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Category:    Home > Reviews > Drama > Urban > States Of Control (Drama)

States Of Control


Picture: C†††† Sound: C+†††† Extras: C+†††† Film: B



Lisa (Jennifer van Dyck) is an artist on the climb who feels more trapped than anything else.She is unhappy with her life, though she has a good man in her life.She is supporting herself, but just feels too gridded in routine and the usual, typical New York City life that she starts to feel the need for something more and she will push various limits in Zack Winestineís States Of Control.This 1997/98 work is a decent film, but whether it is a truly feminist film is another story.


This is not to say a woman trying to find empowerment is male or female, but her sudden interest in XXX tapes, sudden bursts of physical violence, isolationism, depravation, confrontation and questioning all the sudden of her very existence is something either gender can relate to.Writer/producer/director Winestine has at least some understanding of the human condition and does not try to compensate for gender, which is why this film works as often as it does.There may be some missed opportunities in places, but he actually achieves a kind of unisex result that does not seem to have occurred to most filmmakers mired in redundant film theory classes and other pretensions.


The supporting acting by semi-known indie actors like John Cunningham, Stephen Bogardus, and Ellen Greene is solid, along with the rest of the cast.Part of the reason is because they have a script that gives them something to do.This is a mature, intelligent film like the more recent French entry The Pornographer that is made for adults with the idea that they are intelligent, well read, mature and have a life.Most Hollywood product of late, including some awful boutique independent works, treats the audience like they are infantile and idiotic in the opposite direction.Lisa becomes an existential hero of sorts and States Of Control is worth going out of the way to see.


The letterboxed 1.85 X 1 image lacks depth and has some color limits, but was shot on film and has its moments thanks to the naturalistic approach taken by cinematographer Susan Starr.It could be argued that she is supplying some female persona to van Dyck by the way she captures her on film.The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo is not bad for a low budget production, though it has no surrounds and was an analog Ultra Stereo release.This is a system that has more distortion that even Dolby analog A-type, so when these films show up on DVD, they often lack surrounds for possible technical reasons.Richard Terminiís score is also very good.Extras include stills, text filmmaker interview, text biographies, trailer, isolated audio-only song selections and the short film On Some Consequence Of A Passage By Guy Debord by director Winestine.Winestine is doing cinematography and camerawork again, but he should get the chance to helm another film.We canít wait.



-†† Nicholas Sheffo


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