ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Mistress America (2015)

Updated on September 11, 2015



A Review by: Jeff Turner

Dir: Noah Baumbach

Written by: Greta Gerwig, Noah Baumbach

Produced by: Noah Baumbach, Eli Bush, Oscar Boyson, Rodrigo Teixeira, Lila Yacoub.

Starring: Lola Kirke, Greta Gerwig.


I loved FRANCES HA, the last collaboration between Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig. It was film that was funny, and a film that abandoned the three act structure in a smart way. Gerwig and Baumbach's latest film, MISTRESS AMERICA; is more committed to formula than FRANCES HA, but is no less funny or whip-smart.

Tracy (Lola Kirke) just started college in New York. She is trying to get into an exclusive writer's club, the Mobius, but is continually rejected. Her mother wants her to go meet Brooke (Gerwig), whose dad she is planning to marry. Tracy and Brooke hit it off almost instantly. Tracy begins to write a short story about Brooke shortly after first meeting her, using her as a tool to get into one of the Mobius. Aspects of this dynamic are formulaic, but the film treats both of its characters with respect, and the inevitable payoff, a fight they have after they go to Connecticut, offers some of the best absurdist comedy I've seen this year.

One thing I noticed about this movie that I dug was that Gerwig and Kirke both have normal body types. This offers a sense of authenticity that the film might not have been able to generate otherwise. It seems like nothing, but it turned into something that worked in the film's favor. One thing I also liked is the use of a narration to demonstrate Tracy's prose. We see how she interprets these people in her life into her story, and its a great way to develop her character.

The script is fantastic as well, but it wouldn't work without the chemistry that Kirke and Gerwig have with each other. This script requires snappy delivery, and this cast has it in spades. The script plays like a really fun night you just had with a really cool person you know. It has a spark to it, a sense of realism almost as though, not unlike Tracy, Baumbach took it from his own life.

MISTRESS AMERICA is a film where the comedy comes from the characters and their experiences. The comic timing is consistent and the acting is solid. It is a formulaic film, but it commits to this formula in fun and interesting ways. While it abides by formula, it is not a stupid film; creating two characters that live and breathe, two characters of different ages who are both struggling for identity. It is a minor addition to Baumbach's filmography, but even minor Baumbach is still something special.

Rating: ***1/2

The Trailer


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)