maggie Carey's The To-Do-List, and even Lake Bell's In a World­--are one of the most welcome additions to modern cinema. One of the principal pleasures of this this new crop of female-centered movies, besides the fresh perspectives they bring to familiar storylines, is the opportunities they create for rich and nuanced performances by great actresses who don’t normally get leading roles. Stacie Passon’s Concussion tells the story of Abby, a lesbian housewife board with suburban domesticity who begins as secret life in New York City. The picture stars Robin Weigert, best known for playing the drunk, foul-mouthed but lovable Calamity Jane HBO’s Deadwood. Weigert elevates the film well beyond the generic L-Word-style combination of titillating girl-on-girl soft-core and absurdly soapy melodrama it easily could have been. Concussion is a rich character study of a woman at a crossroads and there is much to be gained by watching her attempts to discover what she wants from middle age. Unfortunately, Carey doesn’t find a way to create a satisfying resolution to her story. Clearly part of the point is that women like Abby require more complex narratives than the traditional three-act movie structure can provide. But while the film avoids sliding down all the usual overbeaten paths of so many relationship pictures, it fails to leave us with a full understanding of Abby's experience .

Directed by Stacie Passon
Produced by Rose Troche

Written by Stacie Passon

With: Robin Weigert, Maggie Siff, Johnathan Tchaikovsky, Ben Shenkman, Emily Kinney, Laila Robins, and Janel Moloney

Cinematography: David Kruta
Editing: Anthony Cupo
Music: Barb Morrison

Runtime: 96 min
Release Date: 05 December 2013
Aspect Ratio: 2.35 : 1
Color