Fault in Our Stars star Shailene Woodley and Doom Generation Director Gregg Araki make for a really bizarre mix. Araki’s films – from Doom to Mysterious Skin to the subtle masterpiece Totally F***ed Up – feature carnal sexuality and unremitting gore. Woodley’s, by contrast, include a whole of “journaling” and Laura Bush haircuts. So it’s (potentially/theoretically) exciting to see Woodley join Araki for his latest directorial venture, White Bird in a Blizzard, the story of a seventeen-year-old girl (Woodley) who wakes up one day to find that her mother (Eva Green) has mysteriously disappeared. Woodley cries, then has a lot of sex, then goes outside in a snowstorm without a proper hat on. Makes sense to me.
The film, it appears, reflects some of Araki’s favorite themes, among them, the dark side of suburban culture (snooze), adolescent sexuality (always creepy), meat. Some people love Araki (I am not one of them), but early reviews have come out strong, the trailer is beautiful, and the storyline appears to showcase an actual – story. Doom Generation featured a whole lot of art school, highbrow shocks, so it’s nice to see Araki mature into a director with something (potentially/theoretically) substantial to say. Even Woodley, whose Twitter profile literally includes the following words: “Gaia. Aloha. Rewilding. Sacralizing the Feminine. Gratitude,” and who once claimed that feminism “discriminates” against men, appears to have grown up here.
White Bird in a Blizzard further includes Christopher Meloni with a mustache, Shiloh Fernandez with an earring, and Angela F***in Basset. I’m almost excited to have it open in theaters October 24th.