On My Way: Twentysomething Women in Hollywood

31 Mar

Greta Gerwig, Rhys Ifans, and Ben Stiller waste time in Greenberg.

A piece written by Irin Carmon on Jezebel asks whether the gender gap in film will be defeated by a new crop of twentysomething women.  In Noah Baumbach’s latest film, Greenberg, a 26-year-old actress named Greta Gerwig steps up to plate for my fellow female actresses and trumps Ben Stiller. Gerwig plays Florence Marr (which is a name that sounds kind of blah on its own) a lost soul of sorts, a young woman with a liberal arts education working a thankless job as a personal assistant. Florence, with her awkward gait and medical-looking bra, is the face of a befuddled young woman just trying to make it through the day.

As A.O. Scott put it, Gerwig’s Florence embodies “the particular confusions – emotional, professional, expressive – facing young, rootless women in 21st century America.”

Hmmm….young rootless women. I suppose I’m a rootless young woman. I am living in a bit of a limbo, between major cities, hoping to get any thankless job and labor my way toward future happiness. Are twentysomething women truly confused? I’ve certainly been confused before, about relationships, the point of a liberal arts education, how to properly file taxes. I think the question one must ask is whether it’s a bad thing to be confused. Confusion should be a part of youth, and your twenties are  a decade of self-discovery, worry, and general discontent. People in their twenties are still hopeful that they’ll be millionaires and movie stars.

Will the women of my generation overcome their suspected neuroses and make a move on Hollywood? I suspect that the death of the A-List could leave a gap for young, talented actors and writers. Why can’t a good portion of them be women? Take a look at the trailer for Tiny Furniture, the latest film by 23-year-old Lena Dunham. Dunham is well on her way to major indie film fandom, and I’m a little bit jealous. With the growing success of Gerwig and Dunham, I feel it may be time for me to make that transition to Hollywood as soon as possible. The only good thing about where I am now is the daily dose of disappointment that keeps me somewhat motivated. Well, that and the near-gurantee that I won’t get lung cancer from the air here.

Twentysomething female actresses, writers, and filmmakers – get on your grind.

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