This ever-evolving landscape is the setting of “Eden,” an “Inside Llewyn Davis”-like portrait of a musician chasing something significantly less idealistic than fame: sustainability. Hansen-Løve wrote the film with her brother, Sven Løve, a ’90s electronic DJ on whose experience the story is based. In the film, de Givry’s character maintains a dedication to a life in electronic music that supersedes all other concerns, including financial stability and, ultimately, the process of growing up.
“Sometimes it is important to stop, take a look back, take time to think, and maybe make real decisions,” said de Givry of his character’s struggle. “He just woke up 15 years later and he hadn’t built anything.”
Greta Gerwig, who also appears in the film as one of de Givry’s many romantic pursuits, said she could relate to the struggling artist persona. “Losing faith in your art is a huge part of the struggle,” she said. “You go through these times, again and again, which the movie portrays so beautifully, where you think maybe this is not working out at all, maybe I should get out. But it’s hard to cut your losses.” Gerwig said this conundrum amounts to sunk opportunity costs, an economic term for the difficulty of moving on from a major investment. “What I love about this movie is that it really shows the length of that journey. Not letting the artist inside you die, even if you let a certain part of the dream go.”
But Gerwig’s ability to relate to the film’s subject matter is entirely separate from the musical elements. “I wouldn’t call myself ‘into the DJ scene,'” said Gerwig. “I have friends who are DJs, like James Murphy. I was really into the DJ scene at his wedding. But generally I’m not at the clubs. I’ve never been to a rave.”
Why, then, did she participate in a film that chronicles the evolution of electronic music? “I thought Mia Hansen-Løve was a true auteur, and I always wanted to work with her,” said Gerwig, who outlined her admiration for the director’s critically-acclaimed 2009 film “The Father of My Children.” “Mia’s empathy for her characters and her ability to use the language of cinema to communicate real human depth is extraordinary,” Gerwig continued. “She’s a humanist.”
Though she may not be into electronic music, Gerwig did profess her love for a certain New York rapper: “I’m listening to the new A$AP Rocky all the time right now. That’s it. That’s the only thing I’m listening to. I love it so much.”
Broad Green Pictures opens “Eden” on June 19.