A Year of Spectacular Men | Madelyn Deutch Plays Puppet-master
They say behind every powerful man is a strong woman. Flip it in reverse and things don't pan out in quite the same way: after seeing, The Year of Spectacular Men, it would seem that behind every powerful woman is a slew of mediocre men. Or at least that's the case for writer actress and composer, Madelyn Deutch. The film draws on Madelyn's real-life experiences as a young creative navigating a transitional period of her life. While Deutch proves to be adept as one of the lead actresses, she prefers to be a "puppeteer instead of a puppet," and take the lead behind the scenes with writing, casting, composing and overall creative direction.
Madelyn's mom, Lea Thompson, decided to do the same for this project. Thompson, who made her name in the industry playing Lorraine in the Back to the Future films, makes an appearance film as Madelyn's on screen mother, but her role extends far beyond that. You'll also find her behind the lens, directing both her daughters as they explore the ups and downs of millennial life on screen.
As a creative, Madelyn expressed disappointment with the (lack of) curated millennial content in in the market: “What’s the deal? There’s no film or TV show for millennial women!” Madelyn's character, Izzy, certainly fills this void: she is relatable to many young women in today's world. Madelyn hopes when people see the film, they’ll be able to understand such an underserved demographic. “The framework for the film didn’t come from the family stuff, it came from the guy stuff. I sat down and thought about a lot of experiences I had with five distinctly different relationships, over a year period." These crazy romantic escapades inform the tone and pace of the film: it's a whirlwind film that doesn't hold back from revealing the reality of romantic life when you're in your twenties.
In the film, Madelyn and her sister, Zoey Deutch, explore sisterhood. The two are cast as sisters: Zoey plays Izzy's younger sister Sabrina. But don’t be fooled; it is by no means an autobiography. Madelyn describes Izzy as, “nicer, more free-spirited, and a lot more plucky than me." Similarly, Zoey finds differences in her on screen character Sabrina, who is incidentally an actress. While they are both energetic and hard-working young actress, Zoey would never sabotage her sister for success, like Sabrina does in the film. It's clear to see that the two sisters have no such problems in real life. They spend their time ranting about Cheetos and collaborating-rather than knocking each other down.
The film is truly a family affair. Featured alongside Thompson and her dynamic daughters, is producer, Howard Deutch-the duo's father. The girls openly admit that the foundation of this movie has been years in the making for the family. After growing and working as individuals for so many years, they decided to come together to form a collective creative project that incorporates their various worldview. The film serves as a bonding experience for the family. Zoey explains that like the cast of Survivor, the family was put through the ringer during production. " In order to really bond you have to deal with stuff that maybe you don’t really want to, or that might seem difficult or challenging."
Catch the family in action this Friday, June 15th!