Certain Women, the latest from Kelly Reichardt, arrives in UK cinemas this week (read our review here). Freda Cooper talked to the director about using short stories as the basis for a feature film – and why she’d never make a movie in New York.
Based on three Montana-set short stories by Maile Meloy, Certain Women sees Reichardt return to the never-ending landscapes that had such presence in Meek’s Cutoff, her pioneer western from 2010. This time round, she’s created something of a modern western, mixing present day jobs and situations with others that hark back to the days of the old west. The stories focus on significant moments in the lives of four women, played by Laura Dern, Michelle Williams, Kristen Stewart and Lily Gladstone, whose lives subtly interlock.
The film was shot on location in the American North West, partly because that’s where the stories were set, but also because of Reichardt’s liking for escaping the big city. A New York resident for some years, she admits she could never make a movie there: she prefers being away from home, which gives her the freedom to concentrate purely on movie making. Not that it’s a holiday: her film unit is a tightly run machine with, to use her words, “no room for people standing around”.
You can listen to the interview in full in the player below…
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