It’s nice to watch indie filmmakers take a leap and stick the landing. Filmmaker Alex Ross Perry went from the world of micro-indies to bigger budget indies and while that jump may not seem so big to the outsider, his astronomical growth has positioned him as an heir apparent to Woody Allen, Noah Baumbach, Whit Stillman and their ilk thanks to the hyper literate world of last year’s “Listen Up Philip.”
But perhaps to show that he’s got lots of tricks up his sleeve beyond just erudite and acidic characters, Perry takes a strong left turn with his latest film, “Queen of Earth.” A psychological drama with caustic humor, Perry takes a page out of the Roman Polanski playbook (think “Repulsion” and “Rosemarie’s Baby”) to create a claustrophobic, paranoid chamber drama about eroding sanity and crumbling friendship between two females mired in class and privilege issues (read our review from the Berlin Film Festival).
Mostly a two-hander starring “Man Men” lead Elisabeth Moss and “Inherent Vice” co-star Katherine Waterston, “Queen Of Earth” centers on a weekend getaway upstate where a woman unravels when her best friend suddenly turns on her when she is at her most vulnerable. Here’s the official synopsis:
Catherine has entered a particularly dark period in her life: her father, a famous artist whose affairs she managed, has recently died, and on the heels of his death she’s dumped by her boyfriend James. Looking to recuperate, Catherine heads out to her best friend Virginia’s lake house for some much needed relaxation. However, once Catherine arrives relaxation proves impossible to find, as she is overcome with memories of time spent at the same house with James the year before. As Catherine reaches out to Virginia with attempts at connection, Virginia begins spending increasing amounts of time with a local love interest, Rich, and fissures in the relationship between the two women begin to appear, sending Catherine into a downward spiral of delusion and madness. A bracing, eerie look at the deep bonds of friendship and the horrific effects of such bonds being frayed, “Queen of Earth” is a thrilling examination of a deeply complex relationship between two miserable women.
Including appearances by Patrick Fugit, Kentucker Audley and Kate Lyn Sheil, IFC Films will release “Queen Of Earth” on August 26th in New York with a national rollout to follow. Watch the first trailer below.