When people at a young age create and execute something so effective and in such a great capacity, I find it so inspiring.
This week, I had the wonderful opportunity of attending the New York premiere of Lena Dunham's new film, Tiny Furniture.
With subtle honesty, the film provided an extremely sharp and qitty glimpse into main character Aura's (Lena Dunham) painfully confusing three weeks after graduating college.
Extremely quirky, Aura struggles with thoughts about her future (which to her, is unknown)- and acknowledging that a chapter of her life has ended. So, feeling antagonized by her quirky mother and sister, she ends up in a dreamlike sort of panic, seeking solace in interesting ways: Reconnecting with her long lost crazy friend Charlotte (quite brilliantly played by Jemima Kirke), inviting acquaintance and You-Tube phenomenon Jed to crash at her home while her family is away, and getting a job as a hostess at a restaurant around the block from her home-- and pursuing the chef there. This spurs a whole series of situations which, without revealing too many details (you'll have to see yourself!), force Aura to question a lot about who she is and who it is she would like to become.
For me, Tiny Furnture all comes back to the idea of family-- particularly, its unavoidable and sometimes painful ebbs and flows. While Aura is labeled as different by her mother and sister, and they bicker and fight (and with a wooden spoon!), one can't help but see the familiar distinct love and acceptance in the eyes of all.
The film's honesty could be a result of its autobiographical nature: for Aura's artist mother and seventeen year old sister were in fact played by Lena's own artist mother and seventeen year old sister, and Lena's TriBeCa home was used as Aura's home as well.
Lena wants and hopes that you know this while watching Tiny Furniture.
That, to me, was perhaps the coolest part. It added a dimension the film-- and to Aura's (and the general idea) post-college panic. For, as a viewer, you began to question what was fact, what was fiction, what really happened, and what did not.
Many say that art comes from pain, but in this case, art came from a definite comfort. I watched as Lena and her family re-visited difficult conversations and fights in a comfortable place. Ultimately this served in their favor, and appeared contagious to the supporting cast members- for it clearly nurtured all into delivering truly delightful and quite brilliant performances.
Lena is only twenty-four years old.
The film, with the support of IFC, opened in select theatres on Friday, November 12th.