Comprised of three frank and psychologically resounding stories of women at crossroads in their relationships with men, writer-director Rebecca Miller's "Personal Velocity" creates a visceral sense of its characters' lives and conflicted emotions that carries it far above and beyond what could have been a melodramatic, Lifetime Channel-style anthology, had it fallen into the wrong hands.
Miller is the daughter of playwright Arthur Miller, and she's learned a thing or two about delving into the human psyche and building an empathetic relationship between characters and audience from her dad's works like "The Crucible" and "Death of a Salesman." Her stories are profound and penetrating on a small, personal scale, and succinct without seeming like allegorical models of modern women's adversity.
Tied loosely together by each character hearing a news report of a hit-and-run accident, the film's three segments follow an abused wife (Kyra Sedgwick) who is finally ready to run away from her husband but has nowhere to go, a yuppie Manhattan book editor (Parker Posey) whose career is taking off just as she's falling out of love with her fiancé and hating herself for it, and an already troubled young punkette (Fairuza Balk) whose direct connection to the hit-and-run has shaken her faith in her relationship barometer just as she's learned she's pregnant.
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The film is expected to continue without Mendes' involvement.