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'The M Word' broaches universal subject about 'the change of life'

The M Word

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"The M Word" is a film about a TV station with falling ratings, opening in San Francisco May 2. The title of the film by indie director Henry Jaglom encompasses ‘the change’ the TV station is going through. Mark Riley (Gregory Harrison) does a show on the station called ‘Extreme Sports’, and Moxie (Tanna Frederick) stars in a popular children’s program that borders on the bizarre. In a surprise visit from the parent company in New York, Charlie Moon, (Michael Imperioli) arrives to cut costs.

Tanna Frederik and Michael Imperioli in 'The M Word'
Photo courtesy of 'Larsen Associates', used with permission.

'Everything has a shelf life', including entertainment shows and fertility. The beginning of the film features three middle-aged women talking about how they feel going through another change, 'the change of life', filmed by Moxie. They are her aunts (played by Mary Crosby and Eliza Roberts) and her mother (Frances Fisher).

The script is excellent along with acting by the ensemble cast, which includes Corey Feldman as Moxie's boyfriend. Ironically, to save the TV station Moxie presents a short film about her proposed documentary on menopause at a manager's meeting. The subject is difficult for the male managers who are uncomfortable with the subject. Moxie enlists Charlie Moon to finance her doc, a subject that is 'hush- hush and 'universal'.

Candid close-ups of women talking about the changes they are going through are scripted contrapuntally to Moxie's budding romance with Charlie Moon. Some of the remarks are comic by these women such as “The only reason Duncan died in Macbeth was because Lady Macbeth was going through menopause”. The message of "The M Word" is potent, and the construction of this film does it justice.

The comedy is playing at The Roxie May 2 -9.