Mandy (Billie Piper) is a mess. A single mum to a young son, she’s constantly
conflicted about her ultra-competitive media career, clashing with her unhappy
parents, and attracted to the wrong men. She’s also smart and self-aware. Acutely
conscious of the demands placed on women to “have it all,” she is still weighed down
by crippling self-esteem issues. When she begins a new relationship with needy,
passive-aggressive Pete (Leo Bill), what could possibly go… right?
Billed as an “anti-rom-com”, this is the debut feature from acclaimed British actress
turned writer-director Piper. It’s a bold, brutally funny, and confrontational look at
modern feminism, the pressures to embody social ideals, accept one’s emotional
fragility and still grapple with one’s personal demons, particularly in light of the
#MeToo movement. Amid a terrific ensemble cast (David Thewlis, Lily James),
Piper’s heartfelt lead performance is unflinching in her lack of emotional and physical
vanity. A rare beast indeed.