Wednesday, January 26, 2011
THE RUNAWAYS (2010)
Written & Directed By: Flora Sigismondi
Based on the book “Neon Angel” by Cherrie Currie
Cinematography By: Benoit Debie
Editor: Richard Chew
Cast: Kristen Stewart, Dakota Fanning, Michael Shannon, Scout Taylor-Compton, Alia Shawkat, Riley Keough, Tatum O’Neal, Brett Cullen, Robert Romanus
Girl Empowerment in a positive at first then not so positive image. The film attempts down & dirty at times trying to shock but feels realistic.
The film has great performances and the cast shows talent in playing and singing their counterparts. They all play live. It shows that they are init for the long haul of realism. While they dress scantily clad it feels uncomfortable at times it feels more like the cast are playing dress up.
It would have been nice if the film to include more stories about all members of the band instead of just focusing of Joan Jett and Cherrie Currie even in the ending Scroll. I was looking for a more definative story of the band for narrative reasons making it a bond between the two leads. Michael Shannon is great. The scary part of his weirdo role is that he is playing a real person.
In all honesty I have been fascinated by this band after seeing Cherrie Currie in the film FOXES and Joan Jett In the film LIGHT OF DAY. So I was hyped about this film especially with Joan jett Producing. Thinking finally a insider’s story as to what happened with the group. Especially since she notoriously never gives interviews or talks about her time in the band. Plus there was a previous documentary about the band that still lacked jett’s opinion but included everyone else’s. That documentary more or less came off like a home video. It still felt like it was missing much information as does this film. Unfortunately I don’t think the full story of the runaways and their experiences will ever be known by the public. Only the people who lived it will the complete story but like the band I admire the film because it does so much with so little. It is a excellent debut film from director Floria Sigismondi who had previously only directed music videos. I feel she will be judged more on her next film because from this film it’s more a question of did her talent make this film as good as it is or is it the material. Maybe a combination of both.
With Joan Jett producing though I am left to wonder if her hands were tied somewhat by her being around and not being able to take liberties. I am sure it greatly helped shape Kristin Stewart’s performance as Joan. Which does show Stewart’s talent especially when away from the TWILIGHT series of films. Dakota fanning is good as well as she seems to be trying to make her way into more serious adult roles.
The film is worth a look