"The Owls" may be targeted as a niche film and, while I'm surely not its intended audience, I still found this post-modern experimental film to be of surprising interest. Unfolding as somewhat of a thriller, this tale of Older Wiser Lesbians unravels with conventional narrative, character confessionals, and actors breaking the fourth wall to discuss their roles. That's a lot of hats for a 66 minute feature film to wear--but surprisingly, it is this anything may happen abandon that keeps things lively. For those that follow the genre, there are plenty of familiar faces--but there is one true star performance at the heart of the movie. The always reliable Guinevere Turner all but devours the scenery in a fiercely refreshing and funny lead role.
"The Owls" centers around an ensemble of four lesbian friends harboring a guilty secret. A party went awry resulting in a tragedy that the ladies have conspired to cover up. When an enigmatic stranger appears, the delicate and precarious balance of this quartet is upended--and mysteries will certainly be exposed before all is over. Turner, at the center of the maelstrom, plays a former singer of some repute grappling with alcoholism and middle-aged angst. It is a dynamically appealing performance and an aspect of the film that I absolutely loved!
This certainly isn't big budget filmmaking and the limitations are apparent. But the film addresses questions of sexuality, age, gender identity, race and other sociological issues within the context of a fairly intriguing mystery. I enjoyed this film a great deal and admired the experimental and collaborative nature of the work. An easy recommendation if you fall into the targeted demographic--but I really think this will appeal to anyone who loves independent film. KGHarris, 3/11.