Monday, May 15, 2006
Must Mee Movie: Somersault
The type of discovery that makes independent films essential is actress Abbie Cornish, lead of the must-see movie ‘Somersault’. Cornish is dynamic and utterly convincing as Heidi, a sixteen-year-old Australian girl who uses her sexuality to meet other boys and build relationships. Fleeing home after being caught with her mother’s boyfriend, Heidi heads to the ski town of Lake Jindabyne, hoping to reconnect with a past acquaintance. While there, she meets Joe (Sam Worthington), the son of a local farmer. Heidi and Joe first hook up at a local bar out of mutual physical attraction but something more develops from their liaison. They are both unsure about themselves but together they might find answers.
‘Somersault’ is filmmaker Cate Shortland’s first feature after directing four short films and she shows a skill at melodrama worthy of Fassbinder. Worthington is complex and believable as Joe, someone who is as confused as Heidi and desperate for a firmer sense of self. Still, any limelight that falls upon 'Somersault' should go to the impressive Cornish. As Abbie, a flawed teenage girl desperate to be loved and to love herself, Cornish deserves the attention reserved for Hollywood starlets.
Somersault is a winner of 13 Australian Film Institute Awards. It is currently playing art house theaters across America courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.