Present imperfect | Movie Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Film » Movie Critic's Choice

Present imperfect

Frank V. Ross portrays a decaying marriage in Tiger Tail in Blue.

by

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

comment

Director Frank V. Ross (Audrey the Trainwreck) and Rebecca Spence play a suburban couple whose marriage is deteriorating due to financial hardship and opposite work schedules—she teaches high school during the day, and he works evenings at a restaurant. Ross's films, similar to those of his peers Joe Swanberg and Andrew Bujalski, are deceptively formal, notable for the way they upend notions of time and space while maintaining a palpable sense of realism. Tiger Tail pushes this aesthetic further by putting Spence in dual roles—she plays Ross's flirtatious coworker as well as his wife, a bold casting move that suggests how an idealized past often resembles an unsatisfactory present. This paradoxical sentiment, which the film expresses masterfully, makes for a somber meditation on sexual frustration and arrested development.

Support Independent Chicago Journalism: Join the Reader Revolution

We speak Chicago to Chicagoans, but we couldn’t do it without your help. Every dollar you give helps us continue to explore and report on the diverse happenings of our city. Our reporters scour Chicago in search of what’s new, what’s now, and what’s next. Stay connected to our city’s pulse by joining the Reader Revolution.

Are you in?

  Reader Revolutionary $35/month →  
  Rabble Rouser $25/month →  
  Reader Radical $15/month →  
  Reader Rebel  $5/month  → 

Not ready to commit? Send us what you can!

 One-time donation  → 

Add a comment