The Girl in the Book
|The Girl in the Book|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Marya Cohn|
|Written by||Marya Cohn|
|Edited by||Jessica Brunetto|
The Girl in the Book is a 2015 American drama film written and directed by Marya Cohn in her directorial debut. The film stars Emily VanCamp, Michael Nyqvist, David Call, Michael Cristofer, Talia Balsam and Ana Mulvoy-Ten. It had its world premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival on June 13, 2015. The film was released in a limited release and through video on demand on December 11, 2015, by Myriad Pictures, and Freestyle Releasing. The Girl in the Book garnered a positive reception from critics who praised VanCamp's performance and Cohn's direction of her own script.
Alice Harvey, a 28-year-old assistant book editor and aspiring writer, is tasked with handling the re-release of Milan Daneker's book Waking Eyes. Alice, the daughter of two successful, but neglectful, agents first met Milan as a teenager at one of her parents' parties. As she is forced to interact with him again she repeatedly flashes back to their interactions when she was a child when he forged a relationship with her under the guise of reading her work. When he later incorporated both her writing and intimate moments from their sexual relationship into his book she told her mother what had happened. Both her parents confronted Milan and chose to believe that she had an over-active imagination and a crush on Milan after Milan denied anything ever happened.
In the present, Alice finds herself feeling jarred and out of control as Milan keeps inserting himself in her life. At her birthday party she meets Emmett, a community organizer, and the two begin dating. However, when her best friend's baby sitter makes an off-handed comment about how Waking Eyes doesn't interest him, she has sex with him and is quickly caught by her best friend Sadie. Emmett also finds out and dumps Alice. In order to convince Emmett to give their relationship another shot, Alice creates a blog listing 100 reasons why Emmett should take her back. In the meantime, she confronts Milan about what he did though he continues to insist that the relationship was what she wanted. She later skips Milan's book re-launch party to talk to Emmett who finally agrees to take her back. Afterwards, he figures out that she is "the girl in the book" and Alice tells him that she isn't any more. Newly inspired she begins to write again for the first time since Milan betrayed her and titles her work, The Girl in the Book.
In June 2013, it was announced Emily VanCamp, and Michael Nyqvist had joined the cast of the film, with Marya Cohn making her directorial debut. Production on the film began in Mid-June of that same year, in New York City. It was filmed during a five-week gap VanCamp had between seasons on Revenge.
A Kickstarter campaign was set up to raise money for post-production, the goal was set at $65,000, the goal was met raising a total of $65,342. Rewards for donating included a behind-the scenes blog, and a coffee table book.
The film had its world premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival on June 13, 2015. In October 2015, it was announced Myriad Pictures, and Freestyle Releasing acquired U.S distribution rights to the film. The film was released in a limited release and through video on demand on December 11, 2015.
The Girl in the Book received positive reviews from critics. It holds a 91% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 11 reviews, with an average rating of 7.4 out of 10. On Metacritic, which uses an average of critics' reviews, the film holds a 69 out of a 100 based on 8 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".
Despite finding minor complaints with the film's ending being too resolute, Sara Stewart of the New York Post called it "a smart and pointed look at abuses of power and roles women too often play in the literary world." Andy Webster of The New York Times gave praise to both Mulvoy-Ten and VanCamp for their portrayal of Alice, calling the latter's performance of the adult version "a rounded, winning blend of self-doubt and fitful initiative." Stewart also found Cohn's handling of the film's final act too neat but was optimistic about her potential as a filmmaker, concluding that, "Given her confident hand behind the camera and gift for rich female characters, you hope to see more portraits from her in the future." Stephanie Merry of The Washington Post was also positive towards VanCamp's performance as being "exceptional, eliciting our sympathy even when the character is making maddeningly self-destructive decisions." Merry called Cohn's handling of the story's twists and dialogue "a quietly devastating portrait of innocence lost too soon and adulthood delayed too long." In a more negative review, Michael Rechtshaffen of the Los Angeles Times found Cohn's semi-autobiographical tale "dramatically ponderous" with its standard emotional storyline beats and characters that are just believable enough, concluding that "As a screen proposition, The Girl in the Book is ultimately unable to extricate itself from those written confines."
- "The Girl in The Book". LaFilmFest.com. Retrieved December 12, 2015.
- Rubin, Sam (December 8, 2015). "Emily Van Camp Talks New Movie The Girl In The Book". KTLA.com. Retrieved December 11, 2015.
- Siegel, Tatiana (June 13, 2013). "Emily VanCamp to Star in Indie 'The Girl in the Book'". The Hollywood Reporter. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved December 12, 2015.
- Siegel, Tatiana (June 13, 2013). "Emily VanCamp to Star in 'The Girl in the Book' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved August 26, 2013.
- Berger, Laura. "LAFF 2015 Women Directors: Meet Marya Cohn - 'The Girl in the Book'". Indiewire. Retrieved November 30, 2015.
- "The Girl in the Book: Feature Film by Marya Cohn". Kickstarter. June 17, 2013. Retrieved August 26, 2013.
- "The Girl in The Book". LaFilmFest.com. Retrieved December 12, 2015.
- McNary, Dave. "Emily VanCamp's 'Girl in the Book' Bought by Myriad for U.S". Variety. Penske Media Corporation. Retrieved November 30, 2015.
- Rubin, Sam (December 8, 2015). "Emily Van Camp Talks New Movie The Girl In The Book". KTLA.com. Retrieved December 12, 2015.
- "The Girl in The Book". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved December 12, 2015.
- "The Girl in The Book". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved December 12, 2015.
- Stewart, Sara (December 10, 2015). "'Girl in the Book' shows awful abuse of power in the literary world". New York Post. News Corp. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
- Webster, Andy (December 10, 2015). "Review: In 'The Girl in the Book,' a Young Editor Is Unsettled by Her Past With a Novelist". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
- Merry, Stephanie (December 10, 2015). "Movie review: Arrested development gets serious in 'The Girl in the Book'". The Washington Post. Nash Holdings LLC. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
- Rechtshaffen, Michael (December 10, 2015). "Review: 'The Girl in the Book' anything but a page-turner". Los Angeles Times. Tronc. Retrieved November 2, 2017.