Miu Miu “Women’s Tales” releases “(The [End) of History Illusion]” by Celia Rowlson-Hall – the second film of the year, making it No. 14th in its series. A panel talk followed
The Women’s Tales short film series has grown in number by two new films each year since it was started by Miuccia Prada five years ago. No. 14 in the series, and the series’ last for 2017, just premiered at the Venice International Film Festival – and, once again, a panel talk with film industry creatives was held afterwards.
The End of History Illusion gives off a La La Land-esque air, but not just because of the musical characters and the political innuendo – it’s also the combination of nostalgia and surrealism that more or less sums up the zeitgeist. And as dreamy as the set comes across, it appears perfectly tailored to the title of Miu Miu’s film series: Women’s Tales. The film was directed by dancer, choreographer, and filmmaker Celia Rowlson-Hall, who follows in the footsteps of filmmakers like Crystal Moselle, Naomi Kawase, Miranda July, and Chloë Sevigny.
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Sevigny directed Carmen, the first of the two Women’s Tales films for 2017, which premiered in February in New York. The film was also show over the last few weeks in Venice. Pointed humor plays a big role in Carmen, and The End of History Illusion also places a focus on exaggerated representation, but Rowlson-Hall concentrates it on the world of marketing. “I wanted to explore commercialism in the face of fear, creating a spectacle to distract and entertain, an escape from our present day reality,” said the director. Using the style of an infomercial, her protagonists present a bomb shelter that offers every possible luxury, from a pool to a croissant-baking ballerina. The dream becomes a nightmare, but the performers are well-dressed to the very end. “When I saw the Miu Miu collection, there was something about the textiles and colors that made me want to create characters which could come with this space,” explains Rowlson-Hall. Fabulous dresses, expressive images, imaginative storyline – that’s probably the best way to sum up the concept of Miu Miu’s Women’s Tales.
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Panel talks were held once again over two days following the premiere – the Miu Miu Women’s Tales Conversations. It was moderated for the third year in a row by Penny Martin, editor-in-chief of The Gentlewoman. Directors Chloë Sevigny and Celia Rowlson-Hall were the main speakers, both of whom spoke about how women can succeed in jumping from the screen to behind the scenes and then to the director’s chair – today, a job still predominantly performed by men. Talks with actresses Kate Bosworth and Zosia Mamet centered on the advantages for actresses of strengthening their say in a film’s production. Two additional panel talks included journalist and actress Tavi Gevinson as well as model and actress Laura Harrier – and three other women who are experts in the field of film and could enrich the event by sharing their expertise with the audience. After this event, it’s once again very clear what goal Miuccia Prada is after with her series Women’s Tales: to offer women working in the film industry a platform to show what they can do and to celebrate femininity.