Ingrid Goes West: Film Review
Cast: Aubrey Plaza, Elizabeth Olsen, O'Shea Jackson Jr, Wyatt Russell
Director: Matt Spicer
A satire on the social media loving generation and a dark drama as well, Ingrid Goes West is the cautionary yet all too familiar tale of Ingrid (Parks and Rec star Aubrey Plaza).
Obsessed with a woman she's never met other than through Instagram, Ingrid's institutionalised after pepper spraying the woman at her wedding because she never received an invite. Upon release and with the spectre of her mother's death licking away at her background, Ingrid forms a new obsession with Elizabeth Olsen's Taylor, an Insta-celebrity whose life appears perfect.
Ingratiating her way in, Ingrid becomes firm friends with Taylor after moving out west to be near her....
In many ways, Ingrid Goes West is a Single White Female for the Insta-generational millennial on the go.
For those opposed to social media, it's a satire on the reality behind the filters, and while it loses its bite later on (bar its last scene), the film's desire to showcase the vacuousness of Taylor's life with Ingrid's borderline depression is a strong step for the Hollywood game to take (particularly in this ongoing war of Influencers and strategies).
As the soulless and lost Ingrid, Plaza is perfect, both encapsulating he dizzying highs of the social recognition and the gnawing desperation of the ignorance; she pulls off this indie with veritable aplomb and makes Ingrid both a nuanced, empathetic and yet obscene human being as well.
A breezy Olsen makes Taylor both empty enough and appealing, and while Russell gets some good lines as her beleaguered husband, who wants the earlier version of his wife back before she was an internet celeb, Straight Outta Compton star O'Shea Jackson Jr brings subtle life to the neighbour who's got an attraction to Ingrid.
While Spicer makes the film quite dark at times, this BFF dramedy has some serious bite and commentary to the social media generation and the divides within. A warning perhaps to the vacuous generation and the phone-obsessed millennials, it may fall short in its final 20 minutes, but all in all, Ingrid Goes West deserves to get more than just a social media thumbs up.