Make no mistake, Strange Girls is a strange movie. Or, well, this is a very good movie about two, well, strange people. I guess I’ve already talked myself into a hole and it’s still early. One thing – I have this on an old ipad that barely works any more so, if you’re interested, I can’t tell you where to find it any more but – in true Film Miasma fashion, I didn’t look very hard. I didn’t see it on youtube and I can’t really find any pictures from it other than the poster. I’ll tell you what I think about it and, if you’re truly compelled, I bet it wouldn’t be too hard to come across – I bet you could find it one some DVD somewhere, but anyway. This is one of those movies that I liked – probably because I wish I had written it or at least been a part of the team that made it but it might not be for everyone – or anyone I guess.
It starts out with two not traditionally romanticized, runway or underwear ad model type red headed twins escapin’ from a mental hospital to live their lives on their own, to avoid separation. I was an only child with a brother from another mother coming around when I was 11, so, aside from the belt or the paddle, I didn’t have anyone physical that kept me company. Non physically, I had Doctor Who and his travelling companions, Spock and his people who were with him, my dog, Pink Floyd, Alan Parsons etc etc etc (if you looked at this place almost any other time you can hear me frump about that without end, I suppose). My point to that irritating reminder is that I always wanted someone super close like that, someone who I could escape from a mental hospital and live my life with in hiding type of closeness person. But I didn’t and I get it with this movie, so there! Take that loneliness! Up yours!
This movie does not appear to have a lot of production money going for it so – independent YAY – which might be a put out for some folks but, but I have to give it up to the writer / director Rona Mark or the actresses Angela Berliner and Jordana Berliner who developed these two characters. I mean, either the sisters or the director experienced something horrible when they were kids, or they knew someone who had it really, really bad or read some awful case studies, but these two twins are fucked up. The movie itself isn’t a huge production wonderful job, shot with local theater troupe actors and an expensive HD camera, but (be warned) it does have a couple of oh gross moments, a very interesting concept, a fun chase through the woods and then, to me, there’s just the idea of these two people.
Because I like to stick pictures in here to give myself and the gentle reader a break from my nonsense AND because I can’t find any real pics of this movie, here’s a strange girl for you:
Only one or two people in the world probably remember the ONE time I had a shitty idea that I would try and cover some short movies out here; I did one and then failed. If you’re interested, that still above is from a short called Goat Witch and it was pretty good in my crappy opinion. And it’s HD! Anyway –
Early on we meet our two lovely ladies as they sit in a room in the hospital ward, staring at the floor… eventually they stand up in complete and blank synchronicity. They speak to no one except themselves and when confronted in any way, they stare only at the ground and don’t talk. They walk in the exact same steps down the street or the hall or up the stairs and even eventually share the same sex partner, because it’s only fair if they share as one person, which I suppose is natural but, like I said, I never had that option. That actually sounds kind of gross to me but what do I know? I’ve never been in some sort of fancy orgy with multiple people. What am I, a Frenchman? I am not. I also don’t perfume myself or ogle chicks or really even talk to strangers for that matter. I had a bunch (maybe?) of girlfriends back in the 90s but that really wasn’t because I was trying anything funny, I really just wanted to hang with my friend and drink beer. And then he moved to goddamfuckingtexas and left me alone here that fuckingsonofabitch. Don’t worry though — we’re still really good friends and I would do anything for him. Maybe he’ll do a podcast with me some time. Surely we’ll do another one, right? You’ve been warned!.
Christ, where was I?
There’s no real back story as to how they got so messed up, but you get an idea at one point where, sitting in front of a guidance counselor, clammed up, one of ’em rebels and chews a piece of gum: fucked up shit, right? This sets off a huge sister-fight-choking session, after which, sometime later, the other one of ’em is dressed in a man’s clothes, wearing a fake moustache and spanking the offender with a paddle, screaming “THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU CHEW GUM!!!” Or another time, they are trying on lipstick in the drug store, enjoying themselves, when a female clerk comes up to them and asks them if they like that color, they stop smiling, drop their eyes and heads and stare morosely at the floor. Come to think of it, that gum part sounds about like my childhood. Really.
That strange girl is from a movie called Mark of the Witch witch is the artsy fucking fartsy movie about the devil that you never need to see.
So the long story short in this not short post is this: long ago they were penned up, found by social services living like animals in a closet of (presumably) their parent’s house, filthy, feral and speaking their own language. They have lived in the ward for sixteen years or so when their case is taken on by a new doctor. She can’t get them to talk so she suggests splitting them up, to which they hand her a note in little-girl flowery writing that “this is not preferred”. So… for sure and like we would all do -that night they escape and murder her. Soon enough as the crow flies, they are living as borders in a run down house on a run down street in run down urban Pittsburgh. They steal the old lady-renter’s money, steal her car when they want to run errands and get abused by the local female toughs who call them “Freaks” (and such, such and such, etc etc etc ad infinitum excelsior and thank your mother for the chickens).
I hear the voices from the gallery to round this thing up – their work covered break time on the shitter is over and things have gone too long and too far. This movie makes use of trepanning and – yep – poop-de-doop, the letters from Paul to the Galatians, the ghost of Terry Bradshaw, (one of my closest friends) The Bone Doctor’s wedding video, the Franco Russian War and my dear blog friend Wednesday’s Child who is running under the name Seven Doors of Cinema (gods of the east and west bless us for her return). If anyone is actually paying attention here, some of the things in that last sentence are true and some aren’t but that shouldn’t be any reason to skip this – if you can get your skull drilling hands on it.
FILED UNDER: THEY ALMOST MADE IT TO THE HAPPY FINISH
Because I care – this last strange girl is from a movie called Apocalypse and the Beauty Queen which is one of the worst pieces of film I’ve ever seen: