A sharply perceptive chronicler of the American West, award-winning author Maile Meloy found her cinematic match in independent filmmaker Kelly Reichardt, whose work (Old Joy, Wendy and Lucy) shares her contemplative approach to capturing the rhythms of everyday life in that part of the country. A few years ago, the director requested to adapt a handful of Meloy’s short stories, and the result is Certain Women, a quietly haunting film that follows the interlocking stories of three women grappling with the limitations of their small-town surroundings: a lawyer (Laura Dern) dealing with an unstable client, a wife and mother (Michelle Williams) navigating the fraught dynamics of her marriage, and a night-school teacher (Kristen Stewart) who strikes up an ambiguous relationship with a ranch hand (Lily Gladstone). In this excerpt from an interview on our newly released edition of the film, Meloy talks with us about how her childhood experiences in Montana have informed her writing and what it felt like to have her words brought to the screen.
Career Women in the Land of Lubitsch
Critics Molly Haskell and Farran Smith Nehme talk about the highly idiosyncratic heroines who populate Ernst Lubitsch’s comedies, including the protagonist of his final film, Cluny Brown.
Ritwik Ghatak’s Pursuit of Truth Beyond Realism
Acclaimed Indian filmmakers Saeed Akhtar Mirza and Kumar Shahani discuss how the Bengali master mixed expressionism and naturalism in his devastating domestic tragedy The Cloud-Capped Star.
A Howl of Defiance from the Italian Sixties
Marco Bellocchio’s subversive debut feature, Fists in the Pocket, emerged out of a period of social unrest, taking aim at both bourgeois values and Catholic hypocrisy.