Her Will to Hold On: A Review of Tallulah

Unnumbered Movie Review #6

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Tallulah is a film that was recently release on Netflix. It follows the story of woman who kidnaps a baby and hides out in her boyfriend’s mother’s apartment. It was written and directed by Sian Heder and it stars Ellen Page, Allison Janney, and Tammy Blanchard.

In this movie, Ellen Page plays a fantastically confused young woman named Tallulah. Tallulah lives in her van with her boyfriend, Nico, who is played by Evan Jonigkeit. The couple drive around the country living off of stolen food and unpaid credit cards. When Nico abandons Tallulah, she drives to New York to find him. While there she finds Carolyn, a married woman who is in New York City have an affair. Tallulah takes care of Madison while Carolyn is out for the night and in the morning, kidnaps her. Once she kidnaps Madison, Tallulah takes her to Margo, played by Allison Janney, and stays at her apartment.

Each of the women in this movie is suffering from the emotional scars left from family members.

Tallulah tells a story about how her mother abandoned her when she was six years old. Her mother left her on an apartment building stoop and told her to wait. After waiting until it got dark and cold, a man pulls up in a car and tells her that he is her father and that she is going to live with him now.

Margo’s husband came out and left her for another man. After their separation, Margo’s (adult) son ran away from home.

Carolyn’s husband is verbally abusive and tells her constantly that she is a terrible mother. Throughout the film Carolyn is constantly worried that her husband is going to leave her.

Each of these women is in pain because of how their families treated them. All three actresses express’s this pain very but out of all of them the stand out performance has to be Tammy Blanchard, who plays Carolyn. Her alcohol fueled, emotional unstable performance is outstanding.

But besides the performances themselves, the relationship between Tallulah and Margo is another high point in the movie. Throughout the film they develop a surrogate mother and daughter relationship that is heartwarming. Each character gives the other a little of what they need, the two seem like they began to heal their own wounds through each other.

Even though the movie does not have a happy ending, the characters seem able to let go of some of their pain and in the final scene, which is a dream sequence, we see that at least one of them has regained her will to hold on.

Carolyn, who is the only woman in this movie who relies on a man, does not have much of a resolution to her story. At the end of the movie she gets her baby back, but is still with her abusive husband who will most likely abandon her in the end. I think this implies a message to the audience that women, and maybe people in general, can’t expect to cultivate a happy life if they rely on someone else.

Thank you for reading. Please like this and follow this blog. This was a shorter review than normal so if you think I missed anything, please feel free to leave and comment and let me know!

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