Ingrid Goes West

Ingrid Goes West

(2017)

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Aubrey Plaza (Safety Not Guaranteed) leads this dark comedy as a mentally disturbed woman who chases a social media star (Elizabeth Olsen, Captain America: Civil War). Co-stars O'Shea Jackson Jr. (Straight Outta Compton) and Wyatt Russell (Everybody Wants Some).... More

Following the death of her mother and a series of self-inflicted setbacks, young Ingrid Thorburn (Plaza) escapes a humdrum existence by moving out West to befriend her Instagram obsession, LA socialite Taylor Sloane (Olsen). After a quick bond is forged between these unlikeliest of friends, the façade begins to crack in both women’s lives...Hide

Flicks Review

As a society we’re still grappling with the ways social media is transforming the world, from our kids growing up knowing that ‘likes’ on Facebook equal popularity, to the president of the United States threatening nuclear war on Twitter.... More

It’s slowly crept into our entertainment too, but outside of Black Mirror, there haven’t been many looks at how ‘soc med’ is changing us as people.

Enter Ingrid Goes West. In its opening minutes the titular character (played by Aubrey Plaza) is checked into a psychiatric institution as a direct result of her Instagram addiction. It’s clear that the problem is her, not the technology. But, as someone who is prone to obsession, it’s so easy to pick up her phone and get down to some serious stalking.

As soon as Ingrid is released she starts lingering on the Instagram feed of socialite Taylor Sloane (Elizabeth Olsen). It’s so enticing - perfect-seeming boyfriend, perfect-seeming meals… perfect life? It’s all too easy to pinpoint where she is geographically, and figure out how to infiltrate her life.

The film isn’t a serious sociological examination. It’s a comedy, but one with some depth to it, taking aim at the aspirational nature of online platforms. As Ingrid’s lies pile up things teeter between cringe humour and something darker. Director Matt Spicer never underplays her depth of emotion, as misguided as she may be.

Ingrid soon discovers that Taylor’s life is as complex as everybody’s, even (gasp) flawed in certain aspects. But that doesn’t stop her ingratiating herself further, only stymied by the entrance of Taylor’s brother Nicky, played with spectacular loathsomeness by Billy Magnussen.

He’s pure malice, but is he the villain of this story? Or is that Ingrid herself? Ingrid Goes West doesn’t offer any easy answers, and it’s much better for it.Hide


The Peoples' Reviews

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BY freshdude superstar

The most accurate and relevant commentary on contemporary social media use in cinematic form I have seen so far. Both comical and disturbing, "Ingrid Goes West" is a dark warning about narcissistic self loathing. Aubrey Plaza is transcendent and gives an impeccable performance, in this feature from first time director Matt Spicer.
It absolutely nails the Instagram generation, the image obsessed, selfie addicted, image manufacturing millennials- with wicked wit and humour ... and admittedly if... More you use social media, you more than likely will see some of yourself in it.Hide


The Press Reviews

  • Often sharply amusing, crisply assembled and features game, broad-brushstroke performances from leads Aubrey Plaza and Elizabeth Olsen. Full Review

  • A semi-ironic, yet still-empathetic “Single White Female” for the Facebook generation... Full Review

  • Plaza's tremendous performance shines, and the script thankfully is as interested in these characters as it is in commenting on social media culture. Full Review

  • Such a vivid and minute portrait of our boho-chic, mid-century modern, reclaimed wood, custom typography, shrub-swilling, microgreens-on-heirloom-quinoa moment that the characters can be outlines, and it doesn't really affect the ride. Full Review

  • This isn't a simple takedown of social media-obsessed Californians - that would be too easy. Instead, Spicer looks past the emojis and pulls out the depression, inauthenticity and loneliness that's behind the need for constant online affirmation. Full Review

  • Ingrid Goes West has fun with some social media tropes and Southern California tendencies, but it feels less like a satire than a cautionary tale, for both the envious and the envied. Full Review

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