Director: Michael Morris | Script: Screenwriter(s) | Cast: Andrea Riseborough (Leslie), Marc Maron (Sweeney), Owen Teague (James), Allison Janney (Nancy), Stephen Root (Dutch), Andre Royo (Royal) ea | Time to play: 119 minutes | Year: 2022
to leslie he may be primarily remembered for the short-lived controversy surrounding lead actress Andrea Riseborough’s Oscar nomination. Every year, one or more actresses are nominated for this type of film: small dramas, which are mainly based on acting. to leslie fits that list, with an impressive cast trying to cover up the flaws in Ryan Binaco’s script.
Binaco’s dialogues dance around the hot mash for a long time and therefore feel quite realistic. Characters aren’t always very good at expressing their feelings, such as alcoholic mother Leslie, her disillusioned son James, hotel manager Sweeney, and family friends Dutch and Nancy. Leslie’s dark past that looms over all of her lives is also not something you briefly explain to someone in a monologue.
It’s even stranger when this suddenly happens from time to time, precisely among people who know exactly what happened. It actually turns out to be very simple and little thought out: alcohol destroys more of what you love, nothing more. The opening gives the impression that a lot has happened: after a clearly old news story in which Leslie wins the lottery with little James by her side, a scene follows in which she is evicted from her home a decade later.
Then follows a tour of the people he’s already screwed up with, like his son and old friends Dutch and Nancy, whom he continues to screw up with his constant drinking. She until she finds herself homeless hanging around Sweeney’s motel and out of pity, he gives her a job as a cleaning lady.
Each time, reference is made to the fact that Leslie once won the lottery and that money was wasted on his drinking addiction within a few years. There’s a bit of a mystery to this, until eventually people are shouting all the details to each other. So it turns out that there has never been more interpretation than that very idea.
This contributes to the growing feeling that to leslie despite the low budget, it is primarily a Hollywood production, by a group of people who are tourists in West Texas, where the movie is set and filmed. A sentiment that is reinforced by the fact that none of the cast and crew appear to be from the region.
Andrea Riseborough has a very convincing Texan accent, but like Principal Morris, she hails from England. Marc Maron is very likeable as Sweeney, and his own experience with alcoholism (widely reported on his famous podcast) will have come in handy on set, but his accent ranges from thick to non-existent. The rest of the cast falls somewhere in between.
Missing due to inauthenticity and well thought out background. [i]to leslie[i] as a whole, the expressiveness necessary to convince as drama about the eventual overcoming (temporary?) of alcoholism. Stephen Root and Allison Janney do so in their supporting roles as the couple Dutch and Nancy, but calling them that by the writer is a silly joke that is intentionally inappropriate: Dutch was Ronald Reagan’s nickname and Nancy was his wife, and Reagan He was an actor who was long known for his bad cowboy roles.
However, Riseborough manages to convince in the title role. He does it so well that Edward Norton was so impressed that he mounted a Twitter campaign with friends and acquaintances to get him an Oscar nomination. to leslie supposedly based on a true story, but it is primarily a Hollywood movie by and for Hollywood. The story can be nicely summed up in a country song, but it offers little more than the sketch that song would be.