Michelle Ehlen, if I was wearing a hat I would take it off to you. In fact I feel so strongly I shall don a hat for the sole purpose of taking if off to you. I logged on to imdb to see where the creator of Butch Jamie has been all of my film-watching life and boy have she been busy; writer, director, musician, producer, editor, casting assistant, art department, cinematographer, admit it, you worked for catering too.
Michelle is, obviously, obsessed with film and is teaching herself ho to be the best film-maker she can be by getting experience in every aspect of the creative process. It shows in her latest film, Butch Jamie.
This is an utterly charming, gentle film about being yourself. Michelle Ehlen takes this cheesy cliche and turns it into a delicate souffle of a film. The whole film centres around her and she strolls through the piece, at once witty and self-depreciating, then sensitive and tender.
She plays Jamie, a butch lesbian actress who can’t get a job when she femme’s up so, persuaded by her pal, goes to an audition as herself. She gets the part – the male part.
Meanwhile, her flatmate, Lola, has a cat. Not just any cat but Howard, a cat that nails every audition he goes on and gets every part. Sick of being in Howard’s shadow, Jamie decides to take the male part and show that she can be just as successful.
It’s a nice play on gender and identity; Jamie only gets a part when she auditions as herself, only to have to pretend not to be herself. It’s only while, literally, putting on the face of ‘male Jamie’ (right) that ‘female Jamie’ noticed how she could be “less of an asshole”; she could be more patient with Lola and even Howard. Little does she know how much that will change things.
Butch Jamie is one for your collection. Don’t let it pass you by.
Butch Jamie on imdb
Butch Jamie from Peccadillo Pictures
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