Me And You And Everyone We Know

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The worlds of newly single shoe salesman Richard (Hawkes) and lonely artist Christine (July) collide when she walks into his shop. Meanwhile, his sons (Ratcliff and Thompson) are also learning about intimacy — the former via an internet chat room, the lat


Writer/director/star Miranda July has created a beguiling treat with her debut feature, deservedly the winner of the Camera D’Or at this year’s Cannes Festival. It would be easy to saddle her film with the usual ‘indie’ adjectives (“offbeat”, “quirky”, “kooky”), but its freshness and honesty defy such lazy characterisation.

As struggling artist Christine, July’s clear faith in the redemptive qualities of romantic love is deeply seductive. Meanwhile, her object of desire, Richard (Hawkes), is a man so frustrated by life’s banal disappointments that he sets fire to his hand in front of his two young sons just to make something happen.

Around this central pair are a coterie of damaged adults and confused kids — so far, so miserable, but far from it; the script is shot through with a vicious wit that lays bare the innate ridiculousness of human beings, while taking pity on our childlike vulnerabilites. With moments that will bug you for days (a teenage blow-job contest, “back and forth poop...”), July’s tender, original movie is a wonderfully uplifting experience.

A frank look at 21st century mores, this succeeds in saying new things about anxieties as old as the human race.