'I'm Your Woman' Review
You know, it’s no wonder really that you’re starting to get more films and shows from different perspectives of something we’ve all become so accustomed to, this is also true for mob/mafia/crime genre as well. A year before, an adaptation of ’The Kitchen’ tried this very thing on studio budget level, keyword being ’’tried’’ because later released I’m Your Woman really accomplishes much of what it’s going for instead of just faking the vibe on a soundstage. Written by the director Julia Hart and producer Jordan Horowitz, we begin to follow a housewife called Jean (Rachel Brosnahan) who needs to go hiding with her baby and Cal (Arinzé Kene), sort of a bodyguard, as Jean’s husband Eddie has seemingly pissed off some big mob bosses. Some of ’’Woman’s’’ aspirations look to be larger than the money behind it but it nevertheless manages to create a compelling journey in the world of crime.
As we certainly are familiar with seeing the man of the family go through business meetings, shoot-outs and swindle their way up the crime ladder, the strong premise of seeing what happens to the wife and their kid when the brown stuff hits the fan works for this film’s favour. You might even think about ’The Godfather’ where the wife literally gets the door closed in front of her. That said, I’m Your Woman isn’t strictly a remake of those classic films, it just wisely uses some of the visuals which are apparent notably when there is shooting or cars involved. Otherwise the premise gets us to safe houses (one sequence involving a neighbour lady and Jean is so tense) and sketchy backrooms, plus we are always centered on Brosnahan and Kene who are the heart of the movie and do a solid job acting.
Technically the film also looks and sounds great; something to highlight are Natalie O’Brien’s costume design which plays on Jean’s self-proclaimed social status at any given time and also Aska Matsumiya’s score which is one of the things that don’t reference 70s but instead is driven by swirling pianos and industrial influenced beats. These are some important factors to get shining through because some bigger stuff we end up seeing seems to be a victim of the budget. Production design is quite understated considering how much fake money is at stake in the movie, likely also being the reason for using more close-ups and midsized compositions. Some action scenes like the car chase towards the end also just look empty and very safe, as if the producers really cut corners on rentals and actors. Good thing is that most of the smaller stuff works well, even if the film could’ve used a star performance or a change of pace to push it further.
Smileys: Premise, costume design, score
Frowneys: Some issues with production design and story
You can probably skip arm days at the gym if you carry a baby around for a whole movie.