Personal Velocity | Chicago Reader

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Rebecca Miller's second feature shows her to be a careful but somewhat schematic scenarist; her shaky directorial skills are partly offset by her skill at eliciting convincing portrayals from actors. Adapted from three of Miller's own short stories, this uneven triptych features flawed female heroines whose woes are attributable to unstable or bland male partners and simple bad luck. In the opening sequence Kyra Sedgwick shines as a working-class mother on the run from a brutal husband, while in the concluding sequence Fairuza Balk does her valiant best with a character who's more prototype than flesh and blood—a pregnant young woman traumatized by a number of chance encounters that seem pilfered from a second-rate Kieslowski script. Miller appears most comfortable with the upper-middle-class milieu of the middle sequence, in which Parker Posey plays a neurotic editor who abandons her faithful but boring husband for a charismatic young novelist. 85 min.

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