Clara’s Ghost (Homebrewed #2)
Skype with director to follow screening.
Clara and her family of ego-maniacal actors convene in their Connecticut home for a weekend of heavy drinking and spotlight stealing, pushing Clara further into her own mind. She watches with horror as her twenty-something daughters and husband upend the pristine kitchen she spent hours perfecting. She then watches in horror as an ashen woman in Victorian dress taps upon her kitchen window. Bridey Elliott, daughter of cult comic Chris Elliott (Cabin Boy, Get a Life) and granddaughter of Bob Elliott (Bob & Ray), continues the offbeat comic legacy, expressing a supernatural understanding of the dark recesses just beyond the laugh. Starring Elliott’s real life family, Clara’s Ghost is an eerie, funny, honest look at what it means to be a mother.
“Though it’s her first feature, Bridey is clearly a studied filmmaker....Her camera dances with its subjects. She’s not afraid to get so close to her characters that you can see into their souls.” (Jessica Baxter, Hammer to Nail)
“It’s impressive just how fully-formed Bridey is as a filmmaker (her Sundance short “Affections” debuted at the festival in 2016) and how in command of the off-kilter tone she is (the apple hasn’t fallen far from the Elliott tree)....There’s something both scathing and sad about Clara’s Ghost, and its earnest consideration of its fraying titular character underneath all the laughs and madness. This is a film that’s wantonly absurd and even silly, and yet, bubbling underneath it all, Clara’s Ghost never takes its eyes off its protagonist or our empathy for her even when she is pushed to the edge of the frame both literally and figuratively….Niedert Elliott’s performance is haunting, perfectly capturing that ambiguous space between comedy and drama that gives the movie its edge. The toxicity of family is a limitless goldmine for eager therapists or autobiographical dramaturgists digging for story, but family dysfunction has perhaps never been as amusingly self-skewering as it is in Clara’s Ghost. (Rodrigo Perez, The Playlist)
Special thanks to the National Endowment for the Arts.