Showing Up

Showing Up ★★★★★

Wry and quizzical, but sincerely kind to its characters. And to hear Kelly Reichardt describe production, it sounds like that humor and kindness extends to how everyone treated each other on set.

Showing Up also shows Reichardt's incisive self-awareness about artmaking as a selfish, or at least self-centered, ideal, and how that ideal balances with natural human affinity. Lizzy seems curmudgeonly hermetic, and outwardly aspires for time alone with her craft, sans the unpredictable impositions of other people. And yet: Lizzy is the only artist of the film's main characters whose work depicts humans. Lizzy can't suppress her care for those who want her in their lives: friends, admirers, family, colleagues. That care enriches and shapes Lizzy's work and its reception, her artistic process and her menial responsibilities, and each private and public aspect of her life. She may act the grump, but her actions towards everyone from her brother to a bird say otherwise.

@MatthewEng has a superb write-up on Showing Up on Reverse Shot.

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