6.5/10
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Personal Velocity (2002)

Personal Velocity: Three Portraits (original title)
Trailer
2:15 | Trailer
Three women's escapes from their afflicted lives. Each struggles to flee from the men who confine their personal freedom.

Director:

Rebecca Miller

Writers:

Rebecca Miller (book), Rebecca Miller
6 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kyra Sedgwick ... Delia Shunt
Parker Posey ... Greta Herskowitz
Fairuza Balk ... Paula
John Ventimiglia ... Narrator (voice)
Ron Leibman ... Avram Herskowitz
Wallace Shawn ... Mr. Gelb
David Warshofsky ... Kurt Wurtzle
Leo Fitzpatrick ... Mylert
Tim Guinee ... Lee
Patti D'Arbanville ... Celia
Ben Shenkman ... Max
Joel de la Fuente ... Thavi Matola (as Joel De La Fuente)
Marceline Hugot ... Pam
Brian Tarantina ... Pete Shunt
Seth Gilliam ... Vincent
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Storyline

A tale of three women who have reached a turning point in their lives. Delia is a spirited, working-class woman from a small town in New York who leaves her abusive husband and sets out on a journey to reclaim the power she has lost. Greta is a sharp, spunky editor who is rotten with ambition. To spite the hated infidel ways of her father, she has settled into a complacent relationship and is struggling (not too hard) with issues of fidelity to her kind but unexciting husband. Finally Paula, who ran away from home and got pregnant, is now in a relationship she doesn't want. She's a troubled young woman who takes off on a journey with a hitchhiker after a strange, fateful encounter on a New York street. Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for brief violence, some strong sexuality and language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 December 2002 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Enter Fleeing See more »

Filming Locations:

Ellenville, New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$125,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$29,943, 24 November 2002

Gross USA:

$811,299

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$890,502
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Paula: I used to write. Then I used to paint. I think I'm going to be one of those people with a lot of potential who never really takes off.
Norwegian Man Who Dies with Paula: Those are always the best kind of people
See more »

Crazy Credits

To my mother See more »

Connections

Referenced in Film Geek (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Intense and redeeming enough to overcome the awkward fliming and editing
25 August 2013 | by secondtakeSee all my reviews

Personal Velocity (2002)

Literally three short movies that have a similar sense of crisis for the leading woman, but which set up mostly contrasts and comparisons. It's dramatic, interesting, sometimes difficult emotional stuff. The intentions are superb, and the acting focused and believable. In all, as a low-budget indie production, this has seriousness and depth.

It also is awkward enough in its filming to keep it from quite taking off, or letting you get fully absorbed. At first the very simple (and often imperfect) camera-work seems like smart stylizing, but then it's clear it's also an issue of making do with limitations. There are even moments that shift to a series of still frames in sequence, which feels like artistic invention until you realize it's not really contributing to the larger feeling of things.

This isn't quite a nitpick, but it does counterbalance the rawness of the acting, rather than enhance it.

The three stories are similar in the sense the woman are forced to survive in relationships, and in worlds, that are often hostile and confusing. And what's great is how they all do, in fact survive. As bad, or as uncertain, as their lives get, there is finally that pulling up by the bootstraps and realizing that better things are possible.

You'll hardly think this is the case in the first of the three stories, as the leading woman is portrayed as very strong and yet brutally weaker than her crazed husband. This shift is so shocking it might make some viewers quit the movie. But there is redemption even in this story. And in the second story, which is partly about greed and ambition, the tone changes dramatically, moving from a very poor to a very rich situation. The third story crosses other lines and solidifies the larger intention of the movie as a set of comparable, if unrelated, scenarios.

It's good stuff, and you want mostly to see the director (and screenwriter) Rebecca Miller (who also did "Regarding Henry") continue to make really interesting movies.


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