A Woman, a Part
Anna Baskin, in her early forties, is at a crossroads. The Emmy Award-winning actress from a popular TV series has reached an emotional and professional crisis. Burnt out, she depends on Ritalin and her overzealous assistant to get her through each day. She decides to move from Los Angeles to New York, where she hopes to rediscover herself with her old theatre company. The reception she receives after all these years is awkward, however.
She has to start again at the bottom, sleeping on an air mattress and living out of cardboard boxes. Her crisis worsens when she finds out that a playwright friend has included a self-obsessed, suicidal character in his latest play, modelled on Anna. He has also used some personal information she shared with him long ago. A painful confrontation becomes inevitable.
The naturalistic style of this debut serves the psychology of this woman in crisis, played by Maggie Siff (Mad Men). Her inner compass has gone haywire owing to her over-identification with her public image: a text-messaging workaholic with no real life of her own. Now the big questions can no longer be ignored: what do we want from life, how do we want others to see us, and how can we shake off a public role? Female emancipation plays a central role in all work by Elisabeth Subrin, who has previously investigated psychological disorder and the legacy of feminism through installations, videos and photographs.