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Smithereens

Smithereens

Smithereens

1982 / 89min / 35mm

DIRECTOR: SUSAN SEIDELMAN

CAST: SUSAN BERMAN, BRAD RIJN, RICHARD HELL

"I just wanna be in a swimming pool, eating tacos and signing autographs--that's all.” Wren wants to be famous. At least she wants her personhood recognized. She goes around the Lower East Side in torn fishnets and a plastic houndstooth miniskirt, jumping turnstiles and wheat-pasting up her own “missing” posters. The ransom-note letters across her face ask, WHO IS THIS? Susan Berman plays her like the pissed-off older sister of Molly Ringwald, and Smithereens has the feel of a fallen John Hughes movie: Beefaroni, Pac Man, and youthful angst in a hustler’s world. Seidelman’s downtown feels at once stylized and (thanks to the 16mm cinematography) documentary-real; the ubiquitous presence of prostitutes lends an ominous undertone to Wren’s desperation to keep a toehold in Manhattan. With Richard Hell, Cookie Mueller, and a score by The Feelies.

Smithereens is screening as part of 'Metrograph A to Z', a collection of films we think everybody should see.