I fell in love with Black Butterflies when I saw it in preparation for last year's Tribeca Film Festival. The film shows an actor — Carice Van Houten — and a director — Paula van der Oest — at the top of their game. Van Houten won the best actress award at the festival. I was able to meet them both last year prior to the Tribeca Film Festival and I was also so pleased that Black Butterflies was included in this year's Athena Film Festival lineup.
Here's what I wrote when I saw it last year:
Black Butterflies is the tumultuous life story of South African poet Ingrid Jonker who struggled desperately to gain the love of the men in her life. Her father (played by Rutger Hauer) was an official in the apartheid government who censored work like Ingrid's and felt she was an embarrassment to him. The two of them disagreed on politics and she could never get past the fact that he was never going to agree with and support her work. She also seemed to fall in love with inappropriate men and the love of her life novelist Jack Cope (Liam Cunningham) served as a father figure/lover, and while they loved each other deeply Ingrid had many deep demons that hounded her and their relationship deteriorated. Carice Van Houten gives a very intense and penetrating portrait of a delicate and incredibly talented female artist who just had a very difficult time surviving and after one too many betrayals by her father she no longer was able to continue.
Here's an exclusive clip courtesy of the folks at Tribeca which is releasing the film here in the US. The film opens in NY at Cinema Village this Friday, March 2 and is available on demand.
Here is the q and a from the Athena Film Festival following the screening of Black Butterflies with producer Susan Cartsonis and director Paula Van Der Oest