Movie Moment

The expiration of my 11-year commitment


Since its release in 2013, my favorite movie has stayed the same. I saw “The Great Gatsby” when it first came out and I never looked back. It stuck with me so much that I hadn't since found a movie that I held so closely to my heart. That was, until last week.

“Pieces of a Woman” follows the story of Martha, played by Vanessa Kirby, who endures a tragic home birth. After losing her child, the storyline is focused around her path to happiness amidst the grief and sorrow.

Child loss is, unfortunately, a highly common experience for women all around the world, though few movies make it the center focus. I have a heightened sense of love for filmmakers that make this choice. Movies are truly an art of entertainment, but crossing the threshold by including real-life scenarios can make some of the best movies.

Not only is the tale of her grieving process riveting, the filming and editing of this movie ties everything together. Color palettes play a tremendous role in the film industry. They can separate timelines in the story, play on emotions and set the tone. This movie took this all into consideration during the production.

The lack of scene editing resulted in one of the longest single-take shots in American films — surpassing the 17-minute scene in “Gravity.” The fluid one take shot cinematographer Benjamin Loeb created for this film is one of the most intense scenes I have seen. What was only 22 minutes in a movie felt like hours of real-time birth, creating a sense of unity between our lives and the character’s.

Writer of “Pieces of a Woman,” Kata Wéber, was undoubtedly crucial to the making of this film. Film writers are the heart of many films. With the topic at hand being emotionally raw from the perspective of a woman, it was only fitting for Wéber to be the writer.

With a well-written movie, the pivotal moment to excel lies in the execution of the actors and actresses. Kirby was personally nominated for 38 awards solely based on her performance in this film. Many times, I wonder if the movie would be better with a different cast list, but Kirby couldn’t be replaced in “Pieces of a Woman.” From exaggerated emotions and the lack thereof depending on the emotions circled around the scene, Kirby’s performance was respectfully worth all 38 nominations.

This film does not have the highest critic or viewer rating, but the excellence is still present. With a mixture of the storyline, editing and performances, I can confidently say I made the right choice by letting this movie find its place in my rankings at the top.