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Fourteen (Dir. Dan Sallitt, 2019)
*From May 15-21, Fourteen will be available to stream via Grasshopper
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Mara and Jo, in their twenties, have been close friends since middle school. Jo, the more outgoing figure, is a social worker who runs through a series of brief but intense relationships. Mara, a less splashy personality than Jo, bounces among teacher aide jobs while trying to land a position in elementary education, and writes fiction in her spare time. She too has a transient romantic life, though she seems to settle down after meeting Adam, a mild-mannered software developer. It soon becomes apparent that Jo, despite her intellectual gifts, is unreliable in her professional life, losing and acquiring jobs at a troubling rate. Substance abuse may be responsible for Jo’s instability… but some observers suspect a deeper problem. Over the course of a decade, the more stable Mara sometimes tries to help, sometimes backs away to preserve herself, but never leaves behind her powerful childhood connection with Jo.
A highly affecting portrait of female friendship.
David Erlich, Indiewire
Two outstanding performances... Medel is marvelous, utterly engaging. Kuhling is a knockout.
Neil Young, The Hollywood Reporter
A wonderful, subtly devastating film from a voice in American independent cinema that will hopefully become better known.
Ian Mantagni, Little White Lies
A bittersweet breakup movie. It’s rare in cinema to see such a fine-grained portrait of friendship, particularly a spiky female one.
Jamie Dunn, Sight & Sound
Rich with scenes of affection and reconciliation... the most charming thing about Fourteen is the degree to which Sallitt finds a balance between his own brand of independent filmmaking and the kind of French middle-class realism he’s clearly influenced by.
Patrick Gamble, Cinevue