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GO FISH

USA, 1993 (MIFF 1994)

Director: Rose Troche

No fishing expedition, this first feature is an insider view of lesbian life in the nineties by a writer and filmmaker team who are as good at angst as they are at irony. Go Fish has already been dubbed a "dyke Slacker" pic for its low-budget, black and white chronicling of daily hopes, fears, and banalities. At once gritty and lyrical, it tracks an inter-linked cast of characters (most of them played by nonprofessionals) through a fanciful girl-meets-girl saga.

Max is looking for love. Her roommate, Kia, already has it in the person Evy, who lives at home with her mom, still trying to shake off her ex-husband. Then there's Ely, Kia's ex-student and seemingly available. Ely shares a place with Daria, the quintessential dyke about town, constantly in and out of women's beds and hearts. Kia thinks Max would like Ely; Daria thinks Ely should like Max. Everyone schemes. We're treated to a date, a dinner party, pride, honour, friendship, laundry, nail clipping - and, of course sex.

There's an innocence about the characters that's usually missing in Lesbian Chic coverage: these women look more like the twentysome-thing figures in underground video or Alison Bechdel's cult comic, "Dykes to Watch Out For". Go Fish begins just about where coming out films used to end: all the women are dykes, and sex is on everybody's mind. Since it's the lesbian universe, so is romance. Seriocomic and navigated by a wistful narrator, an unlikely chorus of elders, and an assured cinematic ability to confer grace upon lesbian-identity escapades Go Fish is the film to watch out for.
- B. Ruby Rich, Sundance Film Festival

See also...

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