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Wild Bitch (2022)

2022 SXSW FILM FESTIVAL REVIEW!


Barb Cramper (Rebekka Johnson) has just had an encounter with a coyote, and she’s ready to tell the world her story. However, as she meets with reporter Melanie Fischer (Kate Nash), more of her twisted existence comes to light–and Melanie and Barb will be bound together forever as a result. Barb is a closeted Wild Bitch, and she’s here to rock the boat.


With a title like Wild Bitch, viewers know they are in for a crazy ride, and that’s just what the world gets. From crazy stories about coyotes making themselves at home, to verbally abusive husbands, to the ideas behind death and what it means for the grand scheme of the food chain, Wild Bitch touches on a number of unique topics that are sure to pique the interest of anyone willing to watch. In just twelve short minutes Johnson and Nash, who also wrote and directed the film, fill the production with tons of riveting content–and they do a wonderful job of manipulating that content to appeal to viewers.


The most effective way in which the duo appeals to viewers is through their acting, as they are quirky and immensely talented. Johnson in particular has a way about her which allows Barb’s strange personality to jump off the screen and propel Wild Bitch forward. Her comedic prowess is a force to be reckoned with, as each and every word, every movement, and her interactions with others are nearly perfect. There are moments of subtlety, outright comedy, and dark humor that come from Johnson, and through everything, she is the reason that Wild Bitch is as fun as it is. Opposite Johnson is Nash, who possesses a level of comedy herself–but I’m not sure that’s her role in the film. While she’s certainly funny on her own, it seems that her role is to help facilitate the comedy presented by Johnson. She helps to bring out the best in Johnson, and the jokes become even funnier as a result of what Nash brings to the table.


There’s a darkness that transcends the entirety of Wild Bitch, and it cuts through the comedy. It’s not necessarily meant to balance out the comedy, but it seems that it's more used to express to the world that even in the beauty of life–hardship and struggle still exist. There is a nice juxtaposition that exists between the light and dark of Wild Bitch, and it delights viewers from beginning to end.


The cinematography is a key component in the success of Wild Bitch, and without it the juxtaposition of light and dark, as well as Johnson and Nash’s comedy would be lost, unable to appropriately make their way to viewers. Cinematographer Morgana McKenzie captures every second of the film with precision. With unique angles, perfectly-timed closeups, and a series of shots that capture the essence of Wild Bitch seamlessly, McKenzie brings out the best in this film, and her work does not go unnoticed.


These two women–Johnson and Nash–are so incredibly talented. They convey emotion with great poise, they feed off of one another, and they present the world with unique and enthralling comedy from beginning to end. Wild Bitch showcases their talents (not just regarding their acting, but their writing and directing abilities as well), but it also expresses the talent of McKenzie and her crew. The entirety of Wild Bitch, even its theme song, appeals to viewers in a very twisted and fun way–and I believe that the film will make waves at this year’s South by Southwest Film Festival.


Written & Directed by Rebekka Johnson & Kate Nash.


Starring Rebekka Johnson, Kate Nash, Ptolemy Slocum, David Wilkins, & Christopher Nicholas Smith.


⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐½/10


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